Metal Components 15685

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May 5, 2008

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Metal Components

Originally Published MPMN May 2008


Metal Components

Stainless-steel hose fittings

Metal-injection-molded (MIM) hose fittings made from Type 316L stainless steel are free of the design constraints that limit fabrication of such fittings by conventional metal-forming processes, according to their manufacturer. In addition, MIM technology allows stainless steel to be employed for larger parts, such as hose fittings, than could previously be injection molded from the material. The MIM fittings can have complex geometries, and their surfaces are clean and uniform enough to satisfy medical technology requirements. Their resistance to chemicals and extreme temperatures makes fittings constructed from 316L alloy suitable for critical applications. The fitting line includes adapters, straight couplers, tee connectors, elbows, reduction couplers, and y connectors.
Eldon James Corp., Loveland, CO

Machined springs

Springs machined in the form of a curved-beam helix offer the performance capabilities of that shape combined with the elastic properties of the high-strength steel, aluminum, or titanium from which they are formed. Machined springs have features and functional potential that more-traditional types of springs do not, according to the manufacturer. The springs with the Heli-Cal flexure design provide precise deflection rates for compression, extension, torsion, lateral bending, and lateral translation spring functions. They are suited for use in a variety of medical device applications.
Helical Products Company, Inc., Santa Maria, CA

Panel fasteners

Self-clinching stainless-steel panel fasteners are designed to install permanently and flush in thin stainless-steel sheets. The spring-loaded assemblies are available in a variety of screw lengths and in thread sizes of #4-40 through #10-32 and M3 through M5. Constructed from Type 400 stainless steel in an easy-to-install captive-screw design, the Type PFC4 fasteners are suitable for use in stainless-steel sheets as hard as 88 HRb and can provide corrosion resistance similar to that of zinc-plated steel. The RoHS-compliant fasteners can attach metal sheets as thin as 0.060 in. Installation is accomplished by inserting the fastener into the properly sized punched or drilled hole and, once the mounting hole is positioned over the fastener’s shank, squeezing with a press until the shoulder of the retainer comes into contact with the sheet material.
PennEngineering, Danboro, PA

Stainless-steel fasteners

Fasteners made of Type 18-8 and Type 316 stainless steel, along with thousands of standard inch and metric fasteners, are stocked for medical equipment manufacturers by a distributor. The company is authorized to sell Avdel, Cherry, Bollhoff, and Pop rivets; HeliCoil threaded inserts; IRW Fastex plastic fasteners; Loctite adhesives and thread lockers; and Tamperproof screws, among other branded products. Its stock also includes steel, nylon, silicon bronze, brass, and aluminum nuts, bolts, screws, and washers. Made-to-print fasteners and other custom items such as cold- and hot-headed, forged, screw-machined, and laser-cut parts and stampings are available.
Atlantic Fasteners Company, Inc., West Springfield, MA

Bellows couplings

Couplings employing a stainless-steel bellows exhibit very high torsional rigidity with zero backlash and flexibility across all three axes of possible shaft misalignment. The design of the compact BKC series allows high position repeatability to be maintained even under torsional loading, while only a very light restoring load is placed on shaft bearings under misalignment. To help ensure that the couplings fit mechanically in precision servo applications, the connection between the bellows and aluminum clamping hub is hidden within the fit-length of the hub itself, allowing for axial shaft engagement just like that of standard bellows but with a 15% shorter overall length. Shaft hubs are custom bored for shafts 5⁄16 to 2.95 in. in diameter, and sizes are available for torque capacities of 1133 to 4425 in.-lb.
R+W America LP, Bensenville, IL

Net-shape electroforms

Advanced electroforming techniques are employed by a specialist company to mass-produce net-shape components from a proprietary nickel-based alloy that is comparable in mechanical and chemical properties to stainless steel. The company grows precision high-strength static and dynamic components from a solution of metal salts, forming them on a mandrel with high part-to-part consistency. Because little or no postmachining is involved, the method minimizes the labor and materials necessary to fabricate a part. Components and assemblies for medical, instrumentation, motion control, and other applications made by electrofoming are lightweight and exhibit corrosion resistance and good mechanical performance. They include miniature housings and enclosures, stress-free bellows, catheter tip–forming dies, microfluidic molds, and reflectors.
NiCoForm Inc., Rochester, NY

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