A successful business strives to create quality products for their customers. That can mean using higher quality materials, improving quality processes, and even adding services to create a lasting, superior product. Our customers often look for ways to improve the life of their parts that goes above and beyond their customers’ expectations.
When first discovered in the late 1920s, shot peening was used by the automotive industry to increase the life of valve springs. Today, it has many useful applications across a handful of industries. If you’re searching for ways to improve part quality and develop a longer lasting part, shot peening is a metal finishing process to consider.
What is Shot Peening?
Shot peening should not be confused with shot basting. Blasting is generally used to clean metal for follow-on processes such as powder coat painting.
Shot peening is used to modify the mechanical properties of the material to create a stronger product. This called creating “Beneficial Stress”. It is a cold working process in which the surface of the material is bombarded with small spherical media called shot. The shot acts like a ball-peen hammer when it strikes the part, creating a dimple on the surface of the material. Shot peening can also create a decorative finish.
The size of the media determines the size of the dimple on the part. Smaller media can get into smaller places; larger media can leave a larger dimple.
How Shot Peening Extends a Part Life
Most material failures are the result of fractures or cracks that start at the surface of the material. These fractures are caused from over-stressing or bending past the materials yield strength, fatigue from continuous stress, or corrosion weakening the surface. When forces are applied to any material, tension and compressive stress regions form. Fractures only occur in tension stress regions.
By shot peening, internal compressive stress areas form on the part, opposing the tension stress regions and preventing fractures in the material. The compressive stress areas in a shot peened surface can profoundly increase the service life of the material.
Example: Shot Peeing the teeth of a gear, the bend on a hook, turbine blades, camshafts, etc.
KVF Quad Can Help
KVF Quad uses a variety of media material (steel shot, cut wire, etc.) verified against A, N, and C type Almen strips for consistent results. We provide certifications for our peening processes and meet most customer exclusive requirements or industry specifications. Contact our shot peening experts to learn if shot peening is right for your project.