Stress Relieving, Normalizing, Annealing & Their Effect On Wear Resistant Steel
Heat treating is a process used to change chemical and mechanical properties of wear resistant steel produced in its original form. A common example of this is heating the material to high temperature, quick cooling with water or oil (Quenching) and then re-heating at lower temperatures (Tempering).
Annealing, Normalizing and Stress Relieving do not involve any Quenching or Tempering.
What Is Annealing?
Annealing is designed to reduce the steel’s hardness and increase its ductility to reduce cracking. It involves slowly heating the wear resistant steel to a certain temperature for a set time and then slowly cooling it in an oven to change its microstructure. This is known as ‘soak time’, which is usually about one hour per inch of thickness.
What Is Normalizing?
Similar to Annealing, Normalizing is also designed to reduce stresses and increase ductility. The steel is heated to a specific temperature, taken out of the oven, and then cooled to room temperature. Normalizing is more common than Annealing because it’s less expensive and it does not tie up the oven during the ‘soak time’, which could last up to 20 hours.
What is Stress Relieving?
Stress Relieving is done after hot rolling, welding or cutting with heat, all of which build up stresses. In Stress Relieving, the steel is heated to a temperature just below the critical annealing temperature and then allowed to slowly cool. This results in little or no change to the steel’s properties and is usually done on low carbon steels.
ENDURA, the Unique Wear Resistant Steel
ENDURA is a unique wear resistant steel that does not require Annealing, Normalizing, or Stress Relieving. It handles wear 8 times greater than mild steel. Because of the heat treatment and quenching in oil rather than water, the microstructure is very homogeneous. Think of dropping pick up sticks. The sticks are a jumble. Now think of laying down all the sticks in a row beside each other. That is ENDURA’s microstructure. This limits the tearing, shearing and gouging of the steel.
For more information on the best wear resistant steal for your needs, contact us.