There is a pretty good chance that you come in contact with heat treated steels on a daily basis without ever knowing it. You might be thinking, “Steel needs treatment? Isn’t it indestructible?” Well, the short answer is that, no, steel is far from indestructible. The fact of the matter is that steel—though a metal harder than any person could sculpt with their bare hands—is a malleable material. All it takes to change its form is the right combination of heat and pressure. Like other materials, steel can also “rot” when exposed to rust, and crack when strained too hard.
Metal heat treating in Gastonia, NC aims to make metals like steel a little stronger than they would be otherwise. Take a hunting or survival knife, for example. It needs to be stronger than what we keep in our kitchen because we may end up having to cut wood or use it to pry something apart. Heat treating gives the blade an extra strength not found in thinner, weaker, everyday blades. If you tried to chop wood or pry with a carving knife, you would likely break the blade and could even injure yourself, which would not be good.
In other applications, such as firearms, heat treatment adds the same durable finish to any object that is exposed to continual strain in bursts. For a gun, strong metal is all that stands between your hand and an explosive charge. And although guns are often heat treated for overall strength during the manufacturing process, many undergo additional treatment for their finish because it adds more strength to the surface of the gun, as well, to prevent cosmetic damage. The gun is heated and quickly quenched in oil to create a unique and strong look.
Strength and durability provide lasting results
Did you know that many of the tools we use around our homes have gone through metal heat treating? The wrench you used last weekend to free the rusted-on bolt from your lawn mower blade was heat treated to make sure that it could withstand the stress and strain of a full-grown man or woman pulling against it with all their might. Since nuts and bolts also need to be strong, it’s essential that these objects keep their shape, even under the immense force of a pneumatic wrench. If the head of a bolt is forced out of shape, how can you get it off? Pretty difficult, right?
While most of us may take for granted the things around us that need to be as strong and durable as possible, those in the industry of metal heat treating in Gastonia, NC know how important it really is in everyday life. So the next time you grab a wrench or get in your car, think for a moment about how glad you are that heat treating is making your life a little stronger, even if you don’t know exactly how.
Do you have questions or a project in the works? Our professional team at J.F. Heat Treating Inc. is ready to help out. Give us a call today to learn more!