What Is Metal Quenching?

There are several different processes for heat treating metal and then cooling it off to the appropriate temperature in an efficient manner. One such process is metal quenching in Gastonia, NC. Many professionals who work with metal parts and components use metal quenching after heat treatment in Gastonia, NC. There are many nuances to metal quenching that you may not be aware of. Read on to learn more about this process.

Working with metal

In order to work with metal, metalworkers and blacksmiths have to heat the metal to a very high temperature. At this high heat, they can then shape it, anneal it, stress relieve it or normalize it. The problem is that metal has to be brought back to room temperature very quickly after it’s done being worked on. If not, the microstructure of the metal can change, which can compromise its strength and integrity. While annealing involves a gradual cooling of the metal, metal quenching in Gastonia, NC is much faster, which provides some benefits. However, it’s a delicate balance to plan the rate of the cooling of the metal and the needs of the end product.

The metal quenching process

Metal quenching involves plunging the metal into some liquid or even forced air. Metalworkers will see a burst of steam as the hot metal comes into contact with the room-temperature substance, creating a dramatic and satisfying effect.

There are many solutions that metalworkers use as the room temperature substance. Water is an okay option. It’s effective in cooling metal quickly and helping the metal reach its maximum level of hardness right away, but it can also lead to cracking or distortions, which, depending on what the end product is, could be a fatal drawback. As an alternative, metal quenching in Gastonia, NC can use oil, polymers, salt water or even air convection.

The tradeoff with different solutions is the rate at which metal is cooled. The slower the metal is cooled, the greater the chance of changes in microstructure. However, with faster cooling, you risk cracks and distortions.

J.F. Heat Treating Inc. is your local professional metallurgical and heat treatment company in Gastonia, NC. We provide all types of heat treating services to soften, harden, relieve stress and remove contaminants from your metal parts and components. Our professional heat treatments in Gastonia, NC include annealing, aging, quenching and tempering of all types of equipment, from basic parts to state-of-the-art machines. All our services are designed to completely soften, harden, carburize, relieve stress on, remove contaminants from or alter your components without changing the product shape.

Our metal quenching process takes into account the structure of your particular metal and function of the final product when we choose our methods and materials. We also provide shot blasting and wheelabrating cleaning services to give you a machine that performs at maximum efficiency and power. We are a full-service lab and can treat all types of parts or machines. Give us a call today to learn more about how we can serve you!

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