Coil Springs In Manufacturing: How Are They Made?

Coil springs are everywhere. They’re on watches, children’s toys, power tools, and even vehicles. These springs can store mechanical energy; when needed or expected, they release their stored energy to accomplish their purposes.

For example, when you compress a small spring using your fingers, the power you need to compress it is stored in it. Once you release your fingers, the spring will bounce back or release all the energy you stored.

There are different types of coil springs. You have torsion, extension, and the all-too-common compression springs. All of them have similar manufacturing processes, but there are a few steps that are unique to each one of them. These different processes allow them to have other functions and purposes.

If you’re interested in knowing how they’re made, particularly the ones used in manufacturing, continue reading.

Selecting The Material

Manufacturers can use different materials to create coil springs. One of the most commonly used materials is steel. Usually, steel coil springs are tensile and hard enough to accomplish most of the things required of them. For example, steel is often used in making torsion springs to resist torque.

Another reason most springs are made of steel, aside from tensile strength, is because they’re good at withstanding moisture and most common chemicals that could easily corrode other materials used for coil springs. Also, they’re less expensive than other spring materials.

Some other materials used for coil springs are bronze, titanium, and other non-ferrous metals. Non-metal materials like plastic can also be used as coil springs, but the number of applications where they’re used may be limited as the tensile strength of plastic springs can be limited.

Making The Spring

After selecting the material, manufacturers will get a block or stock of that material and turn it into a wire first. Wires can be created using different processes and machines. However, most DIY people wouldn’t even bother to create their spring wire from scratch. Commonly, they’ll just use piano wires.

Once a wire is available or has been created, this wire will be fed into an auto-coiler machine, one of the significant advances in manufacturing technology. This machinery will twist and turn the long wire into a coil spring.

Auto-coiling machines will do almost all the work for the manufacturer. Aside from being fully automatic, most modern coiling machines are highly configurable. They can allow the manufacturer to adjust the setting they want for their coils easily. They can easily change the amount, design, length, and even the tension of the spring they want to produce.

To the manufacturer’s convenience, auto-coiling machines work at high speed, so in a matter of minutes, the manufacturer can easily create the number of springs they need for production or sales.

In addition to twisting and turning, the auto-coiling machine may also clean and lubricate the wires to make it easy for the device to turn them into the familiar helical coil you know. Some auto-coils may also have a pitch tool to allow the changing pitch of the coil being manufactured. Once the coils are twisted, they’ll go through the cutting tool, which is often situated at the end of the coiling device.

In case the manufacturer only needs to produce a small number of springs, they can have the option to use a lathe and manually turn springs using it instead of having a specialized auto-coiling machine, which can be a tad expensive for small shops.

Finishing And Storing The Coils

Some manufacturers and shops may need additional processes to complete their spring coils. For example, some coil springs will need to be ground, peened, tempered, and coated by paint before they’re stored, sold, or used.

The other processes needed or performed depend on the type of purposes spring will serve.  For example, if the spring will be used as suspension for cars, these springs may be required to be coated with paint to prevent them from quickly corroding once the vehicles get bought and used.


Thankfully, it has become easy for manufacturers to create the coil springs they need to produce, sell, or use. This is especially true if the manufacturer could acquire an auto-coiling machine. All they need once they have the machine is an operator who can monitor and operate the process.

Meanwhile, DIYers and smiths can easily create coil springs in their shops. They can even skip creating the wire they need and rely on the available spring wires in the market. Using their traditional tools, lathes, wire cutters, and hammers available in their shops, they can have all the spring coils they need.

Rylie Holt