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drakes4moose

Spring Steel for Traps

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I have been looking around on the internet for spring steel used for trap springs and have not had much success.  I have seen some reference to using 5160 which makes sense with my limited knowledge.  I am looking for a spring steel to purchase close to the size of the end product which would be ~1" wide by 0.10" thick.  Does anyone know where I could purchase this approximate size in a spring steel (5160 or equivalent steel that would function for a spring)?

 

Upon further reading over lunch, I see 1095 is called spring steel on McMater-Carr and is available in the ~0.10" thickness but comes in a 8" x 12" sheet if I am reading things correctly.  Not sure how I would efficiently get 1" strips out of this other than cold or hot chiseling. I does say you can get it annealed.  I have no powered metal saw, only a hacksaw.

 

Does anyone know what trap manufacturers are using for their springs?

 

Any and all help appreciated in educating me!

 

Thanks

 

Cody

 

 

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Yes. 5160 and 1095 are both often used for springs.

 

Your best bet for making strips quickly would be shearing of annealed stock. You probably don't have a shear, tho. (Shears come is all sizes, from ones that can only shear a thin guage to ones that can handle stock 1" thick or more.)

 

Your other challenge is heat treating. To get an effective spring, you will need to harden and temper. Annealed stock has a fairly low yield point (the point at which the bent metal "gives" and won't spring all the way back). There are lots of resources on that here at IFI. Look in the heat treating section.

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why not look at the knife making resource list, 1/10 x  1 inch is common for pattern welding sizes. also the knife making sections has a seperate posting for heat treating because thinner sections react differently than thicker forgings...

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Did not think of a shear or plasma cutter since I do not own, but my boss has both I think, I will have to look into that.  I have not tried to heat treat a spring, but have read some and have a local contact who is experienced in spring making (mostly for muzzelloaders), I plan on contacting him for guidance in that department.  If I understand what I have read, to temper for a spring I would be in the 700-800 degrees area, a lot hotter than my oven can get.  

 

I will check the knife resource list and heat treating sections tonight.  I checked for spring steel, the only two places I am familiar with Aldo and Kelly Cupples and then went to McMaster-Carr.

 

Thanks

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If you don't have the necessary shears or torches to cut your 0.10" thick metal, consider a 4 1/2" angle grinder with a 1/16" or 0.045" metal cutoff wheel.  If you are VERY careful and don't rush you can cut that stock easily with the angle grinder.

 

I have no O/A torch, abrasive or dry cut metal saw or plasma cutter so I have to make do with what's at hand.  I routinely cut rod and bar up to 1 1/2" and sheet steel up to 3/8" thick.  Just take it slow and careful and wear the proper PPE!

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As much as I deeply hate leg hold traps I suggest that you take it to your local HVAC or sheet metal shop and see if their shear will handle something that size.  I have found prices at a waterjet shop to be pretty reasonable.

 

Conflictedly,

George M.

 

PS I'm not a PETA type, I hunt regularly.  I just hate leg hold traps.  The springs are good steel though and I will turn them into knives, etc. every chance I get. 

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drakesfourmoose, as a trapper myself I can see where you are going with this. However I would ask if you are respringing longsprings and if so how many.  This may sound lazy but you can buy replacement springs for your traps. I have messed around with trying to respring the springs in the past with little luck. I just buy new replacements as needed.

Now if your looking for something to do I am subscribed to your post.

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Thanks for the responses. I am not looking to replace springs or use (at least not regularly) the traps I make. It is just a project I am trying out. My plan is to make a double long spring trap in the size of a number one single long spring just for fun and who knows maybe I can sell a few at the trappers rendevous.

I looked through all the suppliers websites listed in the knife section and did not find the size and steel I referenced above. Maybe I missed it somewhere. Anyone else already know where this may be found? I will keep searching and if I can't find it, I think the sheet I found would work with the ideas for cutting from above.

I am mainly just a lurker on here because when I have a question usually all it takes is a little searching. In this case though I have only found two posts regarding trap forging on the site. The search will continue!

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I'm always wanting to make some round conibear type traps.  I see where someone makes the round body grips however I always think I can build them myself.  I do all my trap mods myself and on the look out for something new and improved.

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I have made a few leg hold traps for fun. I do not use them either. They are not too difficult to make. Get some hay rake tines and forge to desired shape. The rest of the trap can be mild steel.

Good luck.

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Im a trapper myself, have been for years..Most longsprings use something along the lines of 1080- 1095'ish steel..Thickness is pretty much the same but may go up as the size trap goes up..You can find the stock from many places..

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