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Wave Springs in a Nutshell

Most engineers have plenty of experience with traditional coil and disc springs, while single- and multi-turn wave springs remain something of a mystery. Yet wave springs, particularly those made from flat wire, should be better known given their compelling engineering advantages. Chief among these advantages is an excellent force-to-work height ratio.  Well-designed wave springs can produce the same or even greater forces as coil springs whose work heights are up to twice as large. 

As drop-in replacements for traditional spring elements, wave springs can improve the performance of spring-loaded components. But to maximize the engineering potential of wave springs, you should design around their unique qualities, which include: 

  • Axial Space Savings. A wave spring will typically need just 50% of the work height of a coil spring to deliver an equivalent force.
  • Consistent Spring Force. Wave springs have a clear advantage in linear and non-linear force behaviors. Wave springs have a clear linear force between 30% and 70% deflection.
  • No Torsional Loads. In coil springs torsional loads can cause the pre-loaded component to rotate in use, resulting in excess wear. Wave springs do not have this issue.
  • Increased Travel. Replacing a stacked disc spring assembly with one wave spring can result in both cost and quality benefits. Rotor Clip engineers multi-turn wave springs that up to 50mm of travel.
  • Dial in Required Stiffness. You can easily dial in a required stiffness by optimizing the number of wave per turn using well-known design. 




At Rotor Clip, we produce wave springs in a vertically integrated manufacturing environment—in which we roll our own flat wire and form it in our own machines. Vertical integration allows for fine adjustments in spring designs in response to minor batch to batch variations in raw material to maintain targeted performance characteristics. It also allows us to keep tight statistical control on all the rolling and coiling processes.


When it comes to wave springs, the importance of this manufacturing expertise can’t be understated. So it pays to specify high-quality springs. If you do, you’ll be able to take advantage of all the design benefits wave springs can offer.


For a more detailed look at wave springs please download our white paper

"The Best Springs You Haven't Tried Yet"

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