Difficulties in Metal Spinning Special Alloys

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Mon, Aug 17, 2015

Too often in the metal fabrication industry, the phrase “we're not set up for that” really means “we don't want to do that.” When customers are met with either the unwillingness to manufacture their parts to print or the inexperience to know how to do so properly, the end project suffers greatly. Granted, it's important for designs to be practical and feasible, but when a manufacturer says, “metal spinning with special alloys is just too difficult” it's simply not true...for Helander Metal Spinning anyway.

Special alloys are in no way a hindrance to getting the custom parts you want, in the specifications you want them, and in the tightest of tolerances. In fact, one of the major advantages of creating parts via metal spinning is the ability to create quality, uniform, products out of traditional metal, alloys, and exotics alike. As long as a part is ductile it can be metal spun and even high-strength alloys are workable and machinable. 


The only difficulty in working with special alloys is narrowing down and making decisions about the endless possibilities of parts that can be manufactured.

What Kind of Alloys?

To reiterate, alloys are not only feasible to work with, they are actually highly malleable and form very efficiently. This includes high-strength materials as well as high-temperature and other special alloys, some of which include:

  • Hastelloy® – Considered an exotic metal, Hastelloy® is used when a project needs extra strength but also must be corrosion-resistant. Hastelloy® is a nickel alloy that can also include chromium, iron, copper, cobalt, and manganese. There are almost two dozen different types of Hastelloy® alloys and some of the properties can exceed that of stainless steel in corrosive environments. Despite being a high-performance, 'super' alloy, Hastelloy® forms well and responds to metal spinning, creating durable, rigid, resistant parts for use in a wide variety of industries.
  • Inconel® – A nickel alloy containing a large amount of chromium, Inconel® can be difficult to form in other metal fabrication techniques but responds very well to spinning. Inconel® is known as a high-strength steel that is not only extremely durable, but also resistant to corrosion and oxidization. It can be used in aerospace, chemical, and aqueous applications to name a few.

These are just two of the many special alloys that Helander Metal Spinning can fabricate using our metal spinning capabilities. To learn more about how we work with a variety of materials, or for specific information on your project needs, feel free to contact us today 630.268.9292. 


How cost effective is metal spinning? Click here to find out  

Tags: Metal Spinning, Custom Fabrication, Hastelloy, Special Alloy, Inconel

Need More Effective Lighting? Consider Metal Spun Light Reflectors

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Thu, Jul 09, 2015


Light reflectors are used by architectural and commercial lighting professionals to augment artificial light. Since people obtain the majority of their information through their sense of sight, light reflectors are always in high demand; these products can provide appropriate lighting, which helps people process visual information faster and with greater clarity.

Proper lighting establishes your ideal ambiance; light reflectors aid in controlling the amount and intensity of light in specific rooms or areas. To achieve desired consumer results, light reflectors are often manufactured through metal spinning—a specialized metalworking process known for its abundant benefits, including extreme customization, low-tooling cost, and quality finished products.

Spun metal light reflectors can be custom engineered to enhance any lighting set up; these products can have either seamless or riveted/welded constructions, and are available in diverse sizes, shapes, materials, and finishes.

With the use of metal spinning, companies can choose between cylindrical, spherical, or hemispherical products made from any metal material—these include brass, copper, stainless steel, and aluminum (the most common material for light reflectors).

The metal spinning process is well-suited for any production volume, from prototype to high volume, and the speed of the process allows for timelier delivery of higher-quality products.

Click here to download our Metal Spinning and Hydroforming eBook, or click the button below.

Learn More About  Metal Spinning and Hydroforming

Tags: Metal Spinning, Custom Fabrication, Light Reflectors, Lighting

Shapes Achieved through Metal Spinning

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Tue, May 12, 2015


Metal spinning is a well-known fabrication process that produces axially symmetric parts. This process is simple and yields high-quality results, and as such, it has become a primary production method for several manufacturers.


Metal spun parts have proven to be essential to various industrial and commercial applications. A wide variety of shapes and geometries can be achieved using metal spinning.

  • Hemispheres and Spheres are highly versatile shapes. Hemispheres are frequently used in the lighting industry as decorative fixtures and in the communications industry as satellite dishes. Hemispheres can be welded together to create spheres, which provide the strength needed for demanding geological applications.
  • Cones are used in applications that include alternate energy support and soil and concrete testing; in fact, two cones can be welded or soldered together to create slump cone funnels, which are required for concrete testing in the U.S.
  • Flanged parts are crucial when producing diverse air calibration nozzles. The flanged shaped can be altered to accommodate
  • Manufacturers utilize metal spun cylinders for different types of custom piping, tubing, and other products. These seamless cylinders are created using processes such as rolling, bending, and forming; these pieces are commonly used to create pressure vessels capable of withstanding high pressures.
  • Reentrant spun metal pieces are easily identified due to their narrow shape. Reentrant-shaped pieces are primarily used in the food industry—applications include housing for pressure cookers and smokers, different cooking kettles, and individual soup cans. Metal spinning the most cost effective forming solution for this shape.
  • The parabolic shape is frequently used in the communications industry. This metal spun shape is extremely conducive for accurate signal transmissions; antenna reflectors and satellite dishes are prime examples of parabolic products.  
  • Venturi metal shapes closely resemble hourglasses. These shapes are highly versatile; venturi pieces are used for dust collection in the power and bulk solids industry and spray painting in the automotive industry.

Different metal spun shapes are utilized throughout several industries, such as aerospace and defense, waste storage industry power, oil and agriculture, architecture, furniture manufacturing, HVAC, and many others.

Due to the assortment of shapes produced through this process, metal spinning is highly valued in both commercial and industrial applications.

How cost effective is metal spinning? Click here to find out




Tags: Metal Spinning, Custom Metal Spinning, aerospace industry, metal spinning components

When you Need Seamless Products, Turn to Metal Spinning

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Mon, Apr 06, 2015

Modern industrial applications are far more demanding, and as such, companies must rely on different metal forming processes. There are several processes to choose from—including forging, extrusion, deep drawing, and others—but few can match the efficiency of metal spinning.

Metal spinning, known as spin forming, is an ideal forming process for creating cylindrical, round, or spherical objects that are both robust and axially symmetrical. During this process, a disc of metal is spun at very high speeds on a vertical or horizontal lathe; as the metal becomes more malleable, it is shaped to fit precise part geometries.

The uniform forces applied to the metal blank provide an equally uniform finished surface to the material. The finished part surface is exceptionally smooth and seamless, foregoing the need for grinding, welding, and other secondary finishing services. The seamlessness offered by metal spinning can be quite significant to industrial professionals.

Over time, seamless metal spun parts won’t succumb to cracking, breaking, or misalignment. This seamless construction gives products enhanced resistance to internal and external pressures—this is highly sought after in high-pressure applications.

Thanks to the enhancements provided by the metal spinning process, products such as tank heads and custom pressure vessels are more suitable to perform in harsh environments. Tank heads, fire extinguishers, scuba tanks, carbon dioxide (CO²) cartridges and other similar products must be capable of withstanding the most intense pressures. The seamless construction of metal formed products can also reduce cycle times, resulting in further cost efficiencies in the long run. 

Learn More About Hand Spinning and CNC Spinning

Tags: aluminum, seamless spinning

Metal Spinning Affords Fast Turnaround Times

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Wed, Mar 25, 2015

When deciding on metal fabricating processes for component manufacturing, there are many factors to consider—turnaround time is one such factor that is of particular importance. Delayed project deadlines often result in costly consequences for many companies.

emisphereWhen choosing between different fabrication processes, turnaround can be just as important as the quality of the part. One of the main benefits of metal spinning is the short turnaround time on projects.

Tooling required for metal spinning is produced quickly and easily. The tooling dies of metal stamping or casting can take up to six weeks to manufacture, which can cause project delays. The expedited tooling of metal spinning enables parts to be completed and delivered in only four to six weeks. Tooling that takes less time to produce helps to accelerate the overall production cycle.

Metal spinning tooling can be made from a variety of materials. This flexibility in tooling improves production time and provides design engineers with greater performance features. For instance, geometric and dimensional changes from prototyping through production are easier and less costly than in other metal forming processes. Tolerances can also be adjusted if necessary.

Metal spinning also enables multiple operations to be performed in one set up, eliminating secondary set ups and refining production rates. When complex geometries are required, reducing manufacturing steps immediately improves the time required for each component.

Advancements in lathe technologies enable components to be produced with tight tolerances and extreme repeatability. Retooling of CNC machines is rare, but is a simple and fast process. If specialized tooling isn’t required, production can meet very short turnaround times (two to three weeks).

Since the ease of tooling provides shorter lead times, metal spinning is an ideal production method for axially symmetric parts and components.  This is a highly competitive option for metal forming, and the benefit of receiving completed orders promptly saves a considerable amount of time and added costs.


Tags: metal spinning vs metal stamping for prototyping, metal spinning components

Metal Spinning Produces Tight Tolerance Components

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Mon, Mar 02, 2015

Depending on the specific form and structure of a component, there can be more than one metal fabricating process that can be used to meet the same end. Although different processes can achieve similar results, there may be greater benefits of one over another.

Metal spinning, a process that forms axially symmetrical parts, is a fairly simple process that produces advanced results. Metal spinning is not traditionally thought of as an advanced process, but technological innovations have enabled the production of components that require extremely tight tolerances.

Combining the past with the present, metal spinning joins together the skills of the craftsmen with the automation of current machine technologies. Since this process forms a metal component on a lathe instead of stamping, cutting, or deep drawing, metal spinning calls upon the expertise of the machinist and the equipment to meet the required specifications.

There are two types of metal spinning options available: CNC and hand spinning. Both processes form a metal disk over a block to produce conical, cylindrical, parabolic, toroidal, venturi, and hemispherical shaped pieces. Also, these processes offer unique benefits, and the combination of the two can create finished products of even higher quality.

CNC spinning machinery enables high production capabilities and allows high strength materials to be formed accurately. It is a highly repeatable process that delivers precision results; automated and CNC spinning that is assisted with hydraulics replaces expensive tooling required for stamping and produces more cost-effective components.

Hand spinning is suitable for smaller runs and all types of industrial and precious metals and alloys. Perfectly finished parts, without stretch marks or wrinkles, are consistently achieved. Hand spinning is ideal for prototyping, products of varying sizes, and architectural and decorative pieces.

The inherent level of repeatability found in metal spinning enables the production of tight tolerance componentry. Due to this fact, metal spinning is just as effective as other fabricating processes.

How cost effective is metal spinning? Click here to find out




Tags: Metal Spinning, Custom Metal Spinning, cost effective metal spinning, metal spinning components

Helander Earns New ASME Certification

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Fri, Feb 06, 2015

At Helander Metal Spinning, we have provided custom metal forming services for over 80 years. In addition to our high-quality and versatile manufacturing capabilities, much of our success can be credited to our numerous industry certifications.

asmelogoIncreasingly demanding applications must have appropriate components and tooling; standards for these applications are set by organizations such as the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). Each year, ASME awards certifications to truly exceptional companies.

Certifications inform customers that a company is aware of, and complies with, major industry standards. Helander is already ISO 9001:2008 and AS9100 Rev C. certified—we are proud to announce that we have just received certification for ASME’s Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code (BPVC).

What is the BPVC?

First issued in 1914, the Boiler and Pressure Vessel Code is a pioneering set of standards used to enhance both the safety and technology of boiler systems. The BPVC has long since been considered a necessity to industries such as power generation, petrochemical, manufacturing, and many others.

The BPVC provides requirements for construction, maintenance, inspection, and operation of boiler systems. Even after 100 years, these standards are still widely recognized and utilized. In fact, many products must adhere to the BPVC standard, or risk their market availability.

Choose Quality Every Time

At Helander Metal Spinning Company, each of our customer specified pressure vessels are held to ASME’s BPVC, and can be “U” stamped in house.   With our Section VIII Certification, we can fabricate seamless or welded vessels up to 72” in length and 36” in diameter.  Our pressure vessels are used as hydraulic accumulators, gas storage vessels, and pneumatic reservoirs—these are all demanding applications that require precision manufacturing.

Helander is more than happy to provide any information regarding our ASME certified pressure vessels. Visit our Quality Page to obtain free, downloadable copies of our certificates.

If you have questions about our certifications and qualifications, please contact us today.

Download our ASME Certificate


Tags: ASME Safety Standards

Simplify the R&D Process with Metal Forming

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Fri, Jan 16, 2015


In the metalworking industry, research and development (R&D) is vital for a successful manufacturing project.

After the initial product design, prototyping is the ideal next step in process; though producing a one-off part or component may seem like a simple task, this step is not without its issues. Prototyping can often consume time, leading to production delays, and tooling can cut into your company’s budget.

Metal-FormingOn the other hand, prototyping can be very beneficial to your efforts—depending on the chosen manufacturing process. Making this choice doesn’t need to be a daunting process; Helander Metal Spinning is here to help you understand the options available in prototype production, and to support your productivity goals.

As a leading company in metal forming and manufacturing, Helander has created a resource that elaborates on prototyping processes that are both time and cost efficient. The Metal Forming for your R&D Process eBook is a free guide to creating prototypes that best suit your needs.

Prototyping may seem like a luxury, but as we explain in this eBook, there are many accessible options available for several companies. Two production methods stand out due to their low cost and short run options:

  • Metal Spinning: A simple process that forms metal into seamless, axially symmetric parts. Low tooling costs promote savings when creating one-off parts and limited production runs.
  • Hydroforming: Flexible, highly accurate, and cost-effective process for producing components of varying shapes from ductile materials. This is used to form complex sample parts which are ideal for research purposes.

These methods are ideal for diverse products, and they are invaluable for creating prototypes to test in real-world situations. Metal Forming for your R&D Process greatly details these processes, and will provide you with a greater understanding of their significance.

Metal Forming for Your R&D Process Download eBook Now


Obtain your free copy of the new eBook today.

Tags: metal forming, prototyping

Metal Spun Spheres are Versatile and Cost-Effective

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Mon, Dec 08, 2014

At Helander Metal Spinning, we have provided clients with custom forming and fabrication services for the last 80 years. Our extensive experience has enabled us to specialize in several areas, but one of our core competencies is metal spinning.

Metal spinning is an ideal process for manufacturing high-quality round parts of different sizes and shapes—such as hemispheres and spheres. Our spherical metal parts are created simply and easily by joining two spun hemispheres; the resulting hollow spheres are imbued with the resiliency needed for the most demanding commercial and industrial applications.   

Our Beneficial Capabilities

With our state-of-the-art equipment, Helander has the capability to produce metal spheres using either CNC or hot spinning. These processes can produce parts with material thicknesses ranging from 0.018” to 0.0750”; typical tolerances are ± 0.015”, but tighter tolerances can be achieved depending on your specific needs. Additionally, metal spheres can be produced with diameters up to 60” and heights up to 30”.

Metal spinning is a highly economical means of manufacturing spheres. With metal spinning, lighter gauge materials can be utilized, cutting down on its already low tooling costs. This process requires sustainably less tooling than others such as stamping, casting, and forging; spinning eliminates the need to create expensive dies and patterns, which also makes it easier to set up.

Metal spinning produces less waste and can utilized preformed blanks, making it an environmentally friendly process. The smooth finishes yielded by metal spinning reduce the need for secondary processes, such as polishing, tumbling, deburring, and others—this helps you save even more on costs, while providing significantly shorter turnarounds.

Helander is capable of spinning several types of metals for production runs or varying sizes. Some of the typical spun metals include:

  •          Stainless Steel (300 and 400 series)
  •          Carbon Steel(s)
  •          Titanium
  •          Brass
  •          Aluminum (1100, 3003, 5052, 6061, 2024, and 7075 series)
  •          Bronze
  •          Copper
  •          Inconel®
  •          Hastelloy®

Applications of Metal Spheres

These versatile metal spun products can be utilized across several industries: petrochemical, oil & gas, water management, food & beverage, industrial heating, aerospace, automotive, power generation, agriculture, and many others.

Some commercial and industrial applications of metal spun spheres include:

  •          Boiler Feed Systems
  •          Steam Traps
  •          Sanitary Spray Balls
  •          Check & Air Valves
  •          Natural Gas & Oil Fields
  •          Oil Separators
  •          Water Distribution & Management
  •          And more

Contact Us for More Information

Our metal spun spheres are held to the same exacting industry standards as our other manufactured parts and components. If you’re interested in learning more about metal spinning, or any of our other custom forming or fabrication services, contact Helander Metal Spinning today. 

Tags: metal forming, Metal Spinning, metal hemispheres

Meet our Machines | 20" Hydroforming Press

Posted by Samuel Ibrahim, Jr. on Thu, Oct 09, 2014

At the heart of Helander Metal Spinning’s hydroforming services is our cutting edge 20" hydroforming press. Sheet hydroforming is an ideal process for manufacturing parts with complex or asymmetrical geometries that would require multiple punch cycles in a matched die stamping process. By replacing one of the rigid dies with highly pressurized hydraulic fluid contained in a flexible diaphragm, its dynamics allow it to take on the form of any conceivable geometry. We use it to create an almost unlimited range of geometric shapes, either shallow or deep drawn, from a wide variety of metals and metal alloys.

Designed by engineering and manufacturing professionals with decades of experience in the machine tool industry, this hydroforming press sets the industry standard in hydroforming technology. Their pioneering pressure containment system offers a significantly reduced press size and operates with outstanding integrity and durability. Modern design software, state-of-the-art hydraulics, and computer-driven controls provide us with the capability to produce seamless parts that are extremely lightweight, strong, and durable.
20inch Hydroform

This flexiblepress is fully programmable can be used interchangeably in the deep draw or fluid cell process mode. For deep drawn parts or those with curved geometries, the downward-acting bladder holds the material during pressurization as the tool is extended upward by a hydraulic punch cylinder. This draws the material into the bladder and allows it to flow as needed. By contrast, the fluid cell process allows the downward pressure of the bladder to form the material around the tool, allowing multiple parts to be run in a single cycle. 

Operating at up to 10,000 psi, this hydroform features and advanced control and hydraulic systems that allows us to precisely manage the forming pressure of punch travel, which facilitates the production of net-shaped parts. Its "open" feature enables our operators to visually inspect parts mid-cycle, after which they can either continue the cycle or abort in order to modify the recipe – a significant time saver in new part development projects.

Maximum punch tool diameter is 15", while draw depth capacity is 10". Outfitted with components from well-known names in industrial automation, it gives us the capability to for an extensive PM program.

This exceptional press provides us with a high-reliability solution for production of complex shapes for tight tolerance parts that need little to no finish work. Single tool technology dramatically lowers tooling costs, and process flexibility makes it an excellent choice for prototype and new product development projects. Our operators have a solid understanding of the hydroforming process as well as the technical skills to take advantage of the high-performance features this press has to offer, and we pass those benefits onto you.

Helander’s future plans are to expand our department with larger machinery to 32” hydroforming press and 1” thick spinning capacity. If you would like to be part of our plans, please contact us at spin@helandermetal.com

Download our eBook: Hydroforming Magnetic / Rotary Pumps


Tags: hydroforming, hydroforming illinois, sheet hydroforming