Disc Springs and Belleville Washers: What are the Differences and How to Choose

Disc Springs and Belleville washers are both types of conical spring washers. They are both made of spring steel and are designed to be loaded axially. However, there are some differences between the two. In this article, we will talk about the key differences of disc springs and belleville washers.

disc springs

What are the Disc Springs and Belleville Washers?

A Disc spring, also known as a Belleville washer or conical spring washer, is a conical-shaped spring that is designed to be loaded axially. It is made of spring steel and is typically used in applications where a large force is required with a small amount of deflection.

A Belleville washer, also known as a coned-disc spring, conical spring washer, disc spring, Belleville spring or cupped spring washer, is a conical shell which can be loaded along its axis either statically or dynamically. It is a type of spring shaped like a washer. It is the frusto-conical shape that gives the washer its characteristic spring.

Both the disc spring and belleville washer gets their springiness from their conical shape. When the disc spring is loaded axially, the outer edge of the disc or the washer is compressed while the inner edge is stretched. This creates a restoring force that resists the applied load.

The amount of force that a disc spring or belleville washer can generate is determined by its size, shape, and material. The larger the disc spring or the belleville washer, the more force it can generate. The steeper the conical shape, the more force the disc spring or the belleville washer can generate. The stiffer the spring steel, the more force the disc spring or the belleville washer can generate.

Belleville Washer

What are the differences between a Disc Spring and a Belleville Washer?

Here is a table summarizing the key differences between disc springs and Belleville washers:

FeatureDisc SpringBelleville Washer
ShapeFlat disc with a conical shapeCup-shaped washer with a conical shape
Force-deflection relationshipLinearNonlinear
ApplicationsLinear force-deflection relationship requiredLarge force with small deflection required
Space requirementsCan be largeSmall and lightweight
Disc Springs Display

How to Choose Between the Right Disc Springs and Belleville Washers?

The following are some factors to consider when selecting the right disc spring or Belleville washer for your application:

  • Force: The amount of force that the spring needs to generate.
  • Deflection: The amount of travel that the spring needs to allow.
  • Space requirements: The amount of space that the spring can take up.
  • Cost: The cost of the spring.
  • Durability: The ability of the spring to withstand wear and tear.
  • Sensitivity to manufacturing tolerances: The degree to which the spring’s performance is affected by manufacturing variations.
  • Ability to withstand overload: The ability of the spring to withstand being subjected to a force greater than its rated force.

Once you have considered these factors, you can start to narrow down your choices. If you need a spring with a linear force-deflection relationship, then a disc spring is a good choice. If you need a spring that is small and lightweight, then a Belleville washer is a good choice.

You can also consult a spring manufacturer to get their recommendations. They will be able to help you select the right spring for your specific application.

Here are some additional tips for selecting the right disc spring or Belleville washer:

  • Consider the environment in which the spring will be used. If the spring will be exposed to harsh conditions, such as high temperatures or corrosive chemicals, you will need to select a spring that is made from a material that can withstand those conditions.
  • Make sure that the spring is compatible with the other components in your application. The spring must be able to withstand the forces and stresses that it will be subjected to.
  • Get the spring from a reputable manufacturer or supplier. This will ensure that you get a quality spring that will meet your needs.

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