Belleville washers – big power, small space 28 August 2018

When an application calls for high spring loading in a small space, Lee Spring believes that Belleville washers can often be the complete spring solution.

Lee Spring explains that the Belleville washer’s conical configuration enables it to support high loads with relatively small deflections and solid heights compared to a helical spring. That is why Belleville washers are often used to solve vibration, thermal expansion, relaxation, and bolt creep problems.

While Belleville washers can be used individually they are generally stacked in multiple cylinder or column configurations – for instance all in parallel, all stacked opposite alternately or a combination of the two with multiples stacked alternately face-to-face.

Lee Spring points out that in this way a single Belleville spring washer has a specific load for a given deflection. Two washers stacked in parallel will yield double the load of a single washer for the same deflection; three washers will yield triple the load; four washers will yield four times the load, etc. Alternatively, two washers stacked in series will yield double the deflection of a single washer for the same load; three washers will yield triple the deflection; four washers will yield four times the deflection, etc. Various series-parallel combinations therefore can provide a wide variety of combined results of load versus deflection for the stack.

Consequently, depending upon the application, the designer can stack in ‘parallel’ to increase load, stack in ‘series’ to increase deflection, or adjust the load and deflection of a washer stack by adding or removing individual washers and/or the sequence in which they are used, whether in series or parallel.

Claire Aldridge Deputy Editor t: +44 (0) 1727 814 450

Having joined the magazine in 2012, Claire developed her knowledge of the industry through the numerous company visits, exhibitions and conferences she attended both in the UK and abroad.

Responsible for social media and the online platforms, Claire prides herself on keeping readers well informed and up to date with the latest industry news.