Testing Tensile Strength of Materials

Michael_M

Trusted Information Resource
#1
We are being told we have to test our material properties more often than before. Last year we purchased a decent XRF gun for chemistry, and we have had a hardness tester for a while now to check Rockwell hardness of material. One of the questions now is tensile strength of material. I have done some research but most of the information I pull up is 'we will sell you.....' or 'we can perform this test'.

Do any of you have any real information on how tensile strength is tested and do you send material out to be tested or do you do it internally. If you do it internally, what do you use to test the material?

The requirements use to be chemistry only and we use to send to an outside, accredited, lab but we are trying to streamline and reduce the costs by doing these internally where possible.

Thank you,

Off-topic--I wonder how much of these material testing requirement happened because of the Kobe Steel incident?
 
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Sidney Vianna

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Staff member
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#2
Do any of you have any real information on how tensile strength is tested and do you send material out to be tested or do you do it internally. If you do it internally, what do you use to test the material?
Tensile tests of metallic material is not an ordinary test; see below. You have to machine the specimens very carefully and the equipment is very specialized. Very few organizations have their own testing lab for this type of testing. You will likely be expected to send samples to be tested in ISO 17025 accredited AND Nadcap approved labs.

 

Marc

Hunkered Down for the Duration
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#3
I wonder how much of these material testing requirement happened because of the Kobe Steel incident?
I can't say, but I can say that way back in 1991 I was working with an automotive parts manufacturer and they had their own tester and it was a relatively small company. They used it for several things, including testing material coupons they got. They also has several holding fixtures for testing weld strength (essentially a "pull test").

As time (and advancements in science and technology) advance it will undoubtedly become more common for advanced measurement and material verification techniques to be required. Some of it will be from "learning" events as well.
 

Pancho

wikineer
Super Moderator
#4
Following Sidney’s comment, there are standard methods for testing various materials. For example, ASTM B557 specifies testing procedures for aluminum alloys and ASTM A370 for steel. We fabricate coupons to these standards and send them out to a certified lab to test.
 

Crusader

Trusted Information Resource
#5
I use a Tensile Tester at work on a weekly basis. We bought a Thwing-Albert tensile tester from "Thwing-Albert". Materials Testing Equipment
There are built-in templates in this tester and the company can heIp customize the type of template that best fits your needs. We test in a group of 6 test samples. The material we pull-test is vinyl material that we fabricate from a batch liquid formula. We test for tensile strength. The upper and lower grip hold onto the 4" long strip (1" wide) and the machine pulls the vinyl until it breaks, then the machine records the tensile strength, break elongation, and other data then charts it automatically. The data can be exported.

Soooo to answer your question, I believe some orgs can do the testing for you if they have the appropriate test template and machinery. I don't recall the cost of our machine if you're curious. It was a good investment though. It does provide that warm-fuzzy feeling that your process is consistent. And it will tell you if you stray out of consistency.
 
Last edited:

AYDOSE

Involved In Discussions
#6
We are being told we have to test our material properties more often than before. Last year we purchased a decent XRF gun for chemistry, and we have had a hardness tester for a while now to check Rockwell hardness of material. One of the questions now is tensile strength of material. I have done some research but most of the information I pull up is 'we will sell you.....' or 'we can perform this test'.

Do any of you have any real information on how tensile strength is tested and do you send material out to be tested or do you do it internally. If you do it internally, what do you use to test the material?

The requirements use to be chemistry only and we use to send to an outside, accredited, lab but we are trying to streamline and reduce the costs by doing these internally where possible.

Thank you,

Off-topic--I wonder how much of these material testing requirement happened because of the Kobe Steel incident?

Tensile tests of metallic material is commonly used in drawing process, tensile test crucial especially in hard drawn wire (bare, plated, alloy etc.)and every manufacturer has tensile testing machine (e.g: some of producers: Zwick, Instron, Shimadzu, in their internal lab. You can directly contact with equipment manufacturer to find optimum solution according your requirement like load cell, grip types ....
 

Ronen E

Problem Solver
Staff member
Moderator
#7
Tensile tests of metallic material is not an ordinary test; see below. You have to machine the specimens very carefully and the equipment is very specialized. Very few organizations have their own testing lab for this type of testing. You will likely be expected to send samples to be tested in ISO 17025 accredited AND Nadcap approved labs.
It all comes down to the application and the requirements. In some cases the above is true, but not in all cases. There is a great variety in available equipment (low end to the very top) and prices vary accordingly. I've seen many manufacturers who have tensile testing setups in-house.
I'm happy to help anyone look at the specifics and choose appropriate equipment. I'm a qualified mechanical engineer (all mechanical engineers have to study this topic including labwork, I think in year 1 or 2 IIRC).
Edit: Forgot to mention - I have no affiliation whatsoever with any company making or selling tensile testing equipment.
 
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