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Grades of Hi Ten steel

Old 04-18-17, 07:41 PM
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bcpriess
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Grades of Hi Ten steel

Specifically, I am interested in understanding the differences between Femco 1207, and the standard 1020 grades we see all over the place, as well as other grades and their specific properties and comparison of mechanical properties. This isn't a cromo versus hiten thread, so please don't hijack it, because that isn't what I am interested in.
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Old 04-18-17, 08:01 PM
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When I search for Femco 1207, all I find is bicycle related links. I always took those hiten/other stickers on bikes as a smokescreen to avoid admitting they just went out and bought the cheapest steel they thought they could get away with. I'm pretty sure nobody in this forum builds with hiten steel, it's just not worth messing with as a practical and financial matter. I looked into it because I wanted to make something out of tubing and wanted to reduce my price. 4130 won.

As far as mechanical properties go, a steel tube is pretty much a steel tube. It really comes down to diameters and butting profiles, if any. Produce two steel tubes with the same geometry, and there will be only tiny differences in the mechanical properties. Better steel can be made into thinner tubes. That's about all there is to it. I know you were hoping for more, but that's probably a better subject for a Classic & Vintage bull session than a thread in here.
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Old 04-18-17, 08:37 PM
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I suspect you'll have a hard time finding much more then general info about Femco 1207. There's a very good chance you'll find out it's a trade name for a product targeted for the bike industry and not a reference to a specific alloy.


Of course one way to find properties out is to take a sample to a testing lab and pay them. Andy.
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Old 04-18-17, 10:11 PM
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FEMCO stands for Far East Machinery Company. They make golf club shafts. If they made shovels and rakes, you could call them the True Temper of Taiwan. So this is a proprietary material designator. Not sure if they would tell you anything about it, it may cross to an industry standard
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Old 04-24-17, 10:42 AM
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http://www.metalsuppliersonline.com/...1&Mechanical=1

Here's a data sheet I found for 1215 steel. I don't know if this has any bearing on Femco 1207, but it's in the carbon steels camp, and the important thing is the "2" digit seems to indicate the presence of Manganese. For what that's worth. Manganese steels appear to be a hardening agent, maybe a self-lubricating agent of some sort? I don't have the matallurgical knowledge to speak to this.
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Old 04-24-17, 02:38 PM
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email@fareastmachinery.com
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Old 04-24-17, 02:42 PM
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Even if the chemistry between two steels was identical, it would stand to reason that steel drawn for bikes would be drawn over a mandrel so as to reduce machining costs, and that would change it structural characteristics due to work hardening. So be sure you get the full picture.
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Old 04-25-17, 09:06 AM
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I did email that address a week ago...no response.

MassiveD - do you have any understanding of how Manganese might affect carbon steel in the context of a frame, or in the context of drawing and work hardening as you pointed out? I don't.
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Old 04-25-17, 09:34 PM
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My understanding of steel alloying and the resulting properties is not from the schooling side of life but from years of reading and talking with those who did. So if others suggest my ideas are wrong then maybe I'll learn more now.


Manganese, as found in 531 steel, helps the mechanical working of the steel during the drawing and swedging processes. IIRC England had colonies with MN resources back in the years between the great wars. But Chromium as found in 4130 is more agreeable with heat treating during the tubing processing. And I am of the understanding that Italy had chromium sources during the same period. If this is so the no wonder Reynolds touts their working of the steel and Columbus holds their heat treating as superior. Andy
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Old 04-26-17, 02:58 PM
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Local industry adapted for local conditions. Makes sense to me.

I found the mechanical properties of 1215, 1020, and 4130 online, and the key difference I see is that for 1020, tensile strength is about 60k psi. For 1215, it is about 80k psi. For 4130, it is about 100k psi. So if 1215 is any proxy for 1207, it has 33% more tensile strength than regular hiten, and 80% of the tensile strength of cromo, which is 67% greater tensile strength than regular 1020, versus 25% stronger than 1215. Am I making a naive assumption that 1207 might be in the same ballpark as 1215? Also more searching reveals that 12xx metals are resulphurized and rephosphorized for machinability, and although they have manganese is is below the 1.5% threshold required for it to be classified as a Manganese steel, which is the 13xx steels. All of which seems to indicate that Femco 1207 *might* be a significant step up from your typical hiten materials. Or not.
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Old 04-27-17, 05:50 AM
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it's really tough to make that kind of judgement unless you know the specific properties of a steel alloy. And with the lower strength steels, there can be a big range in mechanical properties. Like a factor of 2 on the ultimate. So I wouldn't make any assumptions. Now, if there were certs, that would be different. But as I said in one of my previous posts, I find most of the low-end bicycle steels to be somewhat suspicious
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