Tinius Olsen - Testing in Education
Leaf and Coil Spring Testing PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 29 June 2015 08:31













The debate over which is better between leaf springs and coil springs has a long history. Coil springs have been around for nearly a hundred years, yet the leaf spring's history dates back well over a thousand, so both have long proven their individual merits, but which is better will always be a point of contention. The answer largely boils down to the intended use and for the automotive industry it boils down to this:

A leaf spring suspension is made of a series of long, relatively thin sections of springy metal attached at both ends to a frame and suspending the axle in the middle. Coil springs look just like you would imagine a spring should, and sit between the top of the axle, or lower control arm, and the chassis. In terms of function, leaf spring suspensions are much simpler, since the axle is suspended by the spring, and do not require the complicated suspension geometry of coil-spring set-ups. Leaf springs are also much sturdier, and are capable of handling much larger loads, with less deflection, than coils. Trucks with leaf springs, as an example, are also easier to raise or lower.


Coil spring suspensions offer more range of suspension movement, and allow the user a wider tuning envelope through the suspension range than leaf springs. Practically all high performance applications use coil springs where possible, and budget permits. Coil spring suspensions usually perform better, because they have better engineered geometry than leaf springs.

The leaf springs' simplicity is as much a curse as a blessing. Since these springs attach at fixed points on the chassis, they give very little room for adjustability of the suspension’s geometry. These springs also flex a great deal less than coil springs, resulting in a loss of wheel-to-ground contact under extreme conditions. The two main drawbacks to a coil spring suspension are cost and load-bearing. Cost isn't so much an issue, if the vehicle was originally equipped with coil springs, but retro-fits can be very expensive and time consuming. Coils are not generally favored for very heavy vehicles, as the coil on axle setup isn't nearly as stable or strong as a proper leaf spring.


For heavy, industrial or budget-limited applications, leaf springs will usually do an acceptable job and prove themselves a durable choice. However, there are very few applications which will benefit from leafs over coils where performance is concerned.

Fortunately for us, Supreme Springs in Gauteng, South Africa make both types of spring, as well as torsion bars and stabilizer bars for trucks and automobiles. We also know that the quality of these springs is superior because of their superior quality control programs; Supreme Springs has just invested in more tensile testers from Tinius Olsen, again at 50kN capacity, to ensure that Supreme Springs, whether they be leafs or coils, are at the top of their game.

Compression of Stonewool Insulation PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 16 April 2015 10:51

Stonewool insulation is a mineral wool insulation product, manufactured from molten rock. It is a natural fibrous material, and has been widely recognized for decades for its thermal and sound insulating properties, as well as its excellent performance for the fire protection of lives and structures.  The use of technologically advanced machinery for the manufacture of stonewool insulation ensures stabilized production and superior quality final products.

Fibran SA, a part of the FIBRAN Group, produces stonewool insulation products with the brand name FIBRANgeo.  FIBRANgeo stonewool is produced from volcanic minerals such as basalt, limestone, dolomite, and bauxite. The minerals, as raw materials, are initially fused in an electric furnace and the vitreous melt is then spun into fibres. The maintenance of steady temperatures in the furnace enables the production of uniform stonewool fibres with excellent technical characteristics.  In addition, the levels of polluting sulfur and nitrogen oxide (SOX and NOX) gas emissions of the electric furnace are significantly lower than those of the blast method.


Once past the spinning phase, the loose stonewool fibres, with the addition of adhesive resin and special silicon compounds, acquire cohesiveness and hydrophobicity. Finally, FIBRANgeo stonewool Building Insulation products are formed in boards, rolls and loose fill in a variety of dimensions.  The above products may also be manufactured with facings. FIBRANgeo stonewool insulation products provide excellent thermal insulation, with a very low thermal conductivity coefficient and excellent thermal resistance even at high temperatures. The fibres’ softening temperature is over 1,000 °C and their binder starts to evaporate when its temperature exceeds 200 °C.  Therefore, FIBRANgeo stonewool insulation products are capable of withstanding high temperatures, up to 750 °C. These characteristics make FIBRANgeo products a perfect choice for thermal insulation, sound insulation and fire protection at construction projects.


At their headquarters in Greece, FIBRAN have added to their quality control testing lab with their recent purchase of a 10kN model 10ST tension and compression strength tester. The new machine will join their existing Tinius Olsen H10kT and model H10kS (seen here), and ensure consistent product quality.

Testing Extruded Polystyrene Insulation PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 15 April 2015 15:41

Polystyrene insulation is a type of rigid foam insulation which is commonly used in residential and commercial settings. It has an exceptional ability to insulate against noise and extreme temperatures, it is waterproof, and it has withstood the test of time. These qualities combine to make polystyrene insulation an exceptionally useful product.

As a thermoplastic polymer, polystyrene is in a solid (glassy) state at room temperature but flows if heated above about 100 °C, its glass transition temperature. It becomes rigid again when cooled. This temperature behavior is exploited for extrusion, and also for molding and vacuum forming, since it can be cast into molds with fine detail. Polystyrene (abbreviated to PS) is used for producing disposable plastic cutlery and dinnerware, CD "jewel" cases, smoke detector housings, license plate frames, plastic model assembly kits, and many other objects where a rigid, economical plastic is desired. Production methods for these products include thermoforming (vacuum forming) and injection molding.

Extruded polystyrene is suitable for a wide variety of applications, both in building construction and in industry, but primarily as thermal insulation due to its exceptional technical characteristics. Polystyrene from Fibran SA is produced with the use of environmentally friendly gases, and in accordance with the European requirements for sustainable materials and can be seen in their signature turquoise colour. Fibran uses extruded polystyrene to create a complete energy shield that protects against extreme temperatures and maintains its physical and chemical characteristics even after having been exposed to long-term loads and environments with increased humidity levels. FIBRANxps thermal insulation is supplied in boards as well as in composite prefabricated elements, combined with plain or water-resistant gypsum boards, white cement mortar and ceramic tiles.

To ensure continuing product quality, Fibran uses a 10kN Tinius Olsen dual column bench top machines to test the tensile strength, shear strength and compressive strength of their extruded polystyrene products and has recently increased their testing capabilities with the addition of a new model 10ST.

New Jersey’s Southern Regional School District Students Are Introduced to The Field of Materials Testing PDF Print E-mail
Monday, 09 March 2015 08:28

Tinius Olsen was invited to introduce some 7th /8th graders to the field of materials testing at the Southern Regional School District in Manahawkin, New Jersey last week. Regional salesperson Natalie Suchodolski took a low force testing machine and a bunch of commonly tested parts to the school and introduced students to the need to test products before they go to the market.

Says teacher Sue Stinson “They seemed to really enjoy the presentation and I can say for a fact that they have a new understanding as to the importance of materials testing, as well as possible career opportunities that were not in their previous mindset.”

“Given the fact that many of those students experienced home destruction by Superstorm Sandy,” continues Stinson, “and just the other day saw local damage due to an explosion, they see the need to testing the products on the market.”

Tinius Olsen at Arab Lab 2015, Dubai PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 25 March 2015 07:05

Tinius Olsen Regional Sales Manager Tahir Naseer is representing Tinius Olsen Ltd in Arab Lab 2015. For the first time in the history of Arab Lab, Tinius Olsen has put an independent booth. Before this the booth was shared with our Saudi distributor Sigma. Arab Lab 2015, a major attraction for visitor from across the Middle East region, was opened on 23rd March 2015 at Dubai International Convention & Exhibition Centre and will be concluding on 26th March 2015.















Tinius Olsen booth is well equipped with all range of machines & equipment. On display are Compression tester and Marshall Apparatus from Civil Engineering, Universal Hardness Tester, the very famous model of Melt Indexers, MP1200; and brand new 5ST, benchtop tension compression testing machine.

3D Printed Products Testing PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 27 February 2015 08:41

3D printing has evolved from science fiction to science fact and promises to be an exciting and rapidly expanding market. 3D printing enables engineers to check the fit of different parts long before they commit to costly production; architects to show detailed and relatively low-cost scale models to their clients; and, perhaps most exciting, allows medical professionals to handle full-size, 3D objects printed from 3D scan data. There are also a wide range of educational uses. To date such products include automobiles, trainers, jewellery, plastic toys, coffee makers, and all sorts of plastic bottles, packaging and containers. Some dental labs have been using 3D printers to help create appliances for use in the creation of crowns, bridges and temporaries.

3D printing (also called Additive Manufacturing) uses successive layers of material which are laid down under computer control. The term's original sense refers to processes that sequentially deposit material onto a powder bed with inkjet printer heads. More recently the term’s meaning of the term has expanded to encompass a wider variety of techniques such as extrusion and sintering based processes and can use polymers or metals as the printed product.

As 3D products are becoming more common, one concern rises from the strength of the finished product and its ability to withstand tensile, compression, or impact forces of the real world applications. These properties are especially critical when they involve medical applications. To address this concern,  a recent start-up company has taken the proverbial bull by the horns and invested in an impact tester,  Tinius Olsen model  IT504, to ensure that the products they print can withstand the impact of daily life.


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