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Low-distortion steels thanks to controlled stress-relief annealing

When parts are being manufactured in large volumes, even a small increase in the unit cost can generate a significant increase in overall costs. That’s why high-volume producers need to pay particular attention to keeping per-part costs down. Critically, they need to select a steel that shows uniform machining behavior and high dimensional stability even for asymmetrically configured parts. Our steels meet these criteria.

When producing our HSX® and ETG® steels we work with large drawing forces. If the resulting residual stresses in the material are released in an uncontrolled manner during the later processing stages, the manufacturer will have a problem, with long, spindle-shaped components in particular tending to deviate from the tight geometrical tolerances required. The financial implications can be serious, particularly for large-volume producers.

Reliable manufacturing processes with predictable costs

To help our customers avoid these problems, we can adapt our production processes as needed. By carefully controlling the stress relief temperature, we are able to reduce the residual stresses introduced during the drawing process to very low levels. The resulting steels show very little tendency to distortion.

By partnering with Steeltec, our customers can count on working with low-distortion materials that ensure a consistent and reliable component manufacturing process. As a result, unit costs in large-volume series production runs can be kept low and remain predictable at all times.

Using this approach, we are also able to prime the material to the operational temperature that the component will later be exposed to in use. The exact temperature range depends on the material and the manufacturing technology used. Get in touch if you would like to learn more. We would be pleased to advise you on the options available and on which process is best for you.

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Thanks to our deep understanding along the entire value chain, we can tailor our production precisely to your material requirements, thus contributing to your market success.

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Cold formability



Chain manufacturing


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Yield strength

Low distortion


Dynamic loads

Additional processing

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Surface finishing



Quenching and tempering



Steel Groups


Fits Best

Free cutting steel Soft free cutting steel
Free cutting steel
Case hardening steel
Case hardening steel With lead
Case hardening steel Unalloyed case hardening steel
Cold heading steel
Chain steel
Construction steel
Quenched and tempered steel
Quenched and tempered steel Unalloyed quenched and tempered steel with lead
Cold heading steel SwissBain
ETG 88 High strength special steel
ETG 100 High strength special steel
HSX 90 High strength special steel
HSX 110 High strength special steel
HSX 130 High strength special steel
HSX Z10 High strength special steel
HSX Z12 High strength special steel
ETG 25 Cold heading steel
ESP 65 Case hardening steel
SwissCut Free cutting steel

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Will the part or component be machined?

Around 85% of the costs in parts manufacturing are attributable to process costs. It is therefore worthwhile to optimize these costs with the targeted use of materials. Steeltec free-cutting steels are optimized for machining. Steeltec has also developed high-strength special products with outstanding machining properties. Short chip breaking, longer tool life and high uniformity across batches open up new possibilities in the design of manufacturing processes.

More about machining

Will the part or component be subjected to particular large stresses?

Materials for highly stressed parts must not only be outstandingly machinable, but also withstand high loads. A typical load - for hydraulic components, for example - is dynamic stress. To withstand it, users need a steel with a good ratio of strength and toughness.

More about static and dynamic loading

Will an additional heat-treatment stage be carried out?

Thanks to in-depth chemical analysis, Steeltec is able to design materials in such a way that desired mechanical-technological component properties are achieved after heat treatment. This results in a wide range of high-quality steel designed to meet individual customer requirements. In the bright steel sector, we will be pleased to advise you on what needs to be taken into account in the case of additional hardening.

More about heat treatment

Will the part or component be welded?

Welding is particularly important for chains and structural grades, but also for applications such as the manufacture of wire baskets. Steeltec's rolled steels can be welded using various techniques. Welding requires materials that are alloyed. In addition, just as in bending, the steel needs a certain hardness, but it must be possible to machine it. And it must be possible to heat it without creating too much stress.

More about weldability

Our low-distortion steel families ETG® and HSX®

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Paolo Berti - Head of Customer Service Rolled Steel

Dirk Ochmann - Head of Customer Service Bright Steel