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Bend spring steel frame rod

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Nicole

Guest
hello all,
I am living in banff, Alberta. I bought a new backpack, it has a spring steel rod frame. Problem is I am short and the size of the back pack is xtra small yet the rod pushes against the back if my head while I am hiking.
I want to bend it about an inch so it doesn't hit my head. My understanding is that spring steel needs to be heated to bend it and that is not something I can do myself given the lack of tools and knowledge.

Is there someone in Canmore or banff who can help me?
 

PeterT

Ultra Member
Premium Member
The issue is: spring steel needs to be heated to a specific (annealed) temperature with a torch or similar so that it becomes ductile & can be bent to your desired shape. If you try to bend it as-is, chances are it will yield, weaken or break. Hard to guess the outcome without seeing where 'an inch' is. So assuming it was heated & re-shaped, that's the relatively easy part. The challenge is you now have a soft metal state that has lost its strength & springiness (at minimum in that area where heat was applied but likely also further down the rod by conduction). So the ideally the original heat treat & tempering procedure would have to be replicated to give it back its properties. Typically that requires a quench bath & specific temperature monitoring which was probably the original manufacturing process. I'm not saying this is 'for sure' but generally how semi-hardened spring steel parts are made. Yes, some pics might help understand what's involved.

This can get overly technical but check out this YouTube vid for a simple overview: Tempering spring steel, blacksmithing, bushcraft, forge

I wonder if the mountaineering shops can give you some advice, or are you already past this point?
 
N

Nicole

Guest
Thank you for your responses! I really appreciate it! It sounds much more difficult than I had thought it would be and considering the price I paid and having no guarantees the metal will remain strong... I have decided to return the pack. Thank you again for the help and now I know to not buy a pack with spring steel unless it is a perfect fit
 
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