Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 31
  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    85

    Making the drivetrain harder by steaming

    Hello, I'm from Belgium and at the moment we are testing some chains and cassettes witch a friend of me made harder at his workplace by steaming them.

    Beginning
    First we started with the 4 small wheels from an XT cassette to test it.
    The wheels came out blue and they seem harder.


    Testing and mesuring
    this is a normal wheel being tested.
    The normal wheels are also not equaly hardned.


    And then a wheel witch was steamed


    Riding it
    To be really sure we tested some of these wheels and came to the conclusion that we could ride 50 to 75% longer with a cassette we steamed.

    More parts
    Because it worked we also started steaming chains


    and whole road cassettes


    Future
    In the future we want to test more materials and parts.
    Steel chainrings like the Deore's we could steam.
    And I'm sure there are a lot more possibilities

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: billee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    436
    You used the term "steaming" yet the parts look like they have been subjected to temperatures much higher that "steam" . Did you mean "hardened" and/or "tempered" ?

    Making the parts harder will probably reduce wear but they will probably be more brittle (easier to crack or break).

  3. #3
    banned
    Reputation: Jerk_Chicken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    16,480
    That's interesting. I too am wondering about the translation and "steaming".

    Additionally, we likely also have to test the long term wear of the items. While paradoxically can increase the hardness of an item, sometimes wear can actually be increased due to a variety of factors, especially with meshing items, along with affecting resistance to cracking (generally at the expense of bending).

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    85
    Quote Originally Posted by billee
    You used the term "steaming" yet the parts look like they have been subjected to temperatures much higher that "steam" . Did you mean "hardened" and/or "tempered" ?

    Making the parts harder will probably reduce wear but they will probably be more brittle (easier to crack or break).
    I was told that de steam who did this was about 600C.
    I think the brittle thing was also tested but I'm not shure about it.
    I'll give an answer to that as soon as I know.
    But I'm leaving on holiday no so you have to wait till the 12th of April

  5. #5
    banned
    Reputation: Jerk_Chicken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    16,480
    Do you speak German, by any chance? If you do, then maybe I can translate a bit and see where there is a Missverstaendnis.

    "Steam" bedeutet "Dampf"

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    85
    No, sorry I'm from Belgium.
    But I understand some German and I really mean steam.

    Normaly the machine is used to steam parts whitch have been sintered.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sintering
    After the sintering they need a hard coating. The coating also helps against corrosion.

  7. #7
    banned
    Reputation: Jerk_Chicken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    16,480
    There's nothing in that article that mentions "steaming", other than the reference of what some treated metals are used for. The rest is sintering. I am wondering if this is some evaporative coating and that is being indicated as "steaming". I still maintain there is a mistranslation in this. In English, "steaming" will mean using hot water vapor, and at 600 degrees...there are a lot more things to overcome unless you're using a lot of pressure in a capsule. Unless of course, water was added to an already heated source and that was somehow channeled to the item, but that still creates some issues that don't go inline directly with the laws of thermodynamics.

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: itsdoable's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,874
    Steam is H2O (water) in gaseous phase, in that phase it can be heated to any temperature until it reaches a plasma phase. 600C is no problem for water vapour.

  9. #9
    banned
    Reputation: Jerk_Chicken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    16,480
    Is that what they're actually doing is my question?

    I didn't say that this can't be done, but I'm asking if it was what was done.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    85
    As I said before, it is done by A friend. Al I know is that the machine uses steam at about 600C and that the parts have to be in the machine for about 3 hours.
    Steam at 100C wouldn't give that nice blue collor I thing
    But I don't know any specifics about the process. ( I'm an IT nerd )

    I've used/tested the parts and they work perfect for me.
    I'll have all my cassettes steamed by him as long as he works there.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    1,494
    Under sufficient pressure super heated steam can easily run into that temperature range . I'm not familiar with heat-treating with steam, though most of the steels I'm familiar with would be annealed rather than hardened at that temperature range.

    In any case, it isn't only a matter of making things harder and more wear resistant. There is the alternate problem of toughness. As steel gets harder the risk of brittle fracture goes up markedly, and as anyone who's ever broken a chain can attest, it isn't fun. Nor is it fun for component makers who have to deal with the resultant lawsuits.
    fb
    www.chain-L.com

    The key to solving any problem is to understand and address the underlying cause.

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    63
    The chain is super !!
    Used it 2500km, the test is so far excellent !
    The runout time is way higher than the normal chain.


    The cassettes are also good, but the difference with the normal cassette is 10% a 20%maximum.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    902

    Kill this thread

    This thread should be killed it doesn't make any mechanical sense until the term "steaming" is defined. Every common metal or alloy has a technical data sheet evaluating its properties at a given hardness and the heating, quenching and tempering method used to achieve those hardness's. If it's a plating or coating the data also already exists on how and what it should be used on. You can bet that shimano or sram drivetrain engineers have already evaluated all this and arrived at the conclusion of what hardness and alloy works best for their mass produced parts and also evaluated their cost restraints.

    That chain would scare me. I'll bet the pins are a different alloy than the links and any lube that was in it, at that temp, would have been burned off.
    If you're not falling, then you're not riding fast enough!
    Ibex Asta Pro SE & Giant XTC-2

  14. #14
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    85
    Yes offcourse the lube is gone but I don't see a problem with that.
    How many people put their chain in petrol to clean it?
    Most (if not all) the lube is gone then to.
    I put my chains in chainsaw lube after I cleanded them.
    I hang them so most of the chainsaw oil can drip out, clean the chain with a towel and put them back on my bike.

    Endorfin who replied here is the person who did the steaming at his work.
    I hope he can give you more information since I'm not a technical person (at that level)

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: sooner518's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Posts
    1,556
    I held my chain up to a steam iron for 5 minutes today while I was ironing some shirts. It is now 5-10 times stronger!

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Posts
    85
    Nice iron if it can produce steam of 600C

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    13
    What type of parts do they usually produce?

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    113
    From what I read, steam heat-treament intended for surface hardening before machining of sintered metals, or that it really helps during machining. It hardens the surface but produces rust or oxides of that nature. What it doesn't do is strengthen the material all the way thru... That's fine and dandy till the part rusts up I suppose.

    There's some really techy speak on the application, but from what I gather it seems really pointless for bikes.

    Formation of FeO, which starts at about 560 C. On cooling, FeO decomposes into Fe3 O4 and Fe. This decomposition leads to a spongy surface structure which, in addition to a markedly reduced corrosion resistance, also leads to a voluminous connecting layer during the subsequent heat treatment, and thus especially to a deterioration in the dimensional stability.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    1,494
    Quote Originally Posted by sooner518
    I held my chain up to a steam iron for 5 minutes today while I was ironing some shirts. It is now 5-10 times stronger!
    Not necessarily -- Did you use starch?
    fb
    www.chain-L.com

    The key to solving any problem is to understand and address the underlying cause.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    1,326
    Steam-treating is a common industrial process using high-temperature steam to form a thin layer of iron oxide on the surface of steels. It's usually done for corrosion resistance since the oxide layer is uniform. While the oxide layer would be very hard (it's a ceramic), it's very thin (only a micron or two max). The Rockwell C (HRC) measurement in the second and third pics would not detect this thin layer since HRC would penetrate ~200 microns or so.

    In my opinion, you would be unlikely to detect a difference in wear rate...at the highly loaded points, the oxide film would quickly be worn thru, especially since the underlying steel is not hard enough to support the thin layer. Where steam treating is done for wear resistance, it's applied on top of a nitrided layer (the nitrided case provides support underneath).

    http://sunsteeltreating.com/steamtreating.html

    Here's a process that steam treats over a nitrided case for wear and friction purposes.
    http://sunsteeltreating.com/ionwear.html

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    902
    As I said kill this thread it's a waste of time, space and energy.
    If you're not falling, then you're not riding fast enough!
    Ibex Asta Pro SE & Giant XTC-2

  22. #22
    NMBP
    Reputation: crashtestdummy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    1,979
    Quote Originally Posted by baraant
    As I said kill this thread it's a waste of time, space and energy.
    Well quit reading it maroon, I find it interesting.
    Riding Fat and still just as fast as I never was.

  23. #23
    banned
    Reputation: Jerk_Chicken's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    16,480
    Quote Originally Posted by saiko
    Yes offcourse the lube is gone but I don't see a problem with that.
    How many people put their chain in petrol to clean it?
    Most (if not all) the lube is gone then to.
    I put my chains in chainsaw lube after I cleanded them.
    I hang them so most of the chainsaw oil can drip out, clean the chain with a towel and put them back on my bike.

    Endorfin who replied here is the person who did the steaming at his work.
    I hope he can give you more information since I'm not a technical person (at that level)
    So far he hasn't. You two have been asked for more info on the process, and you said he'll answer and he has visited the site, posted here, and said essentially nothing.

    I have to conclude that this whole thing is some sort of farce, with the intent of trying to get some spam out of mtbr.

    I have an interest in knowing more, but this seems a lot like the fabled Stanley Meyer water-powered car that never existed.
    Last edited by Jerk_Chicken; 04-16-2009 at 08:10 AM.

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    1,494
    Quote Originally Posted by baraant
    As I said kill this thread it's a waste of time, space and energy.
    Threads about what doesn't work, are as valuable as threads about what does. They save time that would be wasted exploring dead ends. If space and energy are so valuable for you, don't add your useless, nonsense post to the thread.
    fb
    www.chain-L.com

    The key to solving any problem is to understand and address the underlying cause.

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Posts
    1,494
    Quote Originally Posted by Jerk_Chicken
    I have an interest in knowing more, but this seems a lot like the fabled Stanley Meyer water-powered car that never existed.
    I agree, but that's the beauty of internet forums. Yes, they do offer exposure to scammers and spammers, but on the other hand expose them to the bright light of public scrutiny.
    fb
    www.chain-L.com

    The key to solving any problem is to understand and address the underlying cause.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •