ASM Online Member Community

  • 1.  Structural Titanium Tubing?

    Posted 06-24-2021 07:41
    I have an item I would like to convert from HSLA steel to titanium for weight savings (and corrosion improvement.) The original design uses square tubing, 2x2"/50x50mm, in various thicknesses up to 0.25"/6mm. It needs to be Ti-6Al-4V or other alloy for strength (yield 100ksi/700MPa minimum). However, I do not find any suppliers with this relatively heavy wall, all the tubing out there seems to be round and thin walled, probably geared to chemical industry. Any suggestions out there? I am hoping to avoid a total redesign that would allow use of plate. And did I mention that since this is a prototype, I only need a small amount, although I would like to know about any sources should it go into production.

    Janine Borofka
    JLG Senior Chief Engineer - Materials
    Hagerstown MD United States

  • 2.  RE: Structural Titanium Tubing?

    Posted 06-25-2021 01:07
    Ti-6-4 is readily available for 3-D printing. Could definitely pursue that for a prototype and then maybe for production, too

    William Weimer
    Senior Metallurgist and Materials Engineer
    United States Coast Guard
    Virginia Beach VA

  • 3.  RE: Structural Titanium Tubing?

    Posted 06-26-2021 08:10
    Manufacturing Ti-64 square tubing at that thickness is challenging, since the alloy has limited cold formability. Additive manufacturing is an option, and Ti-64 is known to distort pretty badly in LPBF, so EPBF or DED are better options. You could machine it from bar (drilling the inside) or try finding a beta titanium alloy plate that could be cold formed and welded more readily. The beta alloys will require heat treatment knowledge and fixturing to form and weld without distortion.

    John Foltz
    ATI Specialty Materials

  • 4.  RE: Structural Titanium Tubing?

    Posted 06-29-2021 11:57
    Thanks all for helpful replies.
    My gut feeling is that AM wouldn't work since the prototype needs to pass some extreme load testing, but I will look into properties. ​

    Janine Borofka
    JLG Senior Chief Engineer - Materials
    Hagerstown MD United States

  • 5.  RE: Structural Titanium Tubing?

    Posted 06-30-2021 09:09
    Additional factors that must be considered when switching from steel to titanium:
    • titanium is anisotropic and properties are different in different directions
    • titanium has half the elastic modulus of steel 

    John Grubb

  • 6.  RE: Structural Titanium Tubing?

    Posted 06-30-2021 23:15
    For anyone looking for AM services using GMAW, Lincoln Electric has a facility dedicated to building parts on contract.  They can build everything from Invar to Aluminum bronze to titanium using robots and positioners.    Contact for services.

    For more sophisticated parts, Siacky is currently making parts using Electron Beam. Rick Sutherlin is a Ti consultant who is working with Sciaky currently involved in making titanium parts for ASME Boiler Code Section III (Nuclear) applications. 

    Walter Sperko
    Sperko Engineering Services Incorporated
    Greensboro NC
    (336) 674-0600