Tiny little springs
October 9, 2007 8:00 PM   Subscribe

boing! Anyone know where I can buy tiny springs (1mm outer diameter)?

I only need a few, so I expect the charges will be largely dominated by shipping, but I can't seem to find any tiny spring stores. I live in San Francisco, in the unlikely event that someone knows a place local.

I've already tried watch repair stores and fencing supply stores (epee travel springs are about two times too big)
posted by aubilenon to Shopping (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You could buy some fine music wire and wind your own by wrapping it around a 1mm rod, maybe:
Spring-making instructions
posted by sebastienbailard at 8:12 PM on October 9, 2007

Compression or extension springs? Small Parts has stainless steel instrument compression springs in small quantities with an outer diameter of 0.057in (1.4mm) in either 302 stainless or 316 stainless.
posted by RichardP at 8:20 PM on October 9, 2007

You probably have to go online. Lee Spring has catalog springs down to 1.4 mm outside diameter and they do custom springs as well; you could see if they would quote a 1 mm size.
posted by beandip at 8:21 PM on October 9, 2007

These are probably too big, but what about the springs that are inside retractable pens? My brother and I always used to break perfectly good pens to get to them and then attach them to 9-volt batteries to make the world's most dangerous hand-warmers.
posted by dondiego87 at 8:22 PM on October 9, 2007

Have you checked electronics parts and supply stores? There's a whole list of places here you could call and ask.
posted by Quietgal at 10:05 PM on October 9, 2007

Check at a good local locksmith shop. They should have an assortment of springs that will be small enough.
posted by calumet43 at 10:26 PM on October 9, 2007

I highly recommend smallparts.com.

McMaster Carr is another great source for this sort of thing, though they don't seem to have sizes like you'd like.

If this is a one-time thing, a source like American Science and Surplus might be just the ticket.
posted by fake at 10:38 PM on October 9, 2007

Wow, thanks for all the links. Yeah, I'm looking for compression springs.

Wrapping something around a 1mm rod would make a 1mm inner diameter. The 1mm outer diameter springs I have that are broken that I am trying to replace fit fairly snugly on a map pin. (It's from a watch clasp is why I tried a watch place).

If my locksmith can't come up with anything I'll try one of those 1.4mm springs and see if I can jam it in there. It's nearly half again too big though, but at least it's cheap.
posted by aubilenon at 11:32 PM on October 9, 2007

Handguns also have small springs. A local gun repair shop may be able to help.
posted by tayknight at 7:36 AM on October 10, 2007

posted by asavage at 7:58 AM on October 10, 2007

Try a gun shop. The Smith and Wesson 5986 9mm pistol has a REALLY small spring inside assembly for the firing pin that might be the right size. It's possible other firearms have similar springs too. I'm not saying I've ever seen such a thing at a gunsmith's, but it wouldn't suprise me.
posted by tiamat at 8:10 PM on October 10, 2007

What about the springs that are inside watch band pins?
posted by zsazsa at 10:36 PM on October 11, 2007

Ha, that's funny. I just came back here to recommend what zsazsa recommended. Congrats.
posted by fake at 11:53 AM on October 16, 2007

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