Methods for the identification of aircraft tubing of plain carbon steel and chromium-molybdenum steel

W. H. Mutchler, R. W. Buzzard
naca-tn-350
Oct 1930


The survey of the possibilities for distinguishing between plain carbon and chromium-molybdenum steel tubing included the Herbert pendulum hardness, magnetic, sparks, and chemical tests. The Herbert pendulum test has the disadvantages of all hardness tests in being limited to factory use and being applicable only to scale-free, normalized material. The small difference in the range of hardness values between plain carbon and chromium-molybdenum steels is likewise a disadvantage. The Rockwell hardness test, at present used in the industry for this purpose, is much more reliable. It may be concluded on the basis of the experiments performed that of all methods surveyed, spark testing appears to be, at present, the most suitable for factory use from the standpoint of speed, accuracy, nondestructiveness and reliability. It is also applicable for field use.

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