Differences Between Gas Struts, Shocks and Springs
Gas springs are sometimes referred to as gas struts or gas shocks. These terms are more or less interchangeable in the gas spring industry. But their differences are important when understanding how gas springs work and how to use them properly.
A strut is typically a rigid rod that provides structural support to the object it is mounted on. It may allow for minor movement but a gas strut is not intended as an assist in lifting or moving something like a gas spring is. Gas struts offer outwards-facing support and can be used to keep two other components separate. Gas struts have many applications, including: automobiles, architecture, construction and aircrafts.
A shock is a term used more commonly for a device meant to absorb vibration or other movement and return something to its original position. It also does not typically provide assistance in lifting like a gas spring will but they are designed to take quick, repeated movements without failure. They provide both force and damping at the same time.
Note: Gas springs may also be referred to as gas struts, gas props, gas shocks, gas lifts or gas dampers depending on the industry and application.
A true gas spring is designed to be used as a lift assist device to open a door, lid, or hatch. Gas springs can also be used as a counterbalance or motion control device either with or without minor damping. They are not to be cycled more than a few times per minute and must not be over-extended, over-compressed, or shock loaded at a faster rate than they are designed for.
While using any of these terms to describe our gas spring products is normal, it is important to keep in mind how a gas spring is designed to work and its limitations. If what you need is a product that operates more like the description for a strut or shock then a different product would be needed.
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