The Art of Flow Forming

The Art of Flow Forming

Flow Forming – What is it, and what makes it so special?

Hello again, wheel enthusiasts! Have you ever looked at the word 'Flow Forming' and thought to yourself; what the f*** does this mean? Well we're here to educate you with the least snore inducing words possible, so strap in.

First things first, let's break down the basics. Flow Forming, also known as spin forging, is a state-of-the-art manufacturing/wizardry process that combines the best of both worlds: precision engineering and advanced metallurgy. But how does it work, and what makes it great for wheel construction?

ifteen52 Flow Form

Unlike traditional wheel building methods like low-pressure casting or gravity casting, flow forming takes wheel craftsmanship to new heights. It begins with a cast wheel, and then heat and pressure is applied to its inner barrel while being spun. This process stretches and compresses the aluminum, which reduces weight while simultaneously increasing its tensile strength and shock resistance.

Originally developed in Sweden in the 1950’s to create metal vessels and containers, it’s now become a commonplace practice in metalwork far and wide. There are slight variations in the flow forming process, but they all come down to rotation, heat, and pressure. The combination of these things creates a wheel material with uniquely altered mechanical properties, giving it the strength of a forged wheel while still being extremely light. It's perfect for performance based wheel design, which is why we started flow forming in 2019 with our RSR wheels.

Now that we've nailed the basics, let's shift gears and get nitty gritty on why flow formed aluminum has become so commonplace in the wheel world.

fifteen52 Holeshot RSR

Lightweight Performance
One of the standout features of flow formed wheels is their featherweight design. By strategically redistributing metal during the spinning process, these wheels shed excess pounds without compromising strength. The result? Enhanced agility, improved fuel efficiency, and a smoother ride for adrenaline junkies and casual cruisers alike.

Strength to Weight Ratio
Picture this: the strength of a heavyweight contender packed into a lightweight frame. That's the magic of flow forming. By aligning the metal grains along the wheel's contours, this method maximizes strength where it matters most.

Precision Engineering
At fifteen52, we believe that every revolution counts. That's why our flow formed wheels undergo rigorous quality control measures, ensuring each spoke, lip, and barrel meets our exacting standards. From the drawing board to the blacktop, we're committed to delivering performance-driven perfection.

fifteen52 Holeshot RSR

The Flow Forming Landscape

Flow forming isn't just a one-size-fits-all solution. It's a versatile technique with a spectrum of applications. From Enkei's pioneering MAT process to our own signature innovations, the flow forming landscape is as diverse as the roads we drive.

While low pressure casting remains a staple in the wheel industry, flow forming offers a quantum leap in performance. By refining the metal's microstructure and enhancing tensile strength, flow formed wheels outshine their cast counterparts in both form and function.

In the world of wheel manufacturing, evolution is the name of the game. And at fifteen52, we're not just keeping pace - we're setting the standard. We've perfected flow forming, and found a way to extract the most out of a tried and true metal technology.

So, whether you're chasing podium finishes or cruising the open road, trust in fifteen52 to fuel your passion for performance. Unleash the flow, and let your wheels do the talking.