Brittle Rupture of a Chain Sling
While a chain sling was being used to lift a casting one of the links ruptured. The sling, reputed to be of the electrically-welded steel type, was at least eight years old and had been overhauled several times during its working life. Examination showed the links were scarf-welded. Furthermore, the welds were at the ends and not at the sides as is usual in the case of electrically-welded chains. A transverse section from one side of a link was examined microscopically. This showed the material to be wrought-iron of satisfactory quality. It was concluded this chain sling had been made from wrought-iron, forge welded in the usual manner, and that it was not electrically-welded steel as had been supposed. Failure was attributed to embrittlement in service of the surface material of the links. If it had been realized that the sling was made from wrought-iron then it would doubtless have been subjected to periodical annealing in accordance with Statutory requirements, which would have restored the ductility of the surface material.