NEW TECHNOLOGY!!! Case Depth Results less than 1 Minutes with NO Sample Prep!

King Tester_Brinell Tester_Rockwell Tester_Metal Hardness Testing_CaseRock
King Tester_Brinell Tester_Rockwell Tester_Metal Hardness Testing_CaseRock

New Technology : Case depth can now be measured quickly and accurately in less than a minute without time-consuming sample preparation using continuous-acquisition testing.


Case hardness matters in so many applications, from aerospace to automotive to machine tools and military to name a few. However, measurement of case depth is limited by current testing because testers used today require a time-consuming process of cutting, mounting and sample polishing to be able to perform sequential microhardness tests that describe the case depth of the sample. The elapsed time from start to finish is measured in hours.

These limitations are eliminated by the CaseRock® HTD (tester), which offers significant innovations in case-depth testing measurement. It uses a Rockwell-type approach with continuous-acquisition testing to determine the hardness of the metal throughout the case and provide effective case-depth results in under a minute. The tester eliminates the need for cutting, mounting, polishing and sequential tests. It uses full-load testing with force up to 4,000 kg (8,820 pounds). The benefits of continuous-acquisition testing are evident in the time savings and opportunities for rapid process-control feedback.

The benefits of CaseRock HTD’s continuous-acquisition testing include:

  • Faster results
  • Reduce sample preparation time by eliminating cutting, mounting and polishing
  • Reduce testing time from hours to minutes
  • Improve process control with real-time information


How it Works

Fig. 4. Hardness and force data from continuous-acquisition testing

The CaseRock HTD is designed to test the effective case depth of surface-hardened layers with only one indentation and without damaging the integrity of the part. The tester uses a conical indenter of 120 degrees and a tip radius of 0.2 mm, a penetrator shroud to reference the penetration depth and a transducer for measuring the penetrator displacement with respect to the shroud.

The tester applies a constantly increasing load up to 4,000 kg and acquires hardness data. The data is displayed as specific hardness at multiple levels of force (Fig. 4). A proprietary, patented algorithm processes the information from force and depth obtained to deliver the value of the effective case depth and the schematic curve (Fig. 5) of the hardened surface layer. The absolute hardness values are then converted into Vickers hardness numbers according to standard conversion tables. 


Test Results

Fig. 5. Case-depth results and analysis

The tester uses the information acquired from the continuous application of the load to generate a load-penetration curve (not a single value) from each single test. Figure 4 provides an example of the test results. The vertical axis is hardness, and the horizontal axis is the load applied. The downward curve in this example illustrates that hardness declines as force (Kgf) is applied.

The data acquired is then used in the algorithm to calculate the effective case depth (Fig. 5). In this instance, the effective case depth is 2.95 mm (Vickers 513 corresponds to a hardness of Rockwell C 50). The results of these tests are referenceable to all applicable standards.

p>Figure 6 shows a different example of test results, this time on the computer screen. In this example, the case depth is 0.37 mm.



This type of testing allows users to achieve test results and analysis much faster with savings of manpower, time and money. The process-control opportunities are profound because information is available so much faster than with previous testing machines. Users can choose to tighten their process controls and increase their quality sampling.

The test results reduce uncertainty and provide for improved supplier/customer communication while reducing waste and improving throughput. Cost savings are achieved through both reduction in sample preparation and testing time as well as reduction in product rejects.

With increasing emphasis in all industries on quality, tightening of standards and process control, the CaseRock HTD is a logical value-added measurement and analysis tool for commercial and captive heat treaters. It provides an opportunity to demonstrate case-depth consistency and decrease uncertainty while reducing the cost and time involved in case-depth measurement.

Authored by Jim Knight for Industrial Heating Magazine.


We use our King portable testers on a daily basis in 100 degree heat and freezing cold temperatures at many different angles, even upside down, and the quality and reliability is unmatched.

I find it amazing that a device originally designed and patented in 1936 is still the mainstay of hardness testing for most shops.  Not many products that are in existence in this day and age like that.  True testimony of what a well thought out product it is.

So you think your sac is leaking
And there is fluid on your ball 
Don’t do anything drastic 
Just remember who to call
When your ram gets too extended
Yea, its maybe not your fault
Your pump handle just sheared off
We can probably fix it 
Even if your screws are bending
It’s time to have yours services
And to use the one we’re sending

–  Bill Daley, King Tester Renaissance Man 

King Tester, A Poem

Posted on 23Aug


Don’t hurt your back
Leave the steel on the rack
Just slide it an inch
And let the King take a pinch
You’ll work smarter, not harder
And beat the rest to the door
You can test on a bench
Or right off the floor
Just clamp on the tester
In any direction
The mark that it makes
Will help your selection
Next check the wall chart
And then you will know
If the steel that you have
Is ready to go
So get the right tool for the job
One you know you can trust
You’ll be finished in minutes
And your back, you won’t bust
King: We got your back

– Bill Daley, King Tester Renaissance Man

I really appreciated the tremendous customer service.

Innovation in Case Depth Measurement

Posted on 01Aug

Innovation in Case Depth Measurement

Effective case depth measurement is essential to our everyday lives.  Can you imagine if the gears in your car weren’t properly tested for case hardness? Case hardness is a time consuming task with all the preparation is required, but it does not have to be.  You can get an effective case depth measurement in a minute.


KingScopeKingScope 100KingScan IVe
Brinell Hardness Testing Reader: Manual or Automatic

Posted on 31Jul

Reading Brinell Impressions

The first thing to consider when choosing a Brinell reading device is: how accurate a Brinell Reading you need and then consider if you want to read the impression manually or automatically?   Is a reading to the nearest tenth of a mm sufficient or do you need greater accuracy in your readings?

Manual reading is easy and straightforward.  You look through the lenses, focus the optics, position in the lens on the impression and read the result in mm.  The result in mm is then converted to HBW (Hardness Brinell) by looking up the mm measurement and the table provides the hardness.

Automatic reading uses a digital camera which shoot the image and does the calculations for you and tells you the diameter of the impression in mm and also the HBW (Hardness Brinell) number.  Automatic readers reduce the opportunity for human error and provide greater precision in the readings with readings measured to the .01mm. They also eliminate the need for the Brinell table lookup because the automatic reader does the calculation for you and provides you the Brinell hardness level.

Manual is easier and less expensive up front.  However, the other consideration is the potential for human error and the reproduce-ability of results.  The human eye and interpretation play a much larger role in handheld results than in automatic results and the time savings may justify the purchase of an automated reading device.  Additional considerations come from the ASTM E10 specification which defines two types of devices; type A and type B. 

ASTM E10 Considerations

KingScope Brinell Hardness Testing
kingscope100 Brinell Hardness Testing
KingScope 100


Automatic Microscope for Brinell Hardness Testing

Measurement Device

The measurement device used for the measurement of the diameter of Brinell indentations may be an integral part of the hardness machine or a separate stand-alone instrument. The allowable measurement devices are classified into two types.

Type A 

The Type A device includes microscopes having movable measuring lines with some type of indicator or computerized measuring system, or an image analysis system.

Type B 

The Type B device is a hand-held microscope with fixed measuring lines. Type B devices shall not be used for measuring indentations made with 2.5 mm and 1 mm ball indenters.

Note the limitations on the use of handheld scopes as it pertains to smaller indentations.

King Tester Readers 

King offers both handheld and automatic reading systems.  We have two Type A devices; the KingScan which is computerized and fully automatic and the KingScope 100 which is handheld.  For Type B handheld we offer the KingScope which has been and continues to be the industry preference for a handheld reader.

Choosing the Right Test Block

Posted on 31Jul

Choosing the Right Test Block : Many people operate under a misconception they must use a test block equivalent in hardness to the parts or samples they are testing.  This is not the case. While it is wise to choose a test block within a reasonable range of the same hardness you do not need to match the hardness exactly.  The Test Block is used to indirectly verify the force being applied by the tester is equivalent to the calibrated force of the tester. This is done by using the tester to apply force to a known metal hardness (the Test Block).  The result is then compared to the master indentations on the Test Block to determine if the Tester is applying accurate pressure.

Some of the factors to consider when choosing the right test block are

  1. Hardness
  2. Conformance with ASTM standards
  3. Size
  4. Ease of Use
  5. Record keeping
  6. Cost
Let’s take these factors one at a time

Hardness is the known hardness of the Test Block as certified.  Because the hardness of the block is known it can be used to determine the size diameter of indentation made at a given level of force.  The Test Block should be within a reasonable range of the hardness of the material to be tested but it does not nee to be exact. Why? Because the tester is being verified for the force it applies to a known hardness.  It will apply the same force regardless of the hardness of the test block. Reasonable guidance is to purchase a test block +/- 50 HBW from your parts target hardness. if you want to tighten the range; you can but the result will be the same.  The only time the result may vary would be a function of dwell time on softer metal which could influence results.

Conformance with ASTM  standards is important and in some case vital.  This means the test Block has a limited number of indentation opportunities as a function of the requirements for spacing as laid out in ASTM E10.  You may only use the designated test surface (no flipping the test block to double the number of indents. King Tester has taken the guess work out of meeting ASTM standards for you with our patented test block design which makes it simple to punch in the right places.

Test blocks come in different sizes and size only makes a difference in so far as larger sizes allow you to reduce you cost of verification by more effectively using the real estate on the Test Block. King Tester provides both 2×6 and 4×4 sizes in a wide range of hardnesses.

Ease of use is important for a couple of reasons.  The ability to set the Test Block in the right place to make the proper indentation is easier with a grid design. The grid design allows the user to follow the markings to place the test block in the proper spot for the indentation.  Following the grid also reduces the time it takes to do the verification.

Record keeping is required to be able to establish the tester force was verified daily.  The King patented Test Block design contains an index which allow for easy tracking of tests taken. For example; test on Feb 1st was taken at location B2 and February 2nd was at B3 and so on. This replaces the sharpies and guess work and lends itself to more professional record keeping which pleases the auditors.

Cost is always a consideration and best way to measure cost is ona per indentation basis.  What is the cost for daily verification? A less expensive test block is nice but if it leads to wasted indentations and fewer indentation per block then the cost may be higher.  King’s patented Test Block design holds down your costs by managing your cost per indentation.


23 Years with King Tester

Posted on 30Jul

23 Years with King Tester : In July King Tester celebrated 23 years of Bill’s contribution to manufacturing and repairing King Portable Brinell Testers.  Bill is King Tester’s production manager, shipper extraordinaire and tagline specialist – a true King Tester renaissance man.   

Over the course of the last 23 years, Bill has seen just about everything and anything that can be done to a King Portable Brinell Tester and its face.  Bill is as enthusiastic about King Portable Brinell Testers today as he was when he started. “Andrew King saw a need 80 years ago for a portable Brinell tester and if someone found a better way to bring the Brinell testing to you, they would have done it by now,” said Bill.  

King Tester meticulously keeps track of every interaction it has with every tester – whether it be through physical forms like when Bill started or electronically in today’s digital world.  Bill has seen over 6,000 King Portable Brinell Testers leave King Tester’s doors in his 23 years.

When properly cared for and maintained, the King Portable Brinell Tester lasts for decades and is the ultimate workhorse for Brinell testing in many industries including oil and gas, foundries, defense, aerospace, automotive, heat treaters, rail and many more.  

“The fact that King products are such a small but important part of our manufacturing world and help to build so much infrastructure is really incredible,”  Bill said, “Our customers can’t do what they need to do and build what they need to build without these King products. So it is pretty cool to be a crucial cog in the wheel.”            

With King Tester’s ISO-17025 certification, it carries on a long tradition of over 80 years of commitment to the highest quality testers on the market.  Bill is very passionate about Daily Verification, “It is the only way to get a real depiction of its accuracy and reliability. It is essentially like backing up your computer.”  Daily Verification and yearly Indirect Verification increase the longevity of your King Portable Brinell Tester’s accuracy, reliability and durability.

King Tester continues to be the crown jewel for metal hardness testing.   King Tester recently introduced its new KingScope100™, an ASTM Type A reader and innovation in Brinell indent reading.  King Tester offers a wide range of metal hardness testing equipment and related products to customers wo

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