As a result of rolling, forging, machining, welding, and other hot and cold working, steel will build up residual stresses as the metal is stretched and compressed. To relieve these stresses, the steel is heated to just below the critical range, approximately 1,200° F (649° C) for one steel formulation, and soaked thoroughly at this temperature. The metal becomes soft enough to allow creep, and internal residual stresses are released. This prepares the steel for further working without stress cracking, or to be put into service without failure in the future. In general, stress relieving improves the parts machinability and promotes tighter mechanical tolerances, but unlike annealing or normalizing, it does not change the steel properties. When designing your conveyorized or batch stress relief oven, Wisconsin Oven strives for faster heating rates and increased production capacity with tighter temperature tolerances.