Stainless Steel Supplies
What is stainless steel and what is it used for?
Stainless steel is the name given to a range of alloys that are corrosion resistant, tough, and highly versatile; it is often also referred to by its grade numbers of 316, 303, 430 or 304.
There are over 200 different grades of stainless-steel alloys available but less than 50 of these grades are still in regular commercial production.
Stainless Steel has a chromium content of around 18% which offers good corrosion and heat resistant qualities making it particularly suitable for food preparation areas, architectural applications and features, general engineering, and petrochemical and pharmaceutical applications.
A guide to Stainless Steel grades.
Grade 303 has excellent machinability properties and is specifically designed to be free machining. It is easy to drill, tap and cut, however, it is not suitable for welding or bending. 303 grade is commonly used to make aircraft fixings, switchgear component parts, gears, and bushings.
Grade 304 is the most widely used grade for general fabrications and has good corrosion resistance, excellent weldability, with good machining and forming properties. This grade is used to make surgical equipment, sinks, still tubes, nuts and bolts, and shipping drums.
Grade 316 has excellent corrosion resistance to most chemicals so is often specified for marine, coastal, and more aggressive environmental applications. It is easy to weld but is often considered to be harder to machine than other stainless-steel grades. This grade can be used for food preparation equipment, valves, pumps, and furnace parts.
Grade 430 has good corrosion resistance, formability, and machinability properties. This grade is often used for the manufacture of scientific equipment, washing machine drums, automotive trim, and dishwasher interiors.
Order your stainless steel from metals4U.
Our product range is available in a choice of finishes- mill finish, bright, or satin polished and in a variety of profiles.