4 Industrial Uses of Stainless Steel

Steel is used as a raw material in a wide range of industrial processes. From zippers to skyscrapers, stainless steel is an indispensable part of our daily life. There are more than 150 varieties of stainless steel, out of which 15 are used in industrial applications. 316 stainless steel tube suppliers provide stainless steel tubes that are commonly used in the metal tubing industry. Stainless steel is used in different forms such as plates, bars, sheets and tubings. Continue reading “4 Industrial Uses of Stainless Steel”

3 Things To Consider When Choosing A Stainless Steel Tube of Right Grade

Stainless Steel Tube

Are you looking for a high-quality stainless steel tube for use in your factory? To ensure that you buy a good one, you need to have a good knowledge of the different grades of stainless steel. If the application requires good formability, don’t opt for a martensitic group of stainless steel. Instead, go for an austenitic grade of stainless steel such as 304 or a ferritic grade like 430. Continue reading “3 Things To Consider When Choosing A Stainless Steel Tube of Right Grade”

Alloy Steel

7 Essential Facts You Should Know About Alloy Steel

Alloy Steel

Alloy steel is a type of steel which contains different elements like nickel, silicon, copper and manganese. Elements like nickel, copper, cobalt and copper help to increase the temperature range between which austenite exists. Minor metals such as titanium and zirconium create carbides that increase the strength and hardness of steel. Silicon, molybdenum and aluminum extracts can decrease the effect of solubility of carbon. Cobalt, nickel and silicon can reduce the carbide stability of steel. This causes breakdown and creation of new graphite. Continue reading “7 Essential Facts You Should Know About Alloy Steel”

5 Common Applications for Stainless Steel Tubes

A variety of industries depend on stainless steel tube for different applications. Its versatility makes it the best choice for different applications. With the application of nickel, molybdenum, and chromium in various amounts, manufacturers come up with different grades to suit different purposes.

The use of stainless steel tube in the different industries is mainly supported by the fact that it is low maintenance and doesn’t affect the metals and other materials it comes in contact with. Let us take a look at the most common applications for these pipes.

High-Pressure Applications

In factories where liquids are pumped through at high pressure, stainless steel is the best material to use. The grade may vary depending on the pressure that will be passed through the pipes. Some of these may be welded together while others are seamless and there are some grades that can handle high temperatures combined with high pressure.

Aviation Application

Different parts of an aircraft will utilize stainless steel. The engine probably uses the most steel, especially where high temperatures will be experienced. The kind of steel used usually has a composition of chromium and nickel. Aircraft engineers prefer lighter steel which is also strong. 304 is a common grade used for tubing and wiring. The jet engine utilizes 321 grade because of its high resistance to temperatures that reach 1500°F. it is also used for the exhaust ducts. Other grades commonly used are 316 and 430.

Food Processing

In industries that deal with food as well as pharmaceuticals, stainless steel tubes are used because they do not contaminate the food. Nothing in the steel will sip into the food so it will remain safe and clean. Any process that needs to maintain the purity of the substance that washes through the pipes can use stainless steel. 304 grade is a common food grade steel that is used for this purpose. However, sometimes it has to be substituted for a more corrosion-resistant grade like 316 which can even withstand acidic chemicals and heat without getting corroded.

Mining

The mining process uses a lot of pipes. In most cases, these pipes need to be corrosion resistant as well as withstand high pressure. Stainless steel pipes meet those criteria and that is why they are used. For offshore mining, alloys that contain molybdenum can provide good piping without getting affected by the salty water. Sometimes the pipes through which the oil is transported need to be heated to keep the crude oil in liquid state, this requires pipes that can withstand repeated exposure to heat.

Decorative Application

In construction, stainless steel pipes provide decorative railing because of their shiny nature. Various grades have this property and at times it depends on what one is ready to pay to have a particular grade. At the same time though, they need to consider where the pipes will be placed. Some places may expose the pipes to a higher degree of corrosion.

There are many more applications for stainless steel pipes, but these 5 are the most common. Sometimes, a special grade of steel can be made for special projects. You would need to ask the manufacturer about having that done.

Quick Guide: All You Need to Know about 304 Grade (The Most Popular Alloy)

When you talk of popular stainless-steel grades, 304 is one of the first that comes to mind for most buyers. This is not surprising though considering the quality that comes at a fairly cheaper price in comparison to other austenitic grades. Although there are other cheaper ferritic grades, 304 has more applications for many.

For some of our clients who may want to reduce spending on alloys, we would recommend the ferritic grade. Although it brings down the cost, there is the issue of rusting that will occur if the metal is not painted. This is why Arch City Steel usually recommends 304 which many clients have come to appreciate for its performance.

Even though 304 was created more than a century ago, it continues to outcompete the newer grades when it comes to popularity. You will find more engineers know about this grade than they do about some of the improved grades.

It is probably something beyond price that attracts many to it. We ensure that we make the finest alloys with the right amount of elements in them. 304 stainless steel contains 18 percent chrome, this is a very important addition to the steel because it provides its most important property which is corrosion resistance. For most applications that will not involve excess exposure to corrosive environments, this steel will do the job.

304 also contains nickel which is probably what makes it more expensive than some other alloys. The nickel in this grade is 8 percent and it is not there simply to make the alloy expensive. It acts as a stabilizing element. Nickel adds ductility as well as strength to this austenitic alloy. This is a property that makes the steel applicable in a number of industrial tasks where strength is required.

With just about the right amount of nickel, this grade is fairly affordable and yet still strong enough to be used in different ways. Its workability is great as it can be welded, cut, and adjusted to suit certain applications.

Is it Always the Best?

Because of its popularity, you might be moved to believe that it is the best grade to use. Well, if what you are looking for is to use it in food-grade applications or simple construction and chemical-pharmaceutical tasks, then it will be just fine, there would be no reason to buy something more expensive for such applications.

Some other applications may require a higher level of corrosion resistance and that is when it may not be the best choice. Reputed suppliers usually encourage buyers to speak to an expert first before they determine which stainless steel grade to get. Sometimes we recommend its close substitute 306 which also contains chrome and nickel but also has molybdenum added to it for extra corrosion resistance. You would have to pay more, but if you will be using it in a highly corrosive environment, it would be the best choice.

How to Find the Right Stainless Steel Grade for your Needs

Stainless steel products share many characteristics. However, they differ when it comes to grades. Types 321 stainless steel tube, for instance, varies from 302 with the addition of titanium stabilizer. Therefore, understanding the different grades available is critical to finding a product that matches your personal and budgetary preferences.

If you are planning to buy stainless steel, you’ve probably come across the term grades. The grade is how experts categorize the production specifications, mechanical properties, and composition of stainless steel. There are over 3,500 grades of stainless steel in the market, but these grades aren’t created the same.

Of course, choosing the right grade will boil down to your needs and preferences. For example, a 321 stainless steel tube can be a great choice if you look for a product that works well in high-temperature environments. Type 321 is a standard austenitic 18/8 chromium-nickel alloy blended with titanium. The titanium stabilizes the material and removes its susceptibility to the effects of intergranular corrosion. It is resistant to sterilizing solutions, atmospheric corrosion, and different types of inorganic and organic chemicals. You can also look into other options, including ferritic steel, which is cost-effective or duplex, which offers a little bit of ferritic and austenitic stainless steels.

With that in mind, here is how to find the right stainless steel grade for your needs.

Consider strength, toughness, and ductility

As we mentioned above, your needs will dictate the type of grade you end up with. Different stainless steel grades have different strength, toughness, and ductility. Stress means the amount of stress the tube can take before it deforms or fractures. Toughness is its ability to absorb energy before it fractures. While ductility is its ability to withstand molding without it breaking or losing strength.

Think about the form and process

You will want to bend or coil your stainless steel tubing to fit into your operations in many cases. So, if your tube will go through any form of the machining process, it is a good idea to ensure that its machining rate mitigates the risk of work hardening. Otherwise, you should go for a free machining grade.

Consider the corrosion-resistant threshold

Stainless steels are known to be corrosion resistant. However, different grades have different thresholds. Stainless steels usually have 10-30% chromium, and thus, are corrosion resistant. The addition of nickel in austenitic grades offers the highest ductility and toughness among stainless grades. Grades with nickel, molybdenum, and chromium have the highest corrosion threshold.

Look at the cost

Austenitic stainless steel tubes can be expensive than other alternatives. However, when you consider their corrosion-resistant nature, along with durability, easy maintenance, and versatility, then it offers an incredible ROI compared to other options. However, if saving is at the top of your mind, you may want to look at the cost-effective options like ferritic steel. They still offer the benefits of steel but come at a lower price.

Conclusion

All stainless steel tubes come with an intrinsic benefit of durability, corrosion resistance, and strength. What differentiates one grade from the other is the degree of this quality, which boils down to the composition and specifications.

Choosing the Right Stainless Steel Tube Vendor

One of the most challenging problems that first-time buyers face is finding the right stainless steel tube vendor in the market. With an incredible selection to pick from, one could get easily overwhelmed or intimidated by the process.

The market has no shortage of stainless steel manufacturers, suppliers and vendors. A quick search online will reveal dozens of options near you. This can be a great thing if you think about it from an “options” perspective. However, since these vendors aren’t created equally, picking any option without consideration might mean missing out on amazing deals – or quality products.

Unfortunately, many first time buyers make this mistake, and end up learning the hard way. In this article, we will discuss some of the top qualities you should be watching out for when choosing the right stainless steel tube vendor to ensure you get the best value out of your investment.

Consider industry reputation

Stainless steel tube manufacturers aren’t created equal – some are better than others. When you are looking for the right vendor, it is important to pay a close attention to the reputation. This is how well they are known in the market, and what they are known for. A good vendor will have a great reputation for selling quality products. You can check out their online reviews along with testimonials to have a clue of what other people think about the company. You can also check out their social media platforms for the same.

Consider the stainless steel grade

When checking the grade, you’ll need to pay attention to aspects like strength, toughness and ductility, form and process, preferences and the operating environment. Strength means the strength the tube can withstand before is deforms or fractures. Ductility is the tubes ability to be bent without breaking or losing strength. Basically, these aspects indicate quality of product.

Location

Location is another critical aspect. The internet has made it easy to buy solutions from different parts of the world. You could browse for and order stainless steel tube from American even when you are in Europe or China. But if you are concerned about the process of importing and duties that apply, or if you are only placing a small order, it might be a good idea to buy from a vendor near you. Better yet, you should find one who delivers to your country and is willing to work closely with your throughout the process.

Customer service

Find a company who values your business, and appreciates you as a client. You don’t want to be another number. That’s why you should only work with a vendor who answers your questions, addresses your concerns, and is happy to serve you. Good customer services means effective communication, proactive care, and flexibility to accommodate your needs.

Cost

Cost is usually the last thing you should worry about. Ideally, you want to check all the aspects mentioned above before you considering the cost. A reputable vendor with quality products might charge higher, but you are sure to get value for your money. The same cannot be said for all vendors.

Conclusion

Finding the right stainless steel tubes vendor can be easy or hard depending on what you know (or don’t know). But with these tips, you should be able to identify the right one for your needs.

8 Interesting Facts Related to Stainless Steel You Should Be Aware Of

Thinking or hearing about the word – stainless steel would ring your mind and images of different pipes, fittings, bar stocks, plates, flanges, bars, and so much would come to your mind.

Now stainless is everywhere, in the houses we live in, offices we sat in, our utilities, and much more. The world of stainless steel pipes and other items is not new. It took years and years to reach where it is now.

Now, we are putting some key facts related to stainless steel for you-

  1. Stainless Steel Can Stain

While we think of them as stainless, they can stain.

It creates a thin oxide film when exposed to oxygen, and can regain its original form.

Permanent damage will take too much time, and the oxidizing has to be too hard.

  1. Stainless Steel As Soap

There are ‘soaps’ crated using stainless steel which doesn’t work the regular soap but kills strong odors of onion, fish, and garlic from the hands.

  1. Stainless Steel Is Recyclable

As per the studies from the American Iron and Steel Institute, about 88% of the world’s total steel is recycled.

  1. Stainless Steel As Having Magnetic Properties

While most stainless steel elements are non-magnetic, one specific type i.e.

martensitic stainless steel is ferromagnetic can exhibit permanent magnetic properties.

  1. Stainless Steel In Multiple Forms

It can be drawn into a thin, or it can be turned into a wearable steel mesh, without losing the toughness and other properties.

  1. Stainless Steel Is Used in Clothing

It’s the versatility that stainless steel offers that specific stainless steel wires are used in clothing, for decoration or support.

  1. Stainless Steel Corrodes

Send an electrical pulse through a stainless steel wire, and you will notice it turning yellow and blue, a sign of oxidation.

  1. It Is Everywhere

From kitchen appliances to living room décor item to an accessible building made from stainless steel, you will find this metal everywhere.

Selecting the Right Grade of Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is among the best corrosion resistance material out there. But that is not merely it; stainless steel has a lot of benefits including excellent formability, high strength-to-weight ratio, low maintenance, ability to recycle, etc. Owing to its versatility, stainless steel has a wide range of application. Stainless steel comes in a lot of different grades, and we will help you pick out the best for the job.

  1. Formability

If the application needs stainless steel with good formability, try not to use the martensitic category of stainless steel. Instead, you should opt for the austenitic grade (304 or ferritic grade (430) of stainless steel. Moreover, Martensitic stainless steel can get brittle and lacks adequate formability.

  1. For Welding

Welding stainless steel is completely different from welding carbon steel as there are high chances of hot stress corrosion cracking, intergranular corrosion, etc. Austenitic group of stainless steel are among the most welded stainless steel. If you are welding, then it is recommended that you use 304L or 347 grade of austenitic stainless steel. While the grade 304L features lower carbon, 347 comes with niobium stabilizers, assisting in the protection of intergranular corrosion. You can also use ferritic stainless steel grade, including 439 or 439.

  1. For Machinery

If your process requires stainless steel to be a machine, you have to be more specific about the grade of stainless steel you choose. While a majority of stainless steel can be machined, some are more complex than the others. You need to optimize the machining process to boost the efficiency of your work, along with using the right tool. Sulfur can be added to improve the machinability, which you can find in grade 303 stainless steel. Additionally grade 416 stainless steel tube is another good example of it.

  1. The level of Corrosion Resistance

Stainless steel is known for its corrosion resistance properties. However, different grade of stainless steel offers a distinctive level of corrosion resistance. If you need maximum corrosion resistance, then you should opt for austenitic stainless steel as they contain the highest amount chromium. So you should opt for 304 grade of stainless steel. Ferritic stainless steel, on the other hand, is a more cost-efficient option than austenitic stainless steel as they have less concentration of nickel and chromium.

  1. Heat Treatment

If the stainless steel is going through any heat treatment, you should be aware of how different grades might be affected by it. For austenitic and ferritic stainless steel are two non-hardenable grade of stainless steel when exposed to heat. Martensitic or precipitation hardened stainless steel is ideal for heat treatment.

  1. Strength Requirement

Martensitic stainless steel grade such as 440C or precipitation hardened stainless steel grade 15-5 PH 17-4 PH are the best options when it comes to acquiring maximum strength. Considering the high nickel content, austenitic stainless steel also offers high toughness and ductility.

The right grade of stainless steel depends on the purpose you need it for. Above are some of the best choices for the grade based on unique purposes, so next time you will be able to make the right decision.

Everything You Need to Know About Nickel Alloy

Nickel is a chemical element, which is represented by Ni symbol and an atomic number of 28. It is a silver-white lustrous metal featuring a tinge of gold hue. It comes under the transition metals and is extremely hard as well as ductile.

Nickel is a versatile metal and tends to alloy with a majority of metals. Nickel alloys are alloys wherein the nickel stand as the primary element. There is a complete solubility between nickel and copper.

Additionally, there is a wide range of solubility between chromium, iron, and nickel, allowing the formation of multiple alloy combinations. The high versatility of this material accompanied by its exceptional corrosion and heat resistance makes it an ideal material to use in many industrial applications.

Types of Nickel Alloy

Nickel can be easily alloyed with a majority of metals, including chromium, copper, molybdenum, iron, etc. Moreover, when nickel is added to other metal, the properties tend to alter. Below we are mentioning some common types of alloy –

  1. Nickel-Copper Alloys

Nickel-copper alloys are extremely resistant to corrosion by seawater and saltwater; thereby making with ideal for marine applications. This type of alloy has 63% nickel and 28-34% copper concentration.

  1. Nickel-Iron Alloys

Nickel-iron alloys are ideal for application where the thermal expansion in the property is at a low rate. It has a high degree of dimensional stability, making nickel-iron alloys quite useful in building applications such as thermostat rods, measurement equipment. Some nickel-iron alloys that hold a higher concentration of nickel are used in the manufacturing of transformers, memory storage device, inductors, etc.

  1. Nickel-Chromium Alloys

Nickel chromium-alloys are reckoned for their high resistance to corrosion, greater electrical resistance, and high-temperature strength. This type of alloy is used in making heating elements like toasters.

  1. Nickel-Molybdenum Alloys

Nickel-molybdenum alloys provide high chemical resistance to acids along with reducers such as hydrogen chloride, phosphoric acid, hydrochloric acid, and sulfuric acid. The chemical formation of this type of alloy has 29-30% concentration of molybdenum and 66-74% concentration of nickel. Common applications of nickel-molybdenum alloys include gaskets, pumps and valves, heat exchangers, pressure vessels, piping, and heat exchangers.

  1. Nickel-Chromium-Iron Alloys

Nickel-chromium-iron alloys amalgamate to generate alloys that oxidation resistance, as well as high-temperature corrosion. The alloy typically is used for their high rapture and creep properties. It has composition generally stands at Nickel 30-35%, chromium- 19-23%, and Iron 39.5%.

  1. Nickel-Titanium Alloys

Nickel-titanium alloys hold shape retention or shape memory properties. When shaped in higher temperatures and deformed in lower temperatures, this type of alloy remembers its original shape and reform to it once header. The whole process is known as transition temperature. You can alter the transition temperature by controlling the alloy composition. Nickel-titanium alloy features high-elastic property that can be leveraged to be used as a shock absorber and assist in protecting the stone buildings.

  1. Nickel-Chromium Alloys

This type of alloy encompasses molybdenum and chromium in order to add more creep rupture strength. It concentration include chromium 20-24%, molybdenum 8-10%, cobalt 10-15%, and nickel 44.5%. Some of the common applications associated with this alloy include gas turbines, furnace components, catalyst grid supports, etc.

Nickel alloy is a highly versatile element, which comes with features including high heat and corrosion resistance. This characteristic makes nickel alloy an effective Al6Xn Tubing in many structures that generated a lot of heat. It is used in a wide range of application such as steam turbines, aircraft gas turbines, energy and nuclear power industries, etc.