Uses of Different Grades of Aluminium and Stainless Steel Sheet Metal.
Different grades of aluminium and stainless steel sheet metal are made in a process where the metals are made into thin, flat pieces. This forms an important basis in metal working because thin sheets are easy to cut or bent into a desired shape.
Different thickness of the sheets is needed to fulfil a range of needs; from extremely thin sheets known as foil or leaf, from aluminium foil as thin as 0.03 mm can be produced to gold leaf (made of gold) which can be only a few atoms thick. On the other end of the spectrum is Plate sheet metal which is thick and are in excess of 0.25 inches, or 6 mm.
Metal sheets are constructed from a wide range of metals including brass, copper, nickel, tin, aluminium, steel and titanium. Expensive and aesthetically pleasing metal sheets are used for decorative purposed, like gold, silver and platinum.
Sheet metal is extremely versatile with a wide range of properties – different types of metal are used based on their weight, density, malleability as well as its tensile, fatigue, yield, compressive and impact strength. The applications for sheet metals range from automotive, aircraft, construction and armour plating. Magnetically permeable metals are used in the construction of transformers and electric machines.
Below is a list of metal grades categorized by type of metal:
The second most used metal today, aluminium is important for its flexibility, wide range of options, cost effectiveness, and abundance in nature.
|1100||Pure aluminium is highly chemical and weather resistant. While ductile, it is soft and low strength.|
|3003||A stronger variation of 1100 that is still affordable and easy to manipulate. Chemical and weather resistant.|
|5052||Stronger than 3003 yet still manageable. Highly resistant to corrosion and easy to manipulate.|
|6061||Heat-treated and stronger than 5052, this grade of aluminium retains good corrosion resistance, can be welded, but is harder to work with. Welding causes it to lose some of its strength.|
Strong, cheap and versatile, stainless steel is a steel alloy that is at least 10.5% chromium and is resistant to rusting, corrosion or staining. Stainless steel is highly workable and does not need protective layering.
|304||Non-magnetic and non-hardened. Most common. Resists corrosion. Easy to manipulate. Used in cookware, chemical containers, automotive/aircraft, construction and nuts and bolts.|
|316||Molybdenum-bearing austenitic stainless steel. Higher resistance to tensile, creep and stress rupture at elevated temperatures. Used in food preparation equipment, chemical processing, pollution-control equipment, pharmaceutical and textile industries.|
|410||Has higher carbon content and is heat-treatable. Most common martensitic stainless steel. Has the lowest chromium content, thus lower resistances to corrosion but with higher strength and hardness. Used in kitchen utensils, cutlery, screws, nuts and bolts, gas turbine and steam blades, pump and valve parts, nozzles and hardened steel balls.|