Stainless steel bars (also known as stainless steel bars, stainless steel rounds or stainless steel round bars shaped as solid cylinders, as opposed to stainless steel square bars, stainless steel hex bars) are standard construction and finishing materials and are commonly used for a broad variety of structural and esthetic uses in all industries and applications.
Stainless steel bars have a number of highly appreciated properties, but by far the most significant of these is the one that gives the metal the ‘stainless’ name: corrosion resistance. It is accomplished through the alloy process-stainless steel is a metal alloy, the key ingredients of which are iron and chromium, and to qualify as stainless steel, the product must contain not less than 10.5 percent of chromium (which is actually significantly higher in practice).
Other materials commonly present at varying percentages in stainless steel include silicon, carbon, and manganese. Many alloy additions for different applications/characteristics of the finished product are often added during manufacturing; these may usually involve titanium, molybdenum, nickel, copper, or nitrogen. The overall quantity of alloy components in a finished piece of stainless steel can often be as high as 30 percent.
We’ll discuss more the various forms of stainless steel alloys and their respective characteristics in this article, but if you’re looking to buy stainless steel online-be it bars, rods or stainless steel pipes, sheets or angles-you should also be aware that the metal is processed and graded in many specific ways.
This is done in order to meet various levels of corrosion resistance for usage in very specific types of applications and environments, and this is why you can see so many distinct ‘grades’ of stainless steel products on the catalog pages of several of the suppliers of stainless steel bars.
Types of Stainless Steel Rods & Bars
- Round bar/rod- Sized by diameter.
- Flat/rectangular bar- Sized by thickness and width.
- Square Bar- Sized by either thickness or width.
- Hexagonal bar- Sized by thickness across the flat faces, rather than corner-to-corner.
- T-Bar (or tee bar) – Commonly used in industry, machinery, commerce and equipment manufacture.
- Channel (sometimes called u-channel) – Often used in equipment frames and braces, as well as enclosures and housings.
There are many various types of stainless steel bars and rods are available in the market because they are used for the product. Fortunately, while there is likely to be a steel bar product designed for just about any type or form of design that you may like to imagine, there are still a variety of fairly common or standardized sizes that tend to be utilized in a much wider range of different structures and applications.
As we noted above, the one property of stainless steel that’s valued above all others is that it’s impressively resistant to many types of corrosion, depending on the specifications of how a given stainless steel grade was produced.
Nevertheless, the alloy also has a range of other notable properties that you should also keep in mind when looking for stainless steel rods, bars, sheets, and other products for specific applications.