Usage of steel as a building material is popular as a cost
effective, quality material as compared to the
alternatives. The three most common stainless steel
grades available in sheet metal are 304, 316, and 410.
Grade 304 is the most common of the three grades. It offers
good corrosion resistance while maintaining formability and
weldability. Available finishes are #2B, #3, and #4. Grade
303 is not available in sheet form.
Grade 316 possesses more corrosion resistance and strength
at elevated temperatures than 304. It is commonly used for
pumps, valves, chemical equipment, and marine applications.
Available finishes are #2B, #3, and #4.
Grade 410 is a heat treatable stainless steel, but it has a
lower corrosion resistance than the other grades. It is
commonly used in cutlery. The only available finish is
Aluminium is also a popular metal used in sheet metal due to
its flexibility, wide range of options, cost effectiveness,
and other properties. The four most common aluminium
grades available as sheet metal are 1100-H14, 3003-H14,
5052-H32, and 6061-T6.
Grade 1100-H14 is commercially pure aluminium, highly
chemical and weather resistant. It is ductile enough for
deep drawing and weldable, but has low strength. It is
commonly used in chemical processing equipment, light
reflectors, and jewelry.
Grade 3003-H14 is stronger than 1100, while maintaining the
same formability and low cost. It is corrosion resistant and
weldable. It is often used in stampings, spun and drawn
parts, mail boxes, cabinets, tanks, and fan blades.
Grade 5052-H32 is much stronger than 3003 while still
maintaining good formability. It maintains high corrosion
resistance and weldability. Common applications include
electronic chassis, tanks, and pressure vessels.
Grade 6061-T6 is a common heat-treated structural aluminium
alloy. It is weldable, corrosion resistant, and stronger
than 5052, but not as formable. It loses some of its
strength when welded. It is used in modern aircraft