The metal strength of the material you use for part production is a very huge determinant in the success and integrity of the product. Hence, the importance of a metal strength chart.
For instance, an aerospace machining project will require a metal with higher strength than the metal needed for making spanners or other tools. Using a metal with the wrong strength can be catastrophic; it may lead to a total collapse of the project or malfunction of the aircraft. Thus, the need to choose rightly.
But how can you choose the right metal strength for your project? You’ll find out in this article.
Common Properties of Metal Materials
There are different metrics by which machinists judge the strength of metal materials. These metrics are also known as metal strengths. Strengths can be defined as the ability of a material to withstand stress without deforming. Metals have different strengths, which explains why not all metals are suitable for all purposes. There are different types of metal strength, and they include:
This is the maximum amount of pulling or stretching that a metal can withstand without being permanently damaged. It is the measure of how much tension a metal can withstand. If an external force is applied to metal and its yield point is passed, some of the resulting deformations that follow are permanent and cannot be reversed. That is the tensile strength of the metal.
Tensile strength is further divided into three parts, namely:
Yield Strength: this is the strength a metal can withstand without permanent deformation. It can also be said to be the maximum strength a component can withstand before plastic deformation. Engineers and manufacturers calculate yield strength to know the maximum load an object can accommodate.
Breakable strength: this is the stress coordinate on the stress-strain curve at the point of failure.
Ultimate strength: the maximum tensile, compressive, or shearing stress that a specific unit area of metal can withstand without breakage or deformation. In other words, it is the maximum amount of stress a metal can endure.
This is a measure of how much impact or suddenly applied to force a metal can withstand before its failure. Impact strength is used in measuring the amount of energy the metal can absorb before it fractures, tears or damage. Therefore, if you need metal for a project and you need to know the amount of energy it can absorb, the impact strength test is what you should do.
A common misconception is that high impact strength is equivalent to a high degree of material hardness. Therefore, materials with high impact strength are hard materials. Unfortunately, this is not always true. Thus, a high impact strength does not always mean a high degree of hardness.
Some of the factors that affect the impact strength of materials include temperature (increase in temperature increases impact strength), material thickness (increase in thickness reduces impact strength), and notch radius (reducing the notch radius lowers the impact strength).
Like the name sounds, compressive strength refers to the maximum amount of pressure or compression a metal can withstand without damage. To test the compressive strength of a metal, you’ll need a universal testing machine. This machine will gradually apply increased load on the metal until it begins to deform. The point at which deformation starts to occur is the compressive strength of the metal.
Read our in-depth article about different types of Aluminum grades in rapid prototyping here.
Metal Strength Chart
There are some important parameters you should know when selecting the right metal for your project. These parameters include yield strength of steel, the tensile strength of steel, density, hardness, etc. Below is a simple metal strength chart you can use to compare metals:
|Types of Metals
|Tensile Strength (PSI)
|Yield strength (PSI)
|Hardness Rockwell (B-Scale)
|Stainless steel 304
|20 to 25
|Steel Grade 50
Why is Strength an Important Factor?
Machining is not just about getting any available metal; it is about using the right metal. To know if a material is suitable for a particular purpose, one essential factor you should consider is its strength. Knowing the metal strength will help you choose rightly. One of the most effective ways to compare metal strength is by using a metal strength chart.
Strength is an essential factor because it dictates whether your machine part will effectively serve the purpose it is meant for or not. If a metal with low strength is used instead of high-strength metal, the structure may deform easily. For instance, parts needed for a heavy-duty machine require metals with high strength. In this case, steel or titanium is often the best choice for the project. Generally, Steel, Titanium, Tungsten, and Inconel are regarded as the strongest metals. Therefore, they can be used where metals with high strength are required.
For example, using a low-strength metal for a part meant for use in a weight-lifting crane will only compromise the integrity of the part. This will render it useless for its intended use and will cause a waste of time, effort, and resources on the part of the company.
Also, the strength of metals shows how much impact they can take before deforming or losing shape. This determines how long the parts made from these metals can last. This is very important, especially in parts that might be subjected to hammering and collisions.
Therefore, strength is an essential factor that you should consider if you need a suitable metal for your project.
Before you choose any metal for your project execution, it is essential that you first answer two questions. The first question is what purpose is the metal meant to serve, and the second is how much load is the metal expected to carry. You can answer the second question by doing a simple engineering calculation. After calculating, the result will determine which of the metals has the kind of strength you need.
You don’t need to purchase all the available metals in the market to test one after the other before finding the one with a suitable strength. You can refer to the metal strength chart. There, you’ll see the different metals with their respective strengths, including the tensile strength of the steel chart.
RapidDirect Machining Services
Are you still confused about which material is best for you? Relax because RapidDirect is here for you. We understand that comparing which material to use can be tricky; therefore, we are here to help you out. We give professional suggestions on a case-to-case basis, and our service is top-notch.
Once we take charge of your project, we help you choose the best materials to perfectly suit your parts production.
We are a reliable firm offering high-quality, on-demand rapid services. With us, you don’t have to worry about time-wasting. We know you value time, and we do too. Therefore, once you reach out to us to seek our service, we’ll provide you with an accurate quote as quickly as possible.
RapidDirect understands that you want excellent service and you don’t want to spend much to get it; therefore, we offer precisely that. With us, you will get the exceptional service you crave at a highly competitive price. Our service is affordable, and we don’t compromise quality at any stage.
You don’t have to be at our firm to get your job done. All you need to do is contact us by email or upload your CAD file and get a quotation.
Q: What does strength mean in metals?
A: Strength in metals means how well a metal can resist external pressure or force without losing its original shape.
Q: What is the difference between strength and toughness in metals?
Strength is a metal’s resistance to non-recoverable deformation, otherwise called plastic deformation. Toughness, on the other hand, is how well a metal can resist fracture. Toughness is, therefore, measured as the energy needed to cause fracture on a metal. In other words, the former is an irreversible deformation while the latter is a reversible deformation.
Q: What are the strongest metals?
A: Generally, Steel, Titanium, Tungsten, and Inconel are regarded as the strongest metals.