Introduction

Stainless steel is the low carbon steel that offers many properties that are sought after for industrial applications. Stainless steel typically contains a minimum of 10% chromium by weight.

The material properties associated with stainless steel have made it a popular metal within a broad range of industries, including construction, automotive, aerospace and more. Within these industries, Stainless steel is versatile and is an effective choice for many applications.

Subtypes

stainless steel raw material

303 Stainless Steel

303 stainless steel has good machinability and does not cause cutting tools to stick. The metal is commonly used for manufacturing fittings and fasteners and demonstrates high corrosion resistance up to a certain temperature.

Tensile StrengthElongationHardnessMaximum TempManufacturing Process
35,000 psi42.5%95 HRB2550° FCNC Mill, CNC Lathe
stainless steel raw material

304 Stainless Steel

304 stainless steel is one of the most broadly used austenitic stainless steel materials and has a wide range of applications, from fabricating cookware to chemical-processing equipment. 304 stainless steel is especially recognized for its high corrosion resistance up to 1500° F.

Tensile StrengthElongationHardnessMaximum TempManufacturing Process
30,000 psi50%80 HRB1500° FCNC Mill, CNC Lathe
stainless steel raw material

316 Stainless Steel

316 stainless steel demonstrates excellent corrosion resistant properties thanks to the addition of molybdenum and nickel. This high level of corrosion resistance makes 316 stainless steel ideal for use in harsh environments, including marine or chemical-processing applications

Tensile StrengthElongationHardnessMaximum TempManufacturing Process
30,000 psi39%95 HRB1500° FCNC Mill, CNC Lathe

Surface Finish

Bead blasting

Bead blasting results in parts with a smooth surface with a matte texture. Used mainly for visual applications and can be followed by other surface treatments.

Bead blasting Image
Brushing

Brushing is a surface treatment process in which abrasive belts are used to draw traces on the surface of a material, usually for aesthetic purposes. Most commonly applied to aluminum.

Brushing Image
Powder Coating

Powder coating forms a durable, wear resistant and corrosion resistant layer on the surface of parts. Powder coating can be used to apply colors to parts and is compatible with any metal.

Powder Coating Image
Painting

Painting the surface of a part improves its aesthetic appearance and can provide brand recognition to consumers. In addition, painting can have a protective effect on parts.

Painting Image
Polishing

Polishing is the process of creating a smooth and shiny surface, either through physical rubbing of the part or by chemical interference. The process produces a surface with significant specular reflection, but in some materials is able to reduce diffuse reflection.

Polishing Image

Manufacturability

Tolerance

Standard: (+/-) 125 µm -Achievable: (+/-) 100 µm , (+/-) 50 µm

Wall Thickness

The minimum wall thickness should be at least 1 mm for machined parts. - 2 mm is suggested for better strength. - 2.5 mm is suggested for rigid walls

Pocket depth

Pocket depth should be up to 3 times the diameter of the end mill

Engraving

Engraving is preferable to embossing - For the clear, legible text consider fonts such as Arial or Gothic - Design letter strands with a width of at least 2 mm.

Internal Radii

The minimum internal radii possible is 1 mm - In general, internal radii dimensions depend on the depth of pocket being milled

Holes

Use standard drill bit sizes - Minimum of 1 mm in diameter

Threads

Use standard metric inserts - Smallest threaded insert possible is M2

Design Recommendations

All stainless steels alloys are high in strength though they vary in terms of hardness, machinability and cost.

304 stainless steel has a medium hardness, making it easier to cut, and generally has the lowest cost.

303 stainless steel has good machinability and high hardness and often comes at a higher price point.

senior technical manager - rick

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