Stainless Steel Pipe

Sturdy Stainless Steel Pipe by Aero-Flex

In about 5 billion years our Sun will run out of its hydrogen fuel that has been converted to helium via the fusion process. The Sun will then use the helium as fuel converting it into carbon. After the helium runs “dry” the Sun will become a large globe of lifeless carbon called a white dwarf star.

In galactic terms, the Sun is quite a wimp compared to larger stars that occupy the universe. Massive stars have more gravity to continue the fusion process until the carbon gets converted to iron, a very stable element. A few of those massive stars will explode into supernovas where the extreme conditions can create heavier elements like silver and gold. Some of that stellar debris became the Earth with scarce amounts of silver and gold deposited around the globe and vast amounts of iron forming the core of the planet with iron ore deposits in the Earth’s crust.

Stainless Steel 101

It was not until 1856 when an English inventor Sir Henry Bessemer invented a process to produce good quality steel from the abundant iron ore sources. And in 1913, stainless steel (SS) was invented by English metallurgist Harry Brearley. Since then, better grades of stainless steel have been developed like 304SS and 316SS and these are the raw materials used by Aero-Flex Products in Jupiter, Florida to make their bent tubes and piping assemblies for a global market.

Aero-Flex was started in 2008 by the son/father team of Josh and Michael Deakter. Their expertise is second to none in the design and fabrication of Flexible Metal Hosing, Piping Systems and Welded Tube assemblies for many industries in the USA and abroad.

Stainless steel is much more than refined iron. Metallurgists have tinkered with SS to create approximately 50 grades of SS with varying amounts of carbon, chromium, and nickel for improved strength, corrosion resistance, and malleability. Two of the most common are 304SS and 316SS.

304 is the most common SS alloy containing approximately 20% chromium and 10% nickel and 0.08% Carbon. It is corrosion resistant and used in laundry and kitchen products. 304L is a low carbon grade used in heavy gauge welding and 304H is a high carbon grade used to provide strength in high-temperature applications

316 is another common SS alloy containing about 12% nickel and 17% chromium plus 2% molybdenum that provides a greater corrosion resistance than 304 SS. Propeller shafts for boats that will be exposed to salt water is a typical application for 316 SS.

For a stainless steel pipe, another concern is its magnetic properties. Iron-containing (ferrous) materials are naturally magnetic but higher amounts of chromium and nickel will alter the crystal structure of the alloy to make it non-magnetic. The is important in cryogenic (low temperature) applications and instrumentation where a magnetic field can interfere with an instrument’s readings.

Call Aero-Flex

Every grade of SS will have different welding properties and Aero-Flex can handle all grades of SS, carbon steel, nickel and titanium for routine and complex welds. With over 75 years of combined experience, the engineers at Aero-Flex can advise on the right metal to use for your project and make expert welds that will withstand the most rigorous tensile and bend tests. If you need a stainless steel pipe assembly, contact Aero-Flex online for a free quote or call them at 561-745-2534 to talk to our team of experts.

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