Difference between Carbon Steel and Stainless Steel

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Carbon Steel

Carbon steel is based on certain criteria, which, if followed, would come under the carbon steel category. The few points or the standards to be kept in mind before classifying into the same are-

  • There is no specification of the minimum content required for certain things like- nickel, titanium, cobalt, chromium, molybdenum, etc. These do not require to be added to obtain the desired and preferred alloying effect.
  • The minimum specified copper does not exceed the percentage of 0.04.
  • The maximum quantity or the content in these specified elements should not exceed the certain number of percentages noted by the reserved authority.

Also, it is said that the carbon steel, which is truly that way, must have less to nil alloying elements. This would lead to the making of carbon steel only by two elements: carbon and iron.

Carbon steel can be of two broad categories, namely- traditional carbon steel, and the other one is the low alloy steel. These are often more resistant, strong, rigid, and stiff, and better in corrosion resistance than traditional carbon steel. The low alloy steel is sometimes called carbon steel only. 

The types of carbon steel are-

  • Low carbon steel: These are the most extensive and highly used steel compared to other carbon steel types. It has very few carbon components, less than 0.25 percent. These are comparably weaker and less reliable types of carbon steel.
  • Medium carbon steel: It belongs to the category in which the carbon content in the steel ranges from 0.25 to around 0.7 percent. It is stronger but less ductile than the first type of carbon steel, low carbon steel. It also has some manganese content.
  • High carbon steel: This type is the rigid and harder category in the types of carbon steel. It has the lowest ductile property. It has carbon content in the range of 0.7 to 1.25 percent.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is made around a few basic things, which is the one key property of amazing corrosion resistance, which would further lead to the great heights of chromium and lesser carbon content. The mechanical properties of this steel would vary accordingly, apart from the corrosion resistance. The stainless steel suppliers also provide the best steel in the name of austenitic stainless steel, along with the corrosion resistance property; it is easily welded and machined for use. These steels are used for a variety of daily and regular things items. Also, these are made with highly waterproof technology, making their use even more vast and reliable. However, they are not made for heat treatment.

The types of stainless steel in the market are as follows-

  • Austenitic: This is the most frequently utilized steel in the markets. It contains low-yielding strength but has higher heat and corrosive-related properties. This type is used everywhere, whether in homes, offices, or warehouses. It is used everywhere.
  • Ferritic: It does not compose nickel, giving better heat, corrosion, and cracking resistance to the steel. These are commonly used in indoor architecture.
  • Martensitic: This type shows quite a few magnetic properties, and its corrosion resistance ability is less due to the low content of chromium present in it. These types of metals are quite rigid and hard and can be used in making blades and knives.
  • Duplex: The duplex type is a combination of ferritic and austenitic, making it have the ability of both strong and flexibleness, along with the double yielding strength of austenitic steel. It is used in the making of paper, shipbuilding, and also in the petrochemical industries.
  • Precipitation: Along with the corrosive properties of the austenitic steel, it can be made hardened in good quality to provide higher strengths so that its ability to be strong is increased even more at the time when other elements are added.

In the endpoint, there is just one significant difference between the two; one consists of carbon, and the other does not possess carbon.

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