304 Stainless Steel

304 stainless steel investment cast part

Barron Industries offers the manufacturing of exceptional 304 stainless steel components, welding, machining, and non-destructive testing capabilities. Although there are over 100 grades of stainless steel available on the market, 304 is considered to be one of the most versatile types of steel, and offers plenty of benefits in the manufacturing of high-strength components for many safety-critical industries and harsh environments.

Read our page to learn more about its benefits and how we can help you.

304 Stainless Steel Properties

Manufacturers looking for superior quality will tend to choose 304 stainless steel because of its properties. Stainless steels are essentially low carbon alloy steels containing a minimum of 11.5% chromium which provides resistance to corrosion and scaling at elevated temperatures. They are selected for their high strength, abrasion and erosion resistance, magnetic properties, their attractive appearance, and ease of cleaning.

The 300 series class of stainless steel (including 304) are the austenitic chromium-nickel types which provide the best corrosion resistance of all the stainless steels. With nickel as the second major alloying element, the 300 series types retain an austenitic structure during cooling from elevated temperatures. The austenitic types also have high ductility, low yield strength and tensile strengths. They are easily welded.

304 Stainless Steel Composition

304 type steel is sometimes referred to as 18/8 steel. This is because the composition of 304 stainless steel is 18% chromium and 8% nickel. Additionally, type 304 may contain a small amount of carbon. That being said, the amount of carbon in this type is still very low, at a maximum of 0.08 percent.

Advantages of 304 Stainless Steel

Stainless steel, specifically type 304, is very popular in a wide range of situations because it delivers superior strength. This makes it a great option for manufacturing, industrial, and aerospace applications.

Another advantage of 304 stainless steel is that it is very resistant to corrosion, even without costly secondary plating and coating treatments. This makes it a great option for low-maintenance applications. Its corrosion resistance is also one of the reasons why it’s commonly used in culinary, medical, and other highly corrosive environments. As previously mentioned, type 304 steel is also highly formable and can be easily welded, which makes it a great choice for manufacturing and design engineers.

Lastly, when products are made with 304 stainless steel, they are stronger, more durable, and tend to have exceptional antimicrobial properties.

Stainless Steel Applications

There are many applications for 304 stainless steel in the aerospace, medical, automotive, culinary, industrial, and consumer goods industries. Its low susceptibility to corrosion and natural antimicrobial properties make it useful for food processing equipment, general kitchen equipment, chemical containers, water filtration screens, and sanitary troughs.

304 or 304L Stainless Steel?

If you’re wondering what the L means at the end of 304L, it’s low carbon. Earlier we mentioned that type 304 steel can contain up to 0.08% carbon, which is considered a high-carbon stainless steel, despite the low percentage.

By comparison, type 304L is a low-carbon stainless steel that contains a maximum of 0.03% carbon. The lower carbon content reduces welding carbide precipitation, allowing the material to be used as welded with no annealing, even in highly corrosive environments.

Contact Barron Industries Today

Have questions? Barron Industries is ready to help. Founded in 1923, we’re a full-service manufacturer serving clients globally. We specialize in helping clients in the aerospace, defense, automotive, oil and gas, nuclear, medical, and commercial industries. To ensure quality, we’re also AS 9100- and ISO 9001-certified and accredited by Nadcap for non-destructive testing and welding.

If you would like to learn more about 304 stainless steel capabilities, please fill out our online form.