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Stainless Steel Flat Rolled Coil
Stainless Steel Grade Comparison
Austenitic stainless steels contain chromium and nickel (300 Series types) as well as chromium, nickel and manganese (200 Series types). Most can be hardened by cold-working but not by heat treatment. All are nonmagnetic in the annealed condition as well, though some may become slightly magnetic by cold-working. They also have excellent corrosion resistance and unusually good formability. They increase in strength as a result of cold work. With a nominal composition of 18% chromium and 8% nickel, Type 304 (sometimes referred to as 18-8 stainless) is the most widely used alloy in this group.
Ferritic stainless steels are straight-chromium 400 Series types that cannot be hardened by heat treatment and only moderately hardened by cold-working. They are magnetic with good ductility and resistant to corrosion and oxidation. Type 430 is the general-purpose stainless steel of this group.
Martensitic stainless steels are straight-chromium 400 Series types that can be hardened by heat treatment. They are magnetic and, in mild environments, resistant to corrosion. They have fairly good ductility, and some can be heat-treated to tensile strengths exceeding 200,000 psi (1379 MPa). Type 410 is the general-purpose alloy of this group.
For a comparison of chemical and mechanical properties of common austenitic and ferritic grades of stainless steel according to ASTM A240, see our Stainless Steel Grade Comparison Chart.