A large assortment of industrial materials is available in the machining industry, including metals and alloys, plastics, and polymer blends. However, steel and aluminum alloys are the most commonly used machining materials in various industries where the production of high-performance and complex parts is required.
Bergsen Metals has been a highly regarded supplier of top-quality steel products such as carbon steel, stainless steel, and alloys since 1974. With our extensive network of partners and collaborators, we can quickly respond to our customer’s steel requirements and provide expert service at competitive prices.
Our machining capabilities offer a comprehensive list of size ranges to custom cut and fabricate steel and other metals.
Most Commonly Used Steel For Machining
Although over a thousand different steel compositions exist, the most common steel for machining can be categorized into the following steel types:
Carbon steel accounts for nearly 90% of total steel production. This steel type contains up to 2.5% carbon and can be categorized as a low, medium, or high-carbon steel, depending on the carbon composition. The higher the percentage of carbon, the greater the hardness and strength of the steel. Heat treatment is usually recommended to reduce corrosion or weathering after machining carbon steel. Here are a few example grades of this steel type:
- Low: 1008, 1010, 1012, 1015, 1018
- Medium: 1030, 1040
- High: 1080
Bergsen carries an array of high-performance carbon steels, including the following:
- C1018 Cold Drawn Steel (low-carbon)
- 1045 TGP Cold Drawn Steel Bar (medium-carbon)
- 4140 Cold Finished Annealed Steel (medium carbon)
- 1144 Steel (Stressproof®) Bergsen is one of the only distributors of Stressproof® 1144 steel in the western US.
When you add other elements to carbon steel, you will form alloy steel. This steel is created for added physical characteristics that regular carbon steel can’t exhibit. Examples of alloy steel include SAE AISI 4130, 4140, and 4340. Here are some common alloys compounded to produce excellent properties:
- Corrosion resistance: copper and nickel
- Embrittlement resistance: molybdenum
- Improved appearance: chromium, molybdenum, vanadium, and tungsten
- Increased machinability: bismuth, lead, selenium, and tellurium
- Increased strength: copper, nickel, manganese, and silicon
- Increased toughness: calcium, cerium, and zirconium
Stainless steel is a chromium-iron alloy known for its strength and resistance to corrosion. This steel contains at least 10.5% chromium, which is the primary compounded element of stainless steel. Stainless steel is a more expensive material and can be challenging to machine.
Bergsen’s stainless steel product line includes a variety of alloys, including the following grades and sizes:
- 15-5 PH
- 17-4/630 H1150
- 17-4PH (630)
This group of steel is widely used to make tools for cutting and shaping other materials. There are six tool steel categories: air-hardened, water-hardened, shock-resistant, high speed, hot work, and special purchase. Each of them has properties that allow them to cut, press, coin, or extrude other metals or materials.
Benefits Of Steel Products For Machining
The following are some of the benefits of using steel products for machining:
- Cost Efficiency. Steel is less expensive than other machining materials. Its durability also reduces repair or replacement costs.
- Design Flexibility. Steel has limitless design flexibility and can support a wide range of external finishes.
- Durability. Steel has superior structural strength and integrity. Steel is not susceptible to termites, corrosion, and combustion, unlike other materials for machining.
- Recyclability. Steel is 100% recyclable and can easily be reused without losing its inherent properties.
- Low Carbon Emission. Since steel is a recyclable material, the CO2 produced from steelmaking can be lessened during recycling, thus, contributing less to carbon emissions.
Industries And Applications Of Steel
Aside from the machining industry, steel is also widely used in the following sectors:
- Automotive. According to World SteEl Organization (WSA), a car requires nearly 2,000 lbs., or 900 kg., of steel. Advanced High-Strength Steel, or AHSS makes up about 60% of the body structures of modern automobiles.
- Buildings & Infrastructure. Steel can be tailored to the specific requirements of different infrastructural development, like bridges, high-rise buildings, arenas, and more.
- Consumer Products. The consumer products sector also benefits from steel. A good example of this is food and beverage packaging. Food packed in steel cans doesn’t require refrigeration. Additionally, steel is also used in making razors, furniture, kitchenware, and cookware.
- Domestic Appliances. Steel accounts for approximately 75% of the average household appliance including washers and dryers, microwave ovens, dishwashers, and refrigerators.
- Electrical Equipment. Steel application in electrical equipment includes magnetic steel core transformers, generators, electric motors, pylons, and steel-reinforced cables.
- Mechanical Equipment. Steel is used in various mechanical equipment and machinery, including bulldozers, tractors, cranes, rolling mills, and hand tools like hammers and shovels, and a lot more.
- Other Transportation. Steel is used in various parts and components of ships, trains, railroad cars, and airplanes. These include ship hulls, train wheels, and airplane landing gear.
Choose Bergsen Metals For Quality Steel Products
Bergsen Metals serves the machining industry with a large inventory of carbon steel, stainless steel, and aluminum. We assist customers in obtaining standard and customized raw materials to meet their specifications.
Our steel and aluminum products come in common shapes and sizes, including cold-drawn square bars, cold-finished flats, turned and polished cold-drawn round bars, and cold-drawn hexagon bars. We also offer aircraft alloys, pressed/forged round bars. Custom extrusions and finishing treatments are also available.