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Steels

Steels can be divided into three:


Carbon steels (non-alloy steels)
Alloy steels
Stainless steels

Carbon Steel Grade System


Engineering handbooks point out that classification of steels come under
the authority of:
SAE Society of Automotive Engineers
AISI American Iron and Steel Institute
1XXXX
4XXXX
5XXXX
6XXXX
8XXXX
9XXXX

1
4
5
6
8
9

indicates
Carbon
steel
indicates
Molybdenum
steel
indicates
Chromium
steel
indicates
Vanadium
steel
indicates
Nickel Chromium Molybdenum steel
indicates
Silicon Manganese
steel
X1X2X3X4X5

X1

= 1st number depicts general category grouping of steels (refer above)


= e.g. 1XXXX indicates Carbon steel

X2

= 2nd number depicts presence of other elements in the steel


= e.g. 10XX indicates no major secondary elements present
= e.g. 11XX indicates

ASTM Designation System (American Society for Testing and Materials)


Focuses on the specification of materials into various types of application.
Designation system for metals consists of a letter
A Ferrous metals
Example 1:
ASTM A 582/A 582M-95b (2000), Grade 303Se Free-Machining Stainless
Steel Bars

A describes a Ferrous metal


582 sequential number without any relationship to the metals
properties. More like a title of the document
M indicates that A 582M is written in rationalized SI units (the M comes
from the word Metric), hence A 582/A 582M includes both inch-pound
and SI units
95 - indicates the year of adoption or last revision, letter b following the
year indicates the third revision of the standard in 1995

2000 number in parentheses indicates the year of last reapproval


Grade 303Se indicates the grade of the steel, with Se (selenium)
addition.
Example 2:
ASTM A106-02a Grade A, Grade B, Grade C Seamless Carbon Steel Pipe for
High Temperature Service

Typically an increase in alphabet (such as the letters A, B, C) results in


higher tensile or yield strength steels, and if it is an unalloyed carbon
steel, an increase in carbon content.
Grade A: 0.25 % C (max.), 48 ksi tensile strength (min.);
Grade B: 0.30 % C (min.), 60 ksi tensile strength (min.); and
Grade C: 0.35 % C, 70 ksi tensile strength (min.).

Example 3:
ASTM A 276-03, Type 304, 316, 410 Stainless and Heat-Resisting Steel Bars and
Shapes

Types 304, 316, 410 and others are based on the SAE designation system
for stainless steels (see SAE and former AISI description that follows).

Example 4:
ASTM A 335/A 335M-03, Grade P22; Seamless Ferritic Alloy-Steel Pipe for HighTemperature Service.
ASTM A 213/A 213M-03a, Grade T22; Seamless Ferritic and Austenitic Alloy-Steel
Boiler, Superheater, and Heat-Exchanger Tubes.
ASTM A 312/A 312M-03, Grade TP304; Seamless and Welded Austenitic Stainless
Steel Pipes.
ASTM A 336/A 336M-03a, Class F22 - Steel Forgings, Alloy, for Pressure and HighTemperature Parts.

P refer to Pipe
T refer to Tube
TP may refer to Tube or Pipe
F refer to Forging

SAE Designation System (Society of Automotive Engineers)


Carbon Steels
Focuses on the chemical composition

10XX 1
1
XX

indicates that it is Carbon steel


indicates a plain carbon steel with 0% added element
indicates Carbon content of the steel

Major Classification of steels


1XXX
2XXX
3XXX
4XXX
5XXX
6XXX
7XXX
8XXX
9XXX
Carbon Steels
10XX
11XX
12XX
15XX

Descriptions
Carbon steels
Nickel steels
Nickel-Chromium steels
Molybdenum steels
Chromium steels
Chromium-Vanadium steels
Tungsten steels
Nickel-Chromium-Vanadium steels
Silicon-Manganese steels

Description
non-resulfurized, (Mn 1.00% max)
resulfurized
rephosphorized and resulfurized
non-resulfurized, (Mn 1.00% to 1.65%)

Manganese steels
Description
13XX
Mn 1.75%
Nickel steels
23XX
25XX

Description
Ni 3.50%
Ni 5.00%

Nickel-Chromium steels
31XX
32XX
33XX
34XX

40XX
sulfur
41XX
molybdenum
43XX
46XX
47XX
48XX
51XX
51XXX
52XXX
61XX
86XX

Description
Ni 1.25%, Cr 0.65% or 0.80%
Ni 1.25%, Cr 1.07%
Ni 3.50%, Cr 1.50% or 1.57%
Ni 3.00%, Cr 0.77%

Mn 0.20% or 0.25% or Mn 0.25% molybdenum and 0.042


0.50, 0.80, or 0.95 chromium and 0.12, 0.20, or 0.30
1.83 nickel, 0.50 to 0.80 chromium, and 0.25 molybdenum
0.85 or 1.83 nickel and 0.20 or 0.25 molybdenum
1.05 nickel, 0.45 chromium, 0.20 or 0.35 molybdenum
3.50 nickel and 0.25 molybdenum
0.80, 0.88, 0.93, 0.95, or 1.00 chromium
1.03 chromium
1.45 chromium
0.60 or 0.95 chromium and 0.13 or 0.15 vanadium minimum
0.55 nickel, 0.50 chromium, and 0.20 molybdenum

87XX
88XX
92XX
50BXX
51BXX
81BXX
94BXX

B
L
Prefix M
Prefix E
Suffix H

0.55 nickel, 0.50 chromium, and 0.25 molybdenum


0.55 nickel, 0.50 chromium, and 0.35 molybdenum
2.00 silicon or 1.40 silicon and 0.70 chromium
0.28 or 0.50 chromium
0.80 chromium
0.30 nickel, 0.45 chromium, and 0.12 molybdenum
0.45 nickel, 0.40 chromium, and 0.12 molybdenum
Boron is added for enhanced hardenability
Lead added for enhanced machinability
Merchant quality steel
Electric-furnace steel
Hardenability requirement

UNS Designation System (Unified Numbering System)


Only represent chemical composition for an individual metal or alloy (not a metal
standard or specification)
Alphanumeric designation consisting of a Letter followed by five numbers
SAE were incorporated into the UNS system
UNS Descriptor
Dxxxxx
Fxxxxx
Gxxxxx
tool steels)
Hxxxxx
Jxxxxx
Kxxxxx
Sxxxxx
Txxxxx

Ferrous Metals
Specified mechanical properties steels
Cast irons
SAE and Former AISI Carbon and Alloy steels (except

UNS Descriptor
Wxxxxx
classified

Welding Filler Metals


Welding filler metals, covered and tubular electrodes

AISI H-steels (Hardenability requirement)


Cast steels
Miscellaneous steels and ferrous alloys
Heat and corrosion-resistant (Stainless) steels
Tool steels

by weld deposit composition

Example:
SAE 1040

G
1040
B (in SAE)
L (in SAE)

UNS G10400

Carbon and Alloy steel


SAE designation for 1040 steel
replaced by the fifth digit in UNS with 1 (Boron)
replaced by the fifth digit in UNS with 4 (Lead)

prefix E (in SAE)


furnace steel)
suffix H (in SAE)
K

replaced by the fifth digit in UNS with 6 (electric


replaced by Hxxxxx in UNS (Hardenability)
Carbon and alloy steels not referred to in SAE system

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