The advantages of metal are many: it is durable, easy to recycle, and it can be shaped into all kinds of components.
But metal is not just metal. It is available in many types, price ranges and qualities.
In this post, you will get an overview of the three metals: aluminium, iron and stainless steel.
Aluminium is the third most abundant element on earth – only overtaken by oxygen and silicon. It is used to make everything from tinfoil, soda cans to wheels rims.
– a light metal
The biggest advantage of aluminium is that it is a light material. In fact, it weighs only a third of steel. For you, this means a reduced energy consumption during transport and thereby lower delivery costs.
– durable and stainless
Aluminium is durable as well as stainless. You can therefore use your aluminium components outside without any problems. Even in the winter weather, the components will stand strong.
– an expensive metal
The advantages of aluminium are great. That, you pay for. Aluminium is a relatively expensive metal which you should take into consideration.
Iron is one of the most used metals because you can get hold of it almost everywhere. It is a heavy metal extracted from iron ore that you will find in countries such as China, Brazil, Australia, Russia and India.
– an inexpensive metal
As said, iron is easy to obtain, and therefore it is also an affordable metal to work with. However, it is heavy, so you should expect higher shipping costs than e.g. for aluminium.
– durable, but not stainless
Iron is a durable metal – as long as you keep it away from water and moisture. It is not stainless. If the component is to be in contact with moisture, it should be surface treated, or potentially manufactured in another metal.
Stainless steel is a term for steel that contains at least 10.5% chromium. The chromium and various other elements provide a high corrosion resistance – meaning that the metal does not rust in water.
– metal of different types
You can get stainless steel in different types, including 304 and 316. The cheaper of the two, 304, is water resistant, while 316 also withstands acid. The latter is particularly relevant in the food industry, where the metal often is in contact with acidic liquids and products.
– an expensive material
High-quality stainless steel can be an expensive metal. You should also mind that stainless steel is a heavy material. Therefore, the freight costs will be higher than with aluminium.