Stainless Steel Grades

Stainless Steel Grades

Stainless steel products are becoming more and more popular, due to the longevity of the finish and the durability of the material enables the it to performance at high standards for a longer period of time then other used materials.


Type 304 is the most common grade of stainless steel. This is the classic 18/8 alloy, and is sometimes known as "A2" in accordance with ISO3506. This alloy contains between 18 and 20% chromium, and between 8 and 10.5% nickel. This alloy isn't as conductive as carbon steel, but is a popular choice because it offers higher corrosion resistance and is easy to shape.


Type 316 is the second most common grade of stainless steel. This is most commonly used for food and surgical applications, but is also known as "marine grade" stainless steel due to it's increased corrosion resistance when compared to 304. This type of stainless steel is often used to manufacture watches, and is even used in the nuclear industry.

Other grades of stainless steel

The two most common types of stainless steel are 304 and 316, however there are a range of other alloys that you might come across. These include:

  • Type 301 - highly ductile material that offers good weldability, better resistance and strength than 304
  • Type 302 - the same corrosion resistance as type 304, but has a higher carbon content and is so slightly stronger
  • Type 303 - an easier-to-machine variation of type 304, thanks to the addition of sulfur and phosphorus
  • Type 309 - similar to 304, but offering increased temperature resistance