and frequently used for decorative trim and equipment subjected to high pressures and temperatures.
Martensitic Chromium.-These steels are magnetic and are readily hardened by heat treatment. They contain 12% to 18% chromium, 0.15% to 1.2% carbon, and up to 2.5% nickel. This group is used where high strength, corrosion resistance, and ductility are required.
ALLOY STEELS.-Steels that derive their properties primarily from the presence of some alloying element other than carbon are called ALLOYS or ALLOY STEELS. Note, however, that alloy steels always contain traces of other elements. Among the more common alloying elements are nickel, chromium, vanadium, silicon, and tungsten. One or more of these elements may be added to the steel during the manufacturing process to produce the desired characteristics. Alloy steels may be produced in structural sections, sheets, plates, and bars for use in the "as-rolled" condition. Better physical properties are obtained with these steels than are possible with hot-rolled carbon steels. These alloys are used in structures where the strength of material is especially important. Bridge members, railroad cars, dump bodies, dozer blades, and crane booms are made from alloy steel. Some of the common alloy steels are briefly described in the paragraphs below.
Nickel Steels.-These steels contain from 3.5% nickel to 5% nickel. The nickel increases the strength and toughness of these steels. Nickel steel containing more than 5% nickel has an increased resistance to corrosion and scale. Nickel steel is used in the manufacture of aircraft parts, such as propellers and airframe support members.
Chromium Steels.-These steels have chromium added to improve hardening ability, wear resistance, and strength. These steels contain between 0.20% to 0.75% chromium and 0.45% carbon or more. Some of these steels are so highly resistant to wear that they are used for the races and balls in antifriction bearings. Chromium steels are highly resistant to corrosion and to scale.
Chrome Vanadium Steel.-This steel has the maximum amount of strength with the least amount of weight. Steels of this type contain from 0.15% to 0.25% vanadium, 0.6% to 1.5% chromium, and 0.1% to 0.6% carbon. Common uses are for crankshafts, gears, axles, and other items that require high strength. This steel is also used in the manufacture of high-quality hand tools, such as wrenches and sockets.
Tungsten Steel.-This is a special alloy that has the property of red hardness. This is the ability to continue to cut after it becomes red-hot. A good grade of this steel contains from 13% to 19% tungsten, 1% to 2% vanadium, 3% to 5% chromium, and 0.6% to 0.8% carbon. Because this alloy is expensive to produce, its use is largely restricted to the manufacture of drills, lathe tools, milling cutters, and similar cutting tools.
Molybdenum.-This is often used as an alloying agent for steel in combination with chromium and nickel. The molybdenum adds toughness to the steel. It can be used in place of tungsten to make the cheaper grades of high-speed steel and in carbon molybdenum high-pressure tubing.
Manganese Steels.-The amount of manganese used depends upon the properties desired in the finished product. Small amounts of manganese produce strong, free-machining steels. Larger amounts (between 2% and 10%) produce a somewhat brittle steel, while still larger amounts (11% to 14%) produce a steel that is tough and very resistant to wear after proper heat treatment.
NONFERROUS METALS Nonferrous metals contain either no iron or only insignificant amounts used as an alloy. Some of the more common nonferrous metals Steelworkers work with are as follows: copper, brass, bronze, copper-nickel alloys, lead, zinc, tin, aluminum, and Duralumin.
NOTE: These metals are nonmagnetic.
Copper This metal and its alloys have many desirable properties. Among the commercial metals, it is one of the most popular. Copper is ductile, malleable, hard, tough, strong, wear resistant, machinable, weldable, and corrosion resistant. It also has high-tensile strength, fatigue strength, and thermal and electrical conductivity. Copper is one of the easier metals to work with but be careful because it easily becomes work-hardened; however, this condition can be remedied by heating it to a cherry red and then letting it cool. This process, called annealing, restores it to a softened condition. Annealing and softening are the only heat-treating procedures that apply to copper. Seams in copper are joined by riveting, silver brazing, bronze brazing, soft soldering, gas welding, or electrical arc welding. Copper is frequently used to give a protective coating to sheets and rods and to make ball floats, containers, and soldering coppers.Continue Reading