Explaining the Different Chain Grades

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Explaining the Different Chain Grades

Chrome chain on white background

Wasatch Steel is the most trusted steel supplier in Utah, and our products speak for themselves. We have everything you might need for your next steel project, from steel bars to cutting tools.

Chains are among some of our more popular products, and their uses are widespread. Steel chain comes in several different grades – what do these grades mean, and how do they differentiate between types of chain?

Chain Grading

Chain grading was originally put in place as a safety measure, and it’s based on the ultimate breaking strength of the chain in question. The number associated with the grade represents the maximum stress number in Newtons per millimeter squared for a given chain. So grade 70 chain can hold 700 Newtons per millimeter squared, and so on.

Grade 70 Chain

Grade 70 chain is manufactured in heat-treated carbon steel, and is generally used as a transport chain and for tie-downs on trailers and trucks. It is not approved for overhead lifting. It generally features a gold finish, which makes it easy to spot. It’s also a commonly used product in safety applications.

Grade 80 Chain

Grady 80 chain is also heat-treated, and it has a high strength-to-weight ratio that makes it perfect for overhead lifting. It’s common in the flatbed trucking industry to secure heavy loads, and also in many safety and towing applications.

Grade 100 Chain

Grade 100 chain provides about 25 percent higher work load limits than grade 80 chain, and is also approved for overhead lifting applications. It’s generally begun to replace grade 80 chain as the preference for flatbed load securing due to its increased strength, though its tie down chain is still not approved for overhead lifting.

Grade 120 Chain

Grade 120 chain is a new category of high performance chain. It’s a square link format, which reduces pressure on every part of the chain and can yield a work load limit up to 50 percent higher than grade 80 chain. Grade 120 chain has a bright blue finish, so like grade 70 chain, it will be easy to notice at first glance.

Ready to learn more? Our expert steel technicians at Wasatch Steel are standing by.