Learning About Marine Grade Metals

Considerations for Carbon Steel Welding
September 8, 2017
Why Steel is Best For Barnes or Stables
September 15, 2017
Show all

Learning About Marine Grade Metals

When a given metal becomes exposed to wet or underwater environments, it may be necessary for marine grade metals to be present to prevent the original metal from failing. Marine grade metals must be able to resist corrosion in a water environment, and for this to happen, special alloys are added to these grades.

At Wasatch Steel, we have all the products needed for marine grade steel. Let’s look at some of the most common steel and other metal types, and how metal grading is achieved for them

Carbon Steel and Alloy Steel

Most carbon steel will not be well-suited for mare environments, but there are some grades available. These grades will include higher levels of manganese or chromium, which helps them resist corrosion. There are also marine grades of alloy steel – grades MD, ME, MF, MG and others can provide the kind of strength that normal steel alloy typically provides. These are commonly used in shipbuilding applications.

Stainless Steel

All grades of stainless steel have at least some level of corrosion resistance, but only the strongest will be good for use in marine environments. These grades have higher quantities of molybdenum, which helps resist pitting and salt water corrosion.

Galvanized Steel

Galvanized steel can be suitable for some marine environments, but not all. Zinc coatings for galvanized steel generally work better under cool temperatures in fresh water, rather than in warm temperatures in salt water. Salt water contains chlorides which can quickly erode zinc, and high temperatures can also accelerate this.


Marine grade aluminum is generally restricted to 5XXX and 6XXX grades, and has great corrosion resistance along with precipitation hardening. There will also be higher levels of chromium and manganese to protect from corrosion.


Cooper-nickel alloys exist, with higher levels of nickel and alloy. These products are commonly used for water lines and desalination equipment.

For more on marine grade metals and steel, or to find out about any of our steel services, speak to the experts at Wasatch Steel today.