The Three Common Forms of Carbon Steel

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The Three Common Forms of Carbon Steel

As a top steel supplier, we at Wasatch Steel have a wide variety of carbon steel options for your next project. Carbon steel, which is useful for a wide range of projects and has great corrosion resistance, comes in a few different individual styles.

What are these categories, and how do they impact the ways you can work on them? Let’s take a look at each of the three main forms of carbon steel.

Low Carbon Steel

Also called mild steel, low carbon steel is a type that contains between 0.04 percent and 0.3 percent carbon content. Low carbon steel includes a huge variety of shapes, from flat sheep all the way to a structural beam, and this is one of the largest overall groups when it comes to carbon steel.

Depending on the properties you require, other elements may be added or decreased within the mild steel. An example here is drawing quality – carbon level is low while aluminum is added. For structural steel, on the other hand, carbon levels are higher while the manganese content is increased during production.

Medium Carbon Steel

Medium carbon steel generally comes with a carbon content range between 0.31 percent and 0.6 percent, plus a manganese content that runs between 0.06 percent and 1.65 percent. Medium carbon steel is meant to be stronger than low carbon steel but is also more difficult to form, weld and cut as a result. In many cases, heat treatment is used on medium carbon steel, leading to significant hardening and tempering.

High Carbon Steel

High carbon steel has a carbon range between 0.61 percent and 1.5 percent and is also sometimes called carbon tool steel. This type of steel is very tough to cut, bend or weld, and becomes very hard and brittle after heat treatment is completed.

For more on carbon steel types, or to learn about any of our other steel services, speak to the pros at Wasatch Steel today.