Most people know that different types of steel exist. However, the differences between those types of steel aren’t always obvious, and terms like “carbon steel” are often used without a clear explanation of what they mean.
We’ve covered other common types of steel, such as stainless steel, in other articles on our Polycase TechTalk blog, and we’ve even compared the performance of carbon steel vs. stainless steel enclosures. Today, we’ll talk more in-depth about carbon steel and its properties. How strong is carbon steel, what are its uses and how can it be used to create a high-performance electrical enclosure?
All forms of steel are alloys of different elements. The term “carbon steel” is a category that refers to steel that uses carbon as its only major alloying element. This is in contrast to materials like stainless steel, which uses a variety of other elements such as chromium and molybdenum in their alloying process.
Carbon steel is one of the most common forms of steel in our world today. You’ll find it used in steel frame construction, machine parts, tools and even chef’s knives. Each type of carbon steel has its own uses, and the category of carbon steel is further subdivided by carbon content:
Generally, carbon steel is considered a strong material, as evidenced by how frequently it’s used to make tools and construction materials. But just how strong is it?
Multiple ways exist to measure the strength of a piece of steel. The two most common that you may have heard of are tensile strength and yield strength. Here’s the difference between the two:
The average tensile and yield strength of a piece of carbon steel can vary tremendously depending on the steel’s carbon content and other manufacturing factors. AISI 1020 steel, a low-carbon mild steel, has a yield strength of 47,900 psi and a tensile strength of 65,300 psi.
Meanwhile, AISI 1080 steel, a high-carbon steel, has a yield strength of 84,800 psi and a tensile strength of 140,000 psi.
Since different types of carbon steel have such different properties and uses, the best way to find the right one is to compare the specs of each type with your application’s requirements. However, if you need a carbon steel enclosure, Polycase offers rugged and ready-to-use options for our customers.
The Polycase SB Series is one of today’s leading options for carbon steel electrical enclosures. The SB Series is created from high-quality carbon steel that offers the performance of steel at an affordable price point. Our SB series is created from 16-gauge cold-rolled carbon steel to ensure the high level of durability and performance that our customers expect from their electrical enclosures.
The SB series offers all kinds of advantages for electrical and electronics applications. The SB Series is NEMA 4X rated enclosures, which means that they’re rated for durable outdoor-grade protection against rain, snow, sleet and windblown dust. In addition, a special powder coating makes them more resistant to corrosion than other mild steel enclosures. All of these features are available at a lower price point than stainless steel enclosures or many comparable carbon steel enclosures.
Polycase SB-54 Carbon Steel NEMA Enclosure
At Polycase, the only thing more solid than our carbon steel enclosures is our uncompromising commitment to quality and customer service. For more information on our carbon steel enclosures, contact us online or call us at 1-800-248-1233.