Stainless steel is both stunning in look and also practical in application when it comes to choosing a balustrading system that can last a lifetime. If you live in a coastal environment, all types of balustrade materials, be it stainless steel or alternative metals, will be subject to salt and wind exposure, industrial pollution and temperature fluctuation. However, if properly cared for and maintained, stainless steel will keep its 'as new' look for many years to come, far outperforming alternative metals.Grade 316 with a smooth surface finish should be selected as the minimum quality for all external applications. Further protection can be obtained by a process called pickling (removes surface contaminants but dulls the finish) or electropolishing (removes surface contaminants and brightens the finish).
Stainless steel is a corrosion resistant alloy steel that contains 10.5% or more chromium. By varying the quantities of elements added to stainless steel, a range of stainless steel grades, each with different properties, are produced. When nickel is added to stainless steel in sufficient amounts the crystal structure changes to "austenite". Austenitic grades are the most commonly used stainless steels accounting for more than 70% of production and are identified by their '300' series designation.Grade '304' (18% chromium, 8% nickel) is the most common stainless steel produced, however it is inadequate for many exterior coastal applications.
Grade '316' (17% chromium, 10% nickel, 2% molybdenum) offers the best corrosion resistance among standard stainless steels. It resists pitting and corrosion by most chemicals, and is particularly resistant to salt water corrosion.
Our Range...Oval Elite Balustrades, Frameless Glass Balustrades, Full Stainless Steel Balustrades, Marine Wire Rope, Handrails, Stair Balustrades and Glass Pool Fencing