304/304L is dual certified stainless steel tubing is a very low carbon "18-8" austenitic chromium-nickel stainless steel with good corrosion resistance and superior resistance to inter-granular corrosion following welding or stress relieving. The low carbon percentage limits the formation of harmful carbides to such an extent that this grade may be safely used for most operations of welded construction, and where the service temperature is limited to 800° F.
It is non-magnetic in the annealed condition and not hardenable by heat treatment. Both hardness and tensile strength can be increased by cold working, which may cause slight magnetism. The dual certified 304/304L meets specifications for both 304 and 304L stainless steel, and may be interchanged and used safely for either grades application. 304/304L stainless steel is available in rounds, squares, rectangles, structural angle shapes, round and rectangular welded tube, and schedule pipe. 304 sheet and plate can be cut into shapes or rings on Speedy Metals High Definition Plasma cutter.
Mchineability and Weldability
Machinability is rated at 45% of B1112. Average cutting speed 75 ft/min. Easily welded by all commercial processes except forge or hammer welding. The resultant weld has good toughness and ductility. Annealing is recommended after forging to maintain maximum corrosion resistance. 304/304L can be forged between 2100°-2350° F. Do not forge below 1700° F
304/304L is not hardenable by heat treatment. Cold working increases tensile strength and hardness. Annealing range is between 1850° and 2050°F. Cool rapidly. Water should be used for heavier sections; air for lighter sections. The stress relieving range is between 400° and 750°F.
304/304L stainless generally conforms to ASTM A213, ASTM A312, AMS 5639
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||Elongation in 2"
The above values are average and may be considered as representative of 304/304L stainless
304/304L is used almost exclusively for parts requiring machining, welding, grinding, or polishing where good corrosion resistance is also required. It is a good general all-purpose stainless grade. Good in corrosive environments as in paper and chemical industries and cryogenic services. Used where corrosion resistance and good mechanical properties are primary requirements. 304/304L is widely accepted in such industries as dairy, beverage, and other food industries where the highest degree of sanitation and cleanliness is of prime importance. Parts for handling acetic, nitric, and citric acids, organic and inorganic chemicals, dyestuffs, crude and refined oils, etc., are fabricated from this material. Because of its lack of magnetism it is highly desirable for instruments. It is also widely used for architectural trim. 304 sheets are used in applications where corrosion resistance is required, but elevated temperatures are not involved. 304/304L finds particular use in applications requiring welding. 304/304L has good drawing, forming, and stamping properties.