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San Diego | Orange Fluid System Technologies

Your Authorized Swagelok Product and Service Center

Know Your Stainless Steel

All 316 stainless steel is not the same. The amount of chromium and nickel in your steel are critical for corrosion resistance, as well as maintaining its ductility, which improves machinability and is required for thermal cycling.

The percentages of both elements can vary, even while maintaining ASTM standards. 
Stainless materials

Swagelok considers the midpoint of the standard to be the minimum requirement in the stainless steel it uses, a requirement that maximizes performance over the the life of the fitting.material content
Lower levels of either element can cause parts to fail. The cracked nut below, from another manufacturer, was 316 steel with only a 10.1% nickel content that failed after installation in a corrosive environment.

Swagelok ensures these higher levels by buying only from approved mills. Control over everything, from the elevated alloy chemistry to the inspection steps that are used to during validation, is in place. The bar stock is unique to Swagelok only. It cannot be purchased by anyone else, as Swagelok buys the complete stock. 

Our testing is extensive and includes 100% ultrasonic analysis (to detect abnormalities) as well as eddy current testing (to detect cracks). What this means to you is greater uniformity of the raw materials, allowing uniform manufacturability of all our components. 

Although the design of the fitting is instrumental in its success, never forget the importance of the raw material bar stock.