A steel distributor often operates out of a warehouse to supply everyday consumers and companies. They may have items ranging from sheet metal to pipes and tubing. Additional shapes, including flat and plate, are also widely available. A distributor may also be able to custom cut your order. Read on for a list of definitions to familiarize yourself with when looking into local steel distributors.
Commercial Dealer – Used most frequently by contractors who are looking to build large structures, like a warehouse or storage unit. A dealer can help greatly in an industrial setting, however it's worth remembering that these are trained salespeople who may not have your better interests in mind. Do your research before settling on a dealer.
Alloy – Involves a mixture of elements into a solid form, and are used to improve upon an existing metal. The best known alloy is steel, which is composed of carbon and iron. Most metals today are alloys.
Galvanized Metal – Steel with a coating of zinc oxide. Great for building projects; long lasting. You can get galvanized pipe, tubing, etc.
Sheet Metal – Metal that is in flat, planed pieces. Can easily be cut and bent to fabricate different structures. The thickness of sheet metal is referred to as its "gauge," with larger numbers equaling thinner sheets.
A steel distributor will often offer a wide range of products, so be sure to choose the right one to fit your needs. Remember to think locally, as shipping costs can run extremely high the further out you look.
Whether you are an individual, or operating a business that needs steel or other metals to manufacture or fabricate various tools, appliances or pipes, a steel distributor can help you find the perfect material to meet your needs.
After steel is manufactured into sheets in a factory, it is purchased at a discount price by wholesalers or dealers. These dealers or warehouses act as the middle man to sell these products to consumers and businesses for commercial or private use. Many warehouses offer a drop in the per-unit price when a customer buys metal products in bulk.
Steel distributors and warehouses offer steel products in a variety of different sizes and grades. A common type is stainless steel, which is a steel chromium alloy that is resistant to rust and corrosion. This durable quality makes it ideal for many different uses, including jewelry, cutlery, home and office appliances, and for industrial purposes in the automotive or aviation industries. It is even used for construction purposes. A famous example is the top portion of the Chrysler Building in New York City, which is clad in stainless steel. Stainless steel is different from carbon steel, which can rust or corrode, and it is also completely recyclable.
A company selling such products may supply other metal products in bulk, including pipes, plates, wires and metal sheets in various standard or custom sizes and quality. Of course, the higher the quality, the higher the price tag, so it is important to ask questions and ask for several different price estimates before buying. This will help make sure that you are well-informed, and will purchase the highest quality steel that fits within your price range.