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3 Phase Lightbulb
12-13-2005, 02:15 PM
I'm finally going to stock up on steel material and was wondering what things I'm missing from my shopping list. I'm going to order everything locally and probably pick it up myself.

Angle Iron: 1" x 1" x 1/8", 1.5" x 1.5" x 3/16", 1.25" x 1.25" x 1/8", and 2" x 2" x 3/16"

Square Tubes: 1.25" x 14ga, 1.25" x .120", 1" x 16g, and .75" x .083"

SCH40 Pipe: 1" ID (.133" wall), 3/4" ID (.113" wall), 1/2" ID (.109" wall)

Flats: 3/16" x 1.25", 1/4" x 1.25", 1/8" x 1.25"

Flats: 3/16" x 1", 1/4" x 1", 1/8" x 1"

Flats: 3/16" x 1.5", 1/4" x 1.5", 1/8" x 1.5"

Steel Plate: 3/16", 1/4"

Steel Sheet: 11ga, 16ga, 20ga

I've got plenty of solid rounds so I don't need any of those...

Any "special" sizes that I should be considering? The 1.25" and 1.5" flats seem to be what I have been using the most (mainly for tabs/brackets/etc).

-Adrian


[This message has been edited by 3 Phase Lightbulb (edited 12-14-2005).]

aboard_epsilon
12-13-2005, 02:22 PM
Steel for keyways.
all the best.mark

snowman
12-13-2005, 02:26 PM
I find that having some 1/8" thick strips, 1" wide, come in handy quite often. Often times you dont quite need the 1/4" thick.

Same goes for 1" x 1/8 wall angle iron. Just seems great for fabbing something up quick.

For steel sheet I prefer 11, 14 and 18...but that's just me. 11 is 1/8, 14 is 1/16 and 18 is body panel work.

-Jacob

Evan
12-13-2005, 02:29 PM
Expanded steel mesh is handy material.

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-13-2005, 02:33 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by snowman:
I find that having some 1/8" thick strips, 1" wide, come in handy quite often. Often times you dont quite need the 1/4" thick.

Same goes for 1" x 1/8 wall angle iron. Just seems great for fabbing something up quick.

For steel sheet I prefer 11, 14 and 18...but that's just me. 11 is 1/8, 14 is 1/16 and 18 is body panel work.

-Jacob</font>


I've got the 1/8" x 1.25" strip (flats) in the list... I;ve also got 3/16 and 1/4" flats (both 1.25 and 1.5" wide).. The 1" wide might be a good addition though. The 1.25" lets me weld it to 1.25" square tubes nicely. I wanted the 16 and 20ga so I can cut it with my shear.. The 11ga and thicker plate I'll cut with plasma.

-Adrian

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-13-2005, 02:37 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Evan:
Expanded steel mesh is handy material.</font>


Yup I was thinking of getting that... I saw it came in 1/4 diamond, 3/4" diamond, and various thickness, etc... I'm trying to think what I would use it for though.. I know lots of people in my welding class were building fire pits, and I think I saw someone use it to build a cabinet door (with angle as the frame)... Maybe it would be good as flooring for future buggy projects.

-Adrian

Evan
12-13-2005, 02:42 PM
It's good for maklng a shoe scraper mat. Good for screens and guards for moving or hot items that need airflow. Good for a guard on an exhaust pipe for instance.

Kansas_Farmer
12-13-2005, 03:23 PM
I built a 2 step bench thingie out of thin wall 1"x1" square tube and used expanded steel mat for the tops of the steps. Works out great for standing on to get over the hood of my F350, and for sittin on when I'm thinkin.....yea, that's it...thinkin!

http://users.atcjet.net/b/brendonh/public_html/images/stool.jpg

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-13-2005, 03:36 PM
Yup, that's certainly a good application for it.. For things like that, I would have personally built it out of wood only because I like to work with both wood/steel and I enjoy building things out of steel that I can't build out of wood http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

-Adrian

ug
12-13-2005, 04:08 PM
I could use some 1-3/4 .120 DOM - about 8 sticks please http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif lol.

I second the 1/8 strips. Come in handy all the time.

Joel
12-13-2005, 05:43 PM
Flats are so handy and so cheap that I stock from 3/4” to 2” in all of the common thicknesses, plus several pieces up to about 4” wide (long drops are usually enough for me in the wider sizes). 1x1x1/8” angle never stays around very long.

Fasttrack
12-13-2005, 06:20 PM
Yeah, i'd go with some strap as small as 3/4. Its handy to have around for all sorts of stuff. I go through more strap than anything else, well pipe is up there too, but mostly strap.

CCWKen
12-13-2005, 07:57 PM
I don't see any 18ga. sheet to make your splash shields, fenders and such. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif

wierdscience
12-13-2005, 08:07 PM
Square bar comes in handy,so does rectangular tubing 1x2"11ga is stout.

torker
12-13-2005, 08:19 PM
Yup...what weird said...I use a lot of 1/2", 3/4" and 1" square hot rolled.
I also like to have a decent size chunk of 1/2" mild steel plate kicking around also.
Some 1/2",5/8" and 3/4" OD O/1 is handy too.

BillH
12-13-2005, 09:13 PM
Maybe some bearing bronzes, never know. Ofcourse when you think you have it all, you'll still need to get something else.

snowman
12-13-2005, 09:59 PM
second on the bearing bronze...you only need a foot of each size, 1/4, 1/2, 1, 1 1/2" diameters....it'll come in handy.

-Jacob

spope14
12-13-2005, 10:01 PM
If for a machining basic operation, I would also pick up some 1/2 square, 1" square 1018 solid. Also some 2 x 1/2, 2 x 1, 3 x 1/2, 4 x 1/2 1018. For turning, you most deffinately want 1/4, 1/2, 3/4, AND 1" Dia 1117 or 1214 for basic items. With your comments, I think you most likely have these. These diameters might be good to have in aluminums, and if you wish a bit o' brass, 3/8 and 3/4 diameters are good to have on hand.

Even for a welding and fab set-up, the flats I mentioned would be great.

Good luck on your purchase

lugnut
12-13-2005, 10:23 PM
I’ve always found that if I need a piece of steel, what ever size it be, I buy a whole length, (20 ft) then have them cut it to 10 ft lengths so I can haul it in my runt S-10 pickup. That way I’ve built quite a collection for use. One thing you might want to add to your list is some heave flat bar stock ½ , ¾, and 1” X 2 or 4 inches wide. Your not going to want full lengths of these but several feet of each will do. There are a lot of times you need to machine a piece from heavier stock.
LOL
Mel

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-14-2005, 12:00 PM
Thanks for the input.. I've requested a quote from a few local steel suppliers so I'm just waiting for prices.. I'm buying full size 4x8' plate/sheets and aprox 100' each of everything so unless this stuff rusts away I should have a good steel supply for the next xxx years.. I'd rather take a $$$ hit now than keep buying little stuff here, little stuff there, etc.. I'll have to also inquire about 1x2" square tubing and maybe a little 2x4" x 4x4".. I can see that come in very handy in small qty..

-Adrian


-Adrian

snowman
12-14-2005, 12:30 PM
Adrian,

If you are buying locally, have them quote delivery too. That way you can keep it in 20 foot lengths. It saves your butt that one time you need 12 feet of something instead of 10.

Your idea of ordering a bunch of everything now is great for a home shop guy. I can't do it because of taxes...but I wish I could!

-Jacob

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-14-2005, 12:44 PM
In the quote that I sent off, I requested that nothing longer than 12' and to cut 4x8' plate/sheets in half (Easier to handle). I also want to pick up the steel myself to save a little more $$$ on the quote. If I need something more than 12' long I can always TIG more length on later.

-Adrian

JRouche
12-14-2005, 04:14 PM
I understand you are going local for your steel but dont forget mail order, couple ton shouldn't cost too much to UPS and I here a company called industrial metal sales or something has a great customer relations dept http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif

Sorry http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-14-2005, 04:21 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by JRouche:
I understand you are going local for your steel but dont forget mail order, couple ton shouldn't cost too much to UPS and I here a company called industrial metal sales or something has a great customer relations dept http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif

Sorry http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//wink.gif </font>


Yup, but I didn't realize Industrial Metal Sales was a Circus Side Show until after I placed my order with them.. They provided a freak show instead of steel so I canceled.. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//smile.gif

I priced out the order at www.metalsdepot.com (http://www.metalsdepot.com) and they want $2651 for the steel and $274 for shipping so I'm hoping I can get it for half that price locally.

-Adrian

-Adrian

operose
12-14-2005, 04:41 PM
your post has inspired me to ask for a big load of steel for christmas... to go with my new welder

Dog help us all

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-14-2005, 04:53 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by operose:
your post has inspired me to ask for a big load of steel for christmas... to go with my new welder

Dog help us all</font>


Don't get it from Industrial Metal Sales, because you'll get a Load of something else instead http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

Rustybolt
12-14-2005, 04:57 PM
Adrain. Google the Thomas Register and see what Steel suppliers are near you. They usually have a minimum (50-100). make sure you know the lengths your stock comes in before you show up at the loading dock.

I usually us A.M.Castle or their small lot subsidiary MetalExpress.

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-14-2005, 05:02 PM
The local place that is working on my quote right now told me their stock comes in 20' lengths so they are going to cut everything in half. I'm ordering 100 feet in each size so I should get Qty 10 of 10' lengths of each size.

-Adrian

JRouche
12-14-2005, 05:28 PM
I get all my steel from IMS. Industrial metal supply outta Sun Valley, Ca.

They have really good prices and stock and will ship to me, about 60 or so miles, for free.

Not much good to you Adrian but worth while for folks in So. Cal. and Phoenix, Az.

JRouche

http://www.industrialmetalsupply.com/

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-14-2005, 06:13 PM
JRouche,

Thanks for the link.. I put my order into their online quote system and we'll see what kind of price(s) they come up with for the same order I've sent quote requests for to other venders.. Even if their shipping cost is too high, hopefully I'll get a good idea what the material costs so I know what the general prices are from several vendors..

-Adrian

operose
12-14-2005, 06:46 PM
There's a place near me called Jefford's Steel (coincidentally, my subaru legacy is their old company car..) they also have a location in plattsburgh new york and williston VT, I think... the local branch is most likely where I'll be getting my stock since they've never dicked me on price before and it's so close!

motorworks
12-14-2005, 07:37 PM
Hex Stock
13" lenghts
1.25" steel and brass
1.750" steel and brass
For those "odd nuts" LH metric in Brass
that the customer just can't find!!
I keep some on hand. Quick money maker!

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-15-2005, 12:43 PM
Here are the prices per length that I got from a local steel supplier:



Angle Iron: 1.00" x 1.00" x 1/8" (20' each) $10.40
Angle Iron: 1.25" x 1.25" x 1/8" (20' each) $14.60
Angle Iron: 1.50" x 1.50" x 3/16" (20' each) $19.80
Angle Iron: 2.00" x 2.00" x 3/16" (20' each) $26.95

Square Tube: 1.25" x 14ga (24' each) $34.00
Square Tube: 1.25" x .120" (24' each) $36.20
Square Tube: 1.00" x 16g (24' each) $17.50
Square Tube: 0.75" x .083" (24' each) $17.28

Flat: 3/16" x 1" (20' each) $10.40
Flat: 1/4" x 1" (20' each) $11.05
Flat: 1/8" x 1" (20' each) $6.30

Flat: 3/16" x 1.25" (20' each) $11.52
Flat: 1/4" x 1.25" (20' each) $16.50
Flat: 1/8" x 1.25" (20' each) $9.43

Flat: 3/16" x 1.5" (20' each) $15.00
Flat: 1/4" x 1.5" (20' each) $18.20
Flat: 1/8" x 1.5" (20' each) $9.10

SCH40 Pipe: 1/2" ID (.109" wall) (21' each) $16.57
SCH40 Pipe: 3/4" ID (.113" wall) (21' each) $19.50
SCH40 Pipe: 1" ID (.133" wall) (21' each) $29.60

Steel Plate: 3/16" x 4x8 foot (4x8 cut in half) $164.56
Steel Plate: 1/4" x 4x8 foot (4x8 cut in half) $251.00

Steel Sheet: 11ga 4x8 foot (4x8 cut in half) $120.00
Steel Sheet: 16ga 4x8 foot (4x8 cut in half) $60.00
Steel Sheet: 18ga 4x8 foot (4x8 cut in half) $50.24


Does anything look out of order price wise? Their price for plate is higher than Metalsdepot.com so I'm not sure what's going on there, but everything else is cheaper.

-Adrian

Owen McGee
12-15-2005, 04:39 PM
I came in late on this, so maybe I missed something.

Why are you stockpiling thousands of dollars of metal? Are you moving to Outer Mongolia where steel deliverys take months? Are you setting up shop on Mars? Unless you are in a very isolated area, there are companys nearby that will do this for you....they are called steel service centers.

Trying to stockpile substancial amounts of metal is a losing game. If you stock up on 3/8 hex aluminum, you're gonna need 5/16 hex aluminum. If you stock up on 5/16 hex aluminum, you're gonna need 5/16 hex brass.

I have a bunch of 3" dia steel slugs that I bought years and years ago from a local surplus guy. I have a piece I need to make right now. I need 3 1/2" dia stock. Don't think I can knurl this 3" up far enough to use it.

I don't make any effort anymore to keep any particular metal stock on hand. I have a bin of short drops in the corner that I draw out of from time to time. Otherwise, I go to my steel supplier and get what I need at that time.

If I had to start from scratch I might get bars of 1", 1 1/2" and 2" stock 3'long in a free machining steel. That's about it. Then buy as you go, buy a bar instead of a cut piece in common sizes, and build up slowly.

My duo centavos

OMcG

jkilroy
12-15-2005, 05:56 PM
It might be that Adrian, like me, lives in a town without a single steel sales place. There is a pipe sales place and the only place that sells steel is actually a machine shop that marks there stock up so far that you can't see the price. It might be cheaper to buy online and ship it.

The closest place to me that is a honest stocking dealer is in Jackson, about an hour to the east. They will not deliver here unless I buy like Adrian is talking about now, in bulk.

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-15-2005, 06:29 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Owen McGee:

Trying to stockpile substancial amounts of metal is a losing game. If you stock up on 3/8 hex aluminum, you're gonna need 5/16 hex aluminum. If you stock up on 5/16 hex aluminum, you're gonna need 5/16 hex brass.

I have a bunch of 3" dia steel slugs that I bought years and years ago from a local surplus guy. I have a piece I need to make right now. I need 3 1/2" dia stock. Don't think I can knurl this 3" up far enough to use it.

I don't make any effort anymore to keep any particular metal stock on hand. I have a bin of short drops in the corner that I draw out of from time to time. Otherwise, I go to my steel supplier and get what I need at that time.

If I had to start from scratch I might get bars of 1", 1 1/2" and 2" stock 3'long in a free machining steel. That's about it. Then buy as you go, buy a bar instead of a cut piece in common sizes, and build up slowly.

My duo centavos

OMcG</font>


I placed a large steel order containing items I always need (angle iron, flats, steel pipe, plates, and sheets).

If stocking up on items I always need/use is a loosing game, then I would say we're playing different games.

You may be happy with the specalized 32 peice lego block set, but I'd much rather have the general purpose 1001 peice lego block set in my play room.

-Adrian

motorworks
12-15-2005, 07:13 PM
"Are you moving to Outer Mongolia where steel deliverys take months? Are you setting up shop on Mars"

I too have to "stock up". I am not in Outer Mongolia, but average ship time from the steel supplier is 10 days.When a deep sea dragger comes in for a 24 hr stop over and needs it now...
The extra stock sure comes in handy!

fishfrnzy
12-15-2005, 09:44 PM
3P, Having bought and sold metals for a living for almost 20 years the following may help you with your purchse. after your last experince you can make you life easier buy buying in full lengths. If you can't handle full lengths have them cut your whole bundle in 1/2 rather than buying 6' pieces.
HR angle, rd, flat, channel ar 20'
sq tube is 20 or 24'
alum flat, rd, sq 12'
alum tube 20-24'
alum angle 16' or 25'
I wouldn't pay more than .60-.75 on a per lb basis before freight on any steel except alloy and tool steel. Your best bet is to quote with 2 or 3 local suppliers. one of them will want your order. Motor freigt will run .20-.30 per lb depending on carrier, distance and suppliers discount. Good luck.

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-15-2005, 10:21 PM
fishfrnzy,

Yup I bought everything today from a local steel supplier in 20' and 24' lengths, and 4x8' sheets. I requested everything be cut in half and I'm picking the steel up myself when it's ready on Tuesday.

-Adrian

cam m
12-16-2005, 09:18 AM
Adrian
I read this too late to be of any assistance so I'll keep quiet on the advise, but WHAAAA HOOO! I can only imagine the fun you'll have with all that stuff so handy. No shopping lists, delays for material, flying trips to the local distributor for metal... As far as the size issues, it can be somewhat annoying,but if you're building for yourself as you seem to be you can substitute and mix and match to what you may have on hand.
Congrats,
Cam

3 Phase Lightbulb
12-16-2005, 10:45 AM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by cam m:
Adrian
I read this too late to be of any assistance so I'll keep quiet on the advise, but WHAAAA HOOO! I can only imagine the fun you'll have with all that stuff so handy. No shopping lists, delays for material, flying trips to the local distributor for metal... As far as the size issues, it can be somewhat annoying,but if you're building for yourself as you seem to be you can substitute and mix and match to what you may have on hand.
Congrats,
Cam</font>


Thanks! You're obviously on the same planet that I'm on, isn't it great? http://bbssystem.com/images/smiles/icon_cool.gif I've been wanting to stock up on this stuff ever since I started putting my shop together. I only build for myself (I.E: hobby shop/money pit) so like you said I can always substitute (Which I've been having to do constantly) so it's going to be extra motivating and extra productive actually having the bulk of what I need always on hand.

-Adrian

JRouche
12-16-2005, 10:45 PM
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by 3 Phase Lightbulb:
I've been wanting to stock up on this stuff ever since I started putting my shop together. -Adrian</font>

There can never be enough metal in a metal shop. Hopefully your area is drier than mine. I also stock pile steel and most of the structural stuff is still "nice" looking the sheet metal has taken on a fine shade of orange, with texture. Still usable, just kind of a bummer watching my sheet metal go semi-south.

Now, you have the carbon metal, time to buy a truck load each, of the variety without carbon http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif I prefer the type with lotts-O chrome, it really is the perfect metal. JRouche

Evan
12-17-2005, 12:53 PM
Time to start stocking up on the aluminum. That will tax even Adrian's wallet http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//biggrin.gif

My mill project has consumed about 1/2 of a 3/4" thick 4x8 sheet of 6061-T6511 tooling plate plus a lot of other stock. http://bbs.homeshopmachinist.net//eek.gif

I keep a lot of aluminum as well as some steel around. Don't have to worry about rust on any of the stuff inside as we don't have rust here (except for some stock I "inheireted"). We have to import or leave it outside for a few years it if we want to see what it looks like.

wierdscience
12-18-2005, 10:32 AM
Something I forgot to mention is if you have more than one local company to deal with you may try faxing a list to all of them and see what they bid.
We do it all the time at work,One outfit will be cheaper on some sections ,but not on others.We usually end up splitting the oder between two companies.