High-Quality Tubes Products for Your Needs
High-quality stainless steel tubing plays a wide variety of essential roles in today's society. It can be found in everything from cars and trucks to HVAC units, and more. Read on to find out about the different types of high-quality tubing products available to today's industry leaders and how they help to keep American society running.
Types of Tubing
The average consumer doesn't realize this, but tubing materials, sizes, and configurations make a huge difference in terms of practical use. Well-respected tubing manufacturers typically offer both standardized tubing products and custom options for customers with unique specifications. Here's what to look for to choose the right tubes:
The Best Configuration
Business owners who need stainless steel tubing must first determine what configuration will best suit their unique needs. Their options include:
- Coiled tubing
Short, cut-to-length parts
Each of these tubing configurations must be manufactured to ASTM and/or ASME specifications to ensure that it will operate as intended in the field. If business owners can't find a standard configuration that works for their application, they can also ask about custom tube fabrication.
The Right Alloys
Customers also have a variety of corrosion-resistant stainless steel alloys to choose from. They include:
- 304/304L and 316/316L Austenitic
AL-6XN Super Austentic
2003, 2101, 2102, 2205, and 2507 Duplex
Zeron 100 Duplex
AL29-4C Super Ferritic
Don't see an alloy on this list that offers the right combination of strength, flexibility, and corrosion resistance? Reach out to talk to the manufacturer about other less common alloys that may be available. Each has its own unique set of mechanical properties, so it should be easy to find one that suits the application perfectly.
There are two things to consider when it comes to tubing sizes: the outside diameter and the wall thickness. Tubing products may be available in standardized sizes ranging from 0.75-3.5 inches for the outer diameter and 0.087 to 0.25 inches for the wall thickness. Some tubing products have more restrictive standardized sizes, but it's often possible to have those sizes reconfigured as part of the custom ordering process.
Common Applications for Stainless Steel Tubing
Most customers order stainless steel tubing when they are looking for a strong, durable, corrosion-resistant product. However, it's also perfectly fine to order stainless steel tubing for projects that require less structural strength if the appearance and corrosion resistance of stainless steel makes it worth the extra investment. Common applications for stainless steel tubing include:
Oil and Gas Wells
Coiled stainless steel tubes form the backbone of most modern oil and gas drilling operations. These days, industry leaders have stepped up to create alloys and wider-diameter tubing specifically for off-shore wells and other industry players operating in areas with high levels of environmental stress. As a result, some companies now offer standardized alloys designed to facilitate wider dimensions and lighter tubing.
Stainless steel coiled tubing plays a role in just about every step of the oil and gas extraction and transport processes. Companies in the energy sector trust these high-quality tubing products for:
- Upstream applications
Bottom hole pumps
The coiled tubing used in the oil and gas industries comes in standardized sizes from .25 to 1.75 inches, and wall thicknesses of up to .16 inches. Operations managers can order tubing in runs of up to 100,000 feet. They can also contact a reputable supplier for advice about customizing tubing products to meet unique specifications.
Automotive manufacturers use stainless steel tubing to meet demanding requirements. Just about every vehicle on the road today features at least a few tubing products. They're used to fabricate components such as:
Shock absorbers and struts
Fuel rail tubing
The tubing used in the automotive industry must meet stringent requirements. Component clearance issues can create a need for custom tubing solutions, as can auto designers' need to combat noise and vibration issues.
Stainless steel tubing is used extensively in the aerospace industry. Most applications call for 304 or 316 Austenitic tubing, which has austenite as its primary phase. The alloys also contain chromium, nickel, and sometimes nitrogen and manganese. The most common type of stainless steel alloy used in airplanes, as well as ground transportation machinery and equipment, is 304. It's very formable and can be welded readily to achieve complex shapes.
It's just as common to find stainless steel tubing in agricultural machines as it is to see it featured prominently in cars, trucks, and airplanes. Stainless steel alloys demonstrate enhanced mechanical properties with tight dimensional tolerances, which makes them perfect for fabricating hydraulic cylinders, grain augers, centerless grind for piston rods, and more. Agribusiness owners can also purchase tubing made from heat-treatable material grades for PTO shafts to reduce weight.
The chemical processing industry faces unique challenges, but finding the right tubing shouldn't be one of them. Both raw materials and finished products can be hazardous to human and environmental health, so keeping them contained is extremely important. Since these chemical products can also be highly corrosive, manufacturers need tubing solutions designed to withstand serious environmental pressures.
In many cases, 304, 316, or Duplex stainless steel tubing will get the job done, but some applications require the creation of unique alloys. Given the importance of preventing chemical spills and protecting both workers and the environment, most chemical processing plants purchase tubing that has been custom-manufactured to meet their demanding needs.
Reach Out to Discuss Options Today
Whether business owners see the specific alloys, configurations, or industrial applications that they need above or not, they should reach out to a tubing manufacturer to discuss their needs. It's often possible to fabricate custom stainless steel tubing to meet exacting specifications, but only with the help of a professional. Work with a reputable supplier that focuses on working with clients in the same industries or with similar specifications for their products to ensure that the whole fabrication and delivery process will go as smoothly as possible.