Structural steel is a universal product that is one of many steel types that can be used for many applications. Steel itself is handy for even more uses, from car parts to silverware. Sanilac Steel was founded in 1967 as a team of structural steel fabricators for Michigan companies and residents. With decades of experience in the field, we’re confident that we can tackle any metal needs you may have. Sanilac is also proud to provide structural steel design to help perfectly customize our services for your unique application. We also offer mobile welding services for assistance on the jobsite. If you have a need for structural steel, Sanilac has the answers!

Last time, we covered two of the four categories that steel can fall into based on its chemical and physical properties. Today, we’ll look at the remaining two groups and how they are utilized in society.


A well-known type, stainless steel is a great option for applications that require protection from rust. Composed of at least 10.5% chromium, stainless steel is ideal for structural elements and kitchen tools alike. There are three types of stainless steel that are distinguished by their crystalline makeup:

  • Austenitic. Composed of a crystalline structure with a face-centered cubic style, austenitic steel actually makes up a majority of the stainless steel in use today. This metal is ideal for numerous applications.
  • Ferritic. This structure is made of a body-centered cubic structure, equating to a higher quality of content but with a lower resistance to corrosion. Ferritic stainless steel cannot receive heat treatments for malleability or to increase hardness. However, this product can be strengthened by cold working.
  • Martensitic. While offering even less protection from corrosion, this class of stainless steel is stronger than the other two. It also happens to be magnetic and highly machinable, offering additional versatility for various uses.


Tool steel consists of several varieties and combinations of carbon and alloys in order to produce a metal that is resistant to damages and maintains a high rigidity. The process of producing tool steel must be done in a controlled environment due to the sensitive nature of the material composition. Based on your alloy and metal use, the method for crafting tool steel will change. Carbides are an essential part of the mix, being created from tungsten, chromium, vanadium and molybdenum. Tool steel can be divided into six classes, each one determined by the intensity of demands for the metal itself. Tool steel is ideal for crafting a wide assortment of tools. A good way to remember this notion is to know that tool steel is a useful material for gathering and processing other materials.

No matter the need or nature for steel, chances are that a steel type is available for that specific purpose. Highly durable and very versatile, structural steel can be used for many purposes. Comprised of the elite structural steel fabricators in Michigan, Sanilac has the tools and know-how to get your job done right. We have been specializing in structural steel fabrication for 50 years, and we’re ready to help you! Sanilac also provides consultation and design services to ensure that you are receiving the best product possible. Contact our safe and skilled team today to see how we can improve your project!