Steel Service Centers
Steel service centers are a necessary component in the production process of steel goods. They are used in many industries, including construction, automotive manufacturing, electronics, shipbuilding and the aerospace industry.
Service centers purchase various alloys of raw steel such as carbon steel, then process and treat them to fit the specific needs of their customers. The purchased raw steel undergoes different processes in service centers, and manufacturers may choose from hot rolled steel, cold rolled steel or aluminized steel, among others. These processes yield various types of steel to fit manufacturers’ specific needs, which include high strength steel, spring steel, tool steel and many other varieties. A very long list of important steel products, including products like plate armor, shipbuilding materials, construction materials and many other examples, are processed in steel service centers. They offer a large inventory of steel in different pre-made shapes, including I beams and steel beams, steel plates, steel strip, and steel tubing. Galvanized steel products are also available from manufacturers and service centers. Because these steel service centers have a large inventory of steel at all times, ready to process and ship, the manufacturers save time and money because they do not have to worry about housing the steel themselves.
Some Leading Manufacturers
Skokie, IL | 847-966-3000
We are an ISO/TS 16949 certified company that maintains an extensive inventory averaging of 25,000 tons which results in quick turnaround on all orders. All of our products come with uncompromising performance and we can tailor our items to meet your needs. If you are looking for a supplier who offers short lead times and outstanding steel products then you have come to the right place. Give one of our representatives a call today!
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Adrian, MI | 888-638-2517
At All Metals, we have served as one of the most reliable and well-stocked suppliers of industrial steel products since 1965. We provide cold rolled steel and hot rolled steel in a huge variety of shapes in addition to steel channels, steel tees, steel tubing, and steel plate. As one of the most reliable online sources of industrial metal products, you can count on All Metals to deliver the steel products you need! Connect with us today!
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Pompton Plains, NJ | 800-838-1978
We keep all of your production goals in mind which is why we will quickly deliver your products and you can count on Metal Associates to work with you every step of the way. We put a focus on our customers’ needs and there are a number of advantages integrated into our solutions. We are expert problem solvers and there is no minimum order requirements. If you have any questions then please give us a call today!
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Willowbrook, IL | 630-850-3800
TPC Metals serves the industry as a leader in the supply of industrial steel products and steel services. We are a full line flat rolled steel service center, providing precision sheeting and slitting services. But we know that precision and quality are only one part of the equation. We also provide you with the responsiveness and speed that allows you to get the exact products you need, when you need them! For all of your steel needs, TPC Metals has you covered!
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Houston, TX | 713-672-9513
Since 1986, Port Metal Processing has been offering exceptional steel products and services. From processing and finishing to delivery, you can count on us to provide you with the right steel solutions for all of your applications! We can provide you with steel coils, sheets, shapes, bars, angles, and channels, in addition to many processing services. Check out our website to see our complete offering of steel products and services, and give us a call!
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70% of steel purchased by steel service centers undergoes some type of pre-production processing. The steel is often aluminized, a cost-saving procedure where cold rolled carbon steel is hot-dipped in molten aluminum-silicon alloy that coats both sides of the sheet of metal. After this process, the steel has the lower cost and lighter weight of steel as well as the rust-resistant, conductive properties and smooth finish of aluminum. Aluminized steel takes on properties of both high strength aluminum and high strength steel. Steel may also go through a rolling process, which compresses and stretches the metal into an even grainflow through continuous rolling. Steel service centers will hot roll steel to obtain many different shapes, but hot rolled steel is generally characterized by lower structural integrity than cold rolled steel. During this process, steel is heated past its recrystallization temperature, which is around 1650°F, and it is pushed through rollers. The steel becomes very pliable and easily movable when heated, and as it cools its surface may oxidize, causing it to become less smooth and to take on a blue-grey finish. For steel that needs to be strong and have high structural integrity, steel service centers use cold rolling, which is done at or near room temperature. Because no heat is involved in this process, the risk of surface oxidization is eliminated. The shape range is very limited, though, because the steel is not heated anywhere near its melting point.
Service centers offer a variety of different types of steel to meet manufacturers’ different needs. High strength steel (also sometimes known as High Strength Low Alloy, or HSLA, steel), which is optimal for transportation equipment because of its structural integrity, is often cold rolled or put through a post-cold rolled process such as quenching; quenching involves immersing the steel in cold water or oil in order to cool it. HSLA is alloyed with a number of metals, including copper, silicon, nickel chromium and phosphorus, for greater resistance to corrosion. Also, columbium, copper, vanadium and titanium can be added in small quantities for strengthening. More alloying elements typically increase material production and costs. Spring steel, a low-alloy, medium carbon steel with a high yield strength is hardened or tempered and often heat treated. Spring steel features silicon as an alloying component; the presence of silicon in the alloy gives the steel some flexibility. Spring steel is an adequate choice for manufacturers who need a strong, heat and abrasion resistant metal to make tools or the molds for plastic injection molding. It often contains additives such as cobalt and nickel to improve its performance under high temperatures, and its properties are increased through quenching in oil or air hardening.
Steel service centers have been in operation in the United States since the early colonial period. At that time, they were known as Iron Mongers, and only about 10% of all steel products in use at that time passed through service centers. Since then around 30% of industrial steel products and about 45% of specialty steel products are processed in steel service centers. Every steel product passing through a steel service center must be approved by the American Society for Testing and Materials, commonly referred to as ASTM, a non-profit organization dedicated to setting strict standards and ensuring the quality of products, materials systems and services, including all steel products, processes and materials. The ASTM’s annually-updated book of standards covers steel pipes, tubes and fittings, steel plates, steel for machine structural use and steel for special purposes. More recently, the ASTM has developed new standards for annealed steel conductors. By combining the standards of annealed copper clad steel wire and hard drawn concentric-lay stranded copper clad steel conductors, ASTM will raise awareness about copper clad steel as an alternative to solid copper, increasing its production within steel service centers.