Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The Three Kinds of Steel

For the past 10 years, my bike has been a great companion for me on running errands to the market for the family especially during calamities where tricycles in the area are incapable of travelling because of floods. A simple ride from our house to the rice fields breathing the fresh cold air that touches my skin which helped me cope up with my problems cheering me up whenever I’m feeling sad.  It is very special for me because it witnessed all the special memories of me and my late grandfather who was also fond of biking to different places where we go fishing and kiting. Sadly, I have to bid goodbye to it because it’s already rusty and worn out. I tried to repaint it to restore its former glory but after a year, rusts are eating it again and some of its sprockets are not in a good condition too. After my grandpa past away, I do not have someone to accompany me again on my adventure but today is different. I am planning to join a biking group that can bring me to different beautiful places here in the Philippines. My bike’s old and its frame was made of metal and I’m thinking to buy a frame that’s lighter. Hmm. I really don’t have an idea of what kind of bike frame to buy which prompted me to do a research about the kinds of steel.

Upon searching the net, this is what I’ve found:

Carbon steel is the product formed when carbon and iron is combined. Manufacturers add carbon to iron to solidify its structures to strengthen the metal. It can be further categorized into three groups depending on their carbon content:

Low Carbon Steels
It contains up to 0.3% of carbon. They are very ductile and are used to make flat-rolled sheets or steel strips that are utilized to create ships, wire products, car bodies, domestic appliances, tin plates and more. Low-carbon steels are cheaper, but they cannot be altered by heat treatment, which is why they generally are used for fabrication and paneling purposes.

Medium Carbon Steels

It contains 0.3 – 0.6% of carbon. This kind of steel is cheap and used in making things such as axles, gears, shafts, rails, pipelines and couplings.

High Carbon Steels

High carbon steels are very hard to weld because it contains more than 0.6% of carbon. It also has a higher composition of Manganese which increases its hardness. Steels of this type are very susceptible to heat which allows it to be shaped into different forms. High carbon steels have greater tensile strength which makes it suitable for making cutting tools, blades, springs and high-strength wires.


According to Wikipedia, “Every steel is an alloy but not all steels are alloy.” Alloy steels are steels produced with two or more elements other than carbon and iron. Common elements that are added to make alloy steels are molybdenum, manganese, nickel, silicon, chromium, boron and vanadium.  The physical properties of these steels are modified by the other elements, to give them greater hardness, durability, corrosion resistance, or toughness as compared to carbon steel. To achieve such properties, these alloys often require heat treatment.
Alloys are subdivided into two groups, the high alloy steel and the low alloy steel. High alloy steels are steels that are alloyed more than eight of its weight. Those steels that are alloyed below 8% percent of its weight are called low alloy steel.
If the carbon level in a low alloy steel is in the medium to high range, it can be difficult to weld. To solve this problem, the carbon content is lowered to a range of 0.1% to 0.3% increasing its weldability. To form a high strength, low alloy steels, alloying elements are also reduced.

Stainless Steels

Do you believe that stainless steels are also alloys? It is a steel alloy with a minimum of 10% chromium content. It is commonly used in making table cutlery, jewelry, watch bands, surgical instruments, as well as in the aviation industry. Its familiar luster has also been appropriated for many famous architectural designs in the US.

Though I didn’t find exactly what I’m looking for a bike, I still learned something new about steels. Thanks for following this post! 

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Steel Fabrication VS 3D Printing

Steel fabrication is an ancient practice and was used by our ancestors to create weapons to protect themselves from wild animals or for hunting food. As technology became more sophisticated and more advanced, molding or smelting metals of any kind, from copper to iron, has been made easier. However, the process is still strenuous because of the stages it must pass to make a fine-looking piece.
steel fabrication-welding

The traditional method often includes bending; straightening; spinning; shearing; sawing; drilling; grinding and hot forging. The scenario is just the same when using a machine. Yet, out of this complex and sometimes time-consuming process, steel fabrication had touched industries from automotive to office supplies.

Steel or metal fabrication's reign may end because of a 30-year old contender. It is none other than additive manufacturing or also known as 3D printing technology. How so? All you have to do is connect your laptop to a 3d printer, open the blueprint and click the “print” icon. It doesn't involve feeding a paper; instead it uses specialized inks just to mold a creation layer by layer. You don't have to apply muscle work on it because you just have to sit, watch and patiently wait while the printer does its magic.

It was the year of 1984 this technology was introduced by Charles Hull using the program he made called stereolithography. Since then, many have attempted to replicate and enhance the 3D-making process such as Digital Light Processing (DLP), Laser Sintering, Inkjet, Selective Deposition Lamination (SDL) and Electronic Beam Melting (EBM). What are the clues that 3D printing may oust steel fabrication from its rightful place? It is when:
  • General Motors (GM) and Ford Motor Company make use of it to create automotive parts. GM's Chevrolet Malibu rapid prototyping of interior and exterior parts. While Ford Motor have been actively utilizing 3D printing for more than 10 years.
  • The US Navy installed a 3D printer on USS Essex last April of this year to be able to print on board while sailing on the seas.
  • The aviation joint of General Electric is tapping its potential to print new CFM LEAP engines in the future.
  • NASA took a great leap of faith by launching the first 3D printer on outer space, aptly named Zero-G Printer invented by Made In Space, on September 21, 2014. This is to eliminate the life threatening and expensive transfer of supplies by space shuttle.
So far, 3D printed objects or parts are now and will be existent on land, water, air, and space. The cause of this shift is due to its cost-effectiveness and the ability to mass produce in the future. If we're lucky to live in the year where a 3D printer will soon be another set of home appliance, someday you’ll have to plug in the device and tinker with your imagination.

This article was brought to you by: TKL Hardware & Construction Supply

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Tips on Cleaning your Stainless Steel Products at Home (Stainless Steel Sink)

Stainless steel has been a common part or item inside our house. From kitchen sinks, appliances, cook wares and even kitchen utensils. While stainless steels are good to look at, it cannot live up to its name if used for a long period of time. Through time, it can accumulate some unnecessary dirt like soap suds and many more.  That’s why it is necessary to clean stainless steel products at home regularly.

Cleaning a Stainless Steel Sink

In cleaning a stainless steel sink, we will need the following:
  •  Lemon Juice
  •  Baking Soda
  • Vinegar
  • Cleaning cloth
  • Drying cloth
  • Polishing cloth
  • water

Step 1

photo by: eclectifiedliving.blogspot.com
Add some small parts of baking soda to the sink that will be cleaned.  Spread it all over the sink.

Step 2

photo by:www.domesticserenity.org
Spray parts of lemon juice to the area with baking soda. In this step, you will be hearing a whizzing sound brought by the chemical reaction of the baking soda and the lemon juice.

Step 3
Wipe the sink with the cleaning cloth. Wipe it thoroughly until the soap suds are gone.

Step 4

After cleaning it with the cloth, rinse it with water and dry it with a dry cloth.

Step 5

If it’s all dried up, put small parts of vinegar into your drying cloth and apply it to the metal. This step will surely remove the dirt and the sink will return to its natural shine.

Step 6

Lastly, get another cloth and put small parts of baby oil into it. Wipe it on the sink’s surface evenly.

I hope that through this cleaning tip, you will save money from buying expensive cleaners that gives you false hopes of getting your sink clean like its new. Thanks for reading this article! Tune up for more cleaning tips!

This article was brought to you by: tkl.com.ph - one of the top steel fabrication companies in the Philippines.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

5 Tips in Taking Care of Your Roof

The roof is an essential part of the house. It protects you from different elements day and night. It protects you from the sun, its UV rays, rain, and strong winds. That’s why it’s important to keep your roof in optimal performance. Here are some steps to take care of your roof:

1. Know the condition of your roof

Check if it has leaks or damages or if it needs to be replaced. If it happens that your roof has leaks, schedule a fix on a sunny morning or late in the afternoon where the sun is bearable. Also, use a quick drying sealant.

2. Check the Gutter for Debris

Don’t let your gutter get clogged with leaves. With leaves accumulating on the gutter, the water will have no way out but to overflow. Also, be reminded to check the weather condition before cleaning the gutter. Make sure to work during on dry weather because leaves that are soaked in water are more difficult to remove.

3. Maintain an Ideal Roof Slope

According to an article of PDI, a 15 to 30 degree roof slope is the most appropriate for the Philippine’s tropical climate. Having a roof slope steeper than 30 degrees is great but having a roof slope lower than 15 degrees is bad because the lower the slope the more vulnerable it is to the suction of wind when a storm occurs.

4. Check your GI roof Regularly

Galvanized Iron sheets are prone to rust and wear and tear caused by the weather. If your house is under a tree which bears fruits, keep in mind that fruits falling onto the roof might cause warping which can lead to leaks when rainy days occur.

5. Hire a Contractor

Hire a contractor if you have concrete or tiled roofing. Just be sure to find a water proofing contractor who has a great track record and offers maintenance of at least 5 years.

Hope these tips helped you! Thank you for reading my post. This article was brought to you by: TKL Hardware

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Cost Beyond Building (How to Save on your New House)

I have a friend who recently bought a house. Well, not a house; the house isn’t there yet. He bought a pre-sold house and lot that costs way less than when you buy a house that’s already built and is fully furnished. Says that the house will be turned over by the developer in around 1 to 2 years time and that said house will only be handed over with a dirty cement finish. This got me thinking “wait, doesn’t that play against your favor?”

It doesn’t. Actually, if anyone is looking for less cost housing, dirty finish turn overs might be for the best. Here’re a couple of reasons why:

Construction Materials

You can get as much as 40% off from your supplier of construction materials here in the Philippines as opposed to paying the regular price for said supplies. This works wonders most especially when, like in the case of my uncle, his very good lifelong friend provided him with free cement all throughout—don’t underestimate how camaraderie and good fellowship will play a part in your future.

Single Planning and Execution

With a dirty finished home, you have all the allowance to play your interior layout, materials, and composition. The deal with a fully furnished home is that, although you can theoretically just live in it, it does not give you autonomy on how you want your house to look or what materials you would want to be used on it—both of which, if decided on by the developer, will cost you additional because of..

Development Charges

I helped my friend consult with an architect and, to the architect’s estimate, the cost of a 30 day interior renovation job for said dirty finished house may cost aroun 100k for the best materials but will include labor and the best materials they could find with construction only lasting for around 20-30 days. If furnishing will be done by the developer, an estimate additional setback of 250,000php might be in order.

So if you hear “dirty finish” on the pre-sold house you plan to buy, don’t think of is as money that you might not maximize but instead think of it as an opportunity to save on construction as well as give your new house a personal flair.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

4 Healthy Cookware Choices

Used to be, I had the idea that, with the dawn of Teflon and other non-stick cookware (and their catchy infomercials) gave steel manufacturers in the Philippines a run for their money. In my mind, gone were the days that you had to buy new cookware because there would be immortal pots and pans that your food (or plastic) won’t stick to. But the dawn of science killed the industry with explanations on PFOAs and PFCs, the materials they used to make that non-stick surface. To date, the best non stick cookware are actually the one we used to have.

Surgical Stainless Steal

surgical stainless steel
source: bedbathandbeyond.com

The problem with this material is that it is really, really expensive. But it does not come at a cost for nothing. See, this is the same material that they use for bone replacement and other medical applications thus the affixed “surgical” in its name. Since “stickiness” is the process of making proteins become a complex with heated metal, and since surgical stainless steel does not become a complex with proteins, it wakes for great cookware.

Cast Iron

steel manufacturer philippines-Cast Iron
source: doycetesterman.com

This pan is no joke. By effects and physical attributes, cast iron pans make for great non-stick applications but only after a couple of uses. This is because of the patina effect where oils stick to the crevices of the pan and give it a glossy look as well as help it to repel proteins. See, without oil, hot pans will fill the crevices with the protein that is available on the next thing that touches it. Oiling the pan prevents this from happening. Aside from being non-stick, it is also (due to its thickness) retains heat well so you keep on cooking even after the pan has been taken away from the stove.


steel manufacturer in the philippines-ceramic
source: ceramcor.com
This is a lot like cast iron cookware but conducts heat faster. They are very non-stick to some extent unless used in the wrong way. The best part about ceramic cookware is that it is very easy to clean.

Different pots and pans cook differently but they generally are damaged by too high level heat cooking so as a general rule, try to not overcook the pan.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The Most Useful Steel Fabrication Technique: Welding

One of the most important steel fabrication technique is welding.  It is process where two steel objects are joined together by means of melting the parts with the use of a welding rod while the welded sheet metal is grounded. Welding is a skill that can be useful to everybody as it serves as a hobby for some and also a living for many. But whatever your purpose to learn welding is, it is still advisable to learn from a vocational school that is certified to teach the skill.

If you’re serious into welding, then this is what you’ll need:

1.       Safety Equipments

Before starting to weld you should have these safety equipments first:
·         Eyes: Auto-darkening helmet, safety glasses
·         Lungs: Particle Mask
·         Skin: Leather Cape, Welding gloves

2.       Tools

Square Ruler – Technically used in drafting but it can also be used in welding. The important thing is it can used to check if your welded materials are in 90 degrees.  

Welding Machine- A machine that produces electric current to do arc welding process.

Welding Rod- Used as a filler for the melted metal. They are sold according to their use or depend on the thickness of the metal to be joined. They are classified according to their code number. For beginners, 1/8 inch 6011 is the most commonly used rod.

Clean Sheet of Metal- Ensure that the steel sheet is clean so that melting it would be easier.

If you are really enthusiastic in learning welding, follow this blog for more updates.