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Question:

What is mild steel and what items are made from it?

I am about to do a welding project and we are instructed to only use mild steel. I want to use found objects like coins, spoons, bottle caps, screws, and other small fasteners. Are these mild steel? What other objects can I use that are mild steel?

Answer:

not really. Coins aren't usually made from steel (e.g. an US cent is mainly zinc which will melt with releasing toxic fumes while welding), spoons are usually stainless steel (which is not mild steel), bottle caps can be steel but also aluminum. Fasteners can be made from a wide variety of metals. Generally mild steel is steel with a relatively low content of carbon (2%) which makes it easier to weld. It's used a lot for structure in building (e.g. rebar). Mild steel is also cheaper than other kinds of steel. Tools are usually made from high carbon steel. Generally I'd recommend to go to the scrap yard and pick up some shapes and pieces you like if you don't mind having to clean the rust off. Most will be mild steel. Welding small and thin pieces is much more challenging than welding larger pieces of metal. You are more likely to melt a bottle cap than weld it. Also your steel needs to be clean (no paint, sandblast or brush rust off). I would highly recommend to talk your project over with your teacher before you get all frustrated.
Sep 27, 2017
Mild steel is what your friends get when they see your mom's cleavage.
Sep 27, 2017

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