4 Reasons Why People are Switching to Cold Drawn Steel
Have you ever wondered why people are making the switch to cold drawn steel? There are a number of reasons why this metal finishing process has become increasingly popular. Basically, there’s a reason why so many companies prefer it over the other forms of steel, hot rolled and cold rolled. The cold drawn steel process has a large number of advantages that make it better. We’ll go into some of them here.
What Is Cold Drawn Steel?
Before we can explain why people are making the switch to cold drawn steel, we first need to explain exactly what it is. This form of steel is created in a very specific way. Once the steel is created (remember that steel is an alloy, so it’s a mix of iron and other metals), it is allowed to cool to room temperature before it’s sent through a series of dies.
In some cases, the metal is coated with a special lubricant first, in order to make it easier for it to be sent through those dies. These dies draw out the metal, which is where the name of this process comes from. Each die is thinner than the previous one, and the number of them that the metal goes through depends on the desired final result.
For example, if you were making wire, then the metal would be pulled through quite a few dies, making it thinner and thinner. A metal pipe, on the other hand, won’t be quite so thin. It will go through fewer dies.
Now that you understand exactly how cold drawn steel is made, it’s time to go into why people prefer it over the other types of steel.
1) It’s More Precise
To begin with, you can create more precise shapes from cold drawn steel. With hot rolled steel (which, as you can imagine, is shaped while it’s still hot before it’s allowed to cool in that form) the shape can change somewhat. The cooling process can do things like dull corners and edges. This is problematic for industries that need their finished steel shapes to be incredibly precise.
However, with cold rolled steel, this isn’t the case at all. Since the metal is already cooled before it’s shaped, all of those precise edges stay just as they are designed to. The end result is exactly what the manufacturer’s buyers want. This gives cold drawn an edge (pun intended) over the other varieties.
2) It Looks Nicer
On top of the precision involved with creating products from cold rolled steel, the end result also looks nicer. Although the surface finish isn’t as big a concern with some products than with others, when a company wants something that looks appealing to buyers, they will go for one made of cold drawn steel over one of the others. Why does this finish look nicer? Well, it comes down to how the steel is finished.
The process of drawing it through various dies makes that finished product nice and shiny. It isn’t dull at all. Even if the product will be placed inside of walls or other places (which is the case for things like wire, pipes, and brackets), people are still drawn to shiny metal pieces on shelves. They’ll choose those over the ones with a dull finish. It all comes down to marketability.
3) It’s Much Stronger
Next, cold drawn steel is a lot stronger than the other varieties. If you compare it directly to hot rolled steel, the tensile strength (how much give it has) and the yield strength (how much it can handle overall) is much higher, even if the hot rolled steel is made from the same exact ratio of metal alloys as the cold drawn steel.
This is due to the fact that the steel is allowed to cool down and harden before it is shaped. The end results can withstand a lot more forces. Since hot rolled steel is shaped while hot and allowed to cool, it ends up being weaker. This is one of the most important reasons why people prefer cold drawn steel over the alternatives.
4) Quite A Few Products can be made From It
Finally, the versatility of cold drawn steel is quite possibly the most important reason why people are switching to it. You can make quite a few different products from cold drawn steel. We mentioned some of them here, such as wire, piping, and brackets.
However, you can also make metal bars and even paperclips out of this material. It all comes down to how many dies the metal is drawn through and the final, ideal shape of it. In the end, this is what matters. The ability to make plenty of things from this material is what really makes it stand out.