Instead of millimeters or inches, ‘gauge’ is the term used for the measurement of stainless steel. When you want to know the thickness of your metal, a stainless steel gauge is a perfect guide for you.
When it comes to a steel gauge chart, the numbers fall between 3 and 30. However, these numbers cannot tell a specific dimensional value. Rather, the development of standard gauge sizes is based on the weight of the sheet while the thickness is based on the gauge size of each material.
In this article, you’ll be learning about stainless steel gauges and other important related information you should know before buying a stainless steel gas grill.
“The best grills are made of 304 stainless steel”
What Is Stainless Steel?
Stainless steel is a term that describes a group of alloys based on iron containing a minimum chromium level of 10.5%. An alloy can be described as a metal that is obtained from the combination of two or more metals.
Combining chromium and steel makes the steel resistant to corrosion. This is achieved when chromium forms what is known as a passive layer. A passive layer is an ultra-thin layer that forms on steel and acts as a protection or covering. It’s this covering that prevents rust or any other form of corrosion from occurring.
Furthermore, an alloy can only be considered stainless if the carbon content is not more than 1.2%. Additionally, the alloy can contain other elements like nitrogen, silicon, titanium, niobium, nickel, molybdenum, and manganese, all in varying amounts.
When metals and other elements combine, they form stainless steel. The different properties of stainless steel are a result of combining these materials differently.
Stainless Steel Or Powder Coated Steel?
This is my personal opinion. I prefer powder-coated steel over stainless steel for the reason that the steel is thicker and will retain the heat better.
When coated with quality paint it will also not rust. Stainless steel does not mean rust-free and it will rust eventually.
You can read more about it in this article about steel gauges for grills.
However, for propane burners, there is nothing better than stainless steel.
Gauges of Stainless Steel
A gauge refers to measuring value for thickness, so gauges of stainless steel mean the thickness of stainless steel. People often tend to think that when the number of a gauge is high, it means that the steel is thicker.
However, this is not measured using traditional scales so it is different.
When using steel for any purpose, you must choose the proper gauge. For example, a stainless steel gauge may be the perfect weight for a washing hand sink while a different stainless steel gauge will be required for heavier applications such as larger sinks and grills.
Stainless Steel Gauges For Grills
- 304 grade. Used in higher-priced grills.
- 430 grade. Mostly used for doors and panels
How to Use a Stainless Steel Gauge Chart
On a stainless steel gauge chart, you will find the gauge number and the corresponding thickness of the stainless steel in inches. The gauge chart can be used to confirm the thickness of the metal for the process of machining or selection of materials.
The stainless steel gauges are not metric or standard. The numbers also do not depend on the measured value.
Is 304 Or 316 Stainless Steel Better For A Grill?
Although 304 stainless steel has a higher melting point compared to 316 the 316 grade is better for appliances where salt and other chemicals are used. So, they are more common in places such as chees production.
For grills, the 304 is a good choice.
My Conclusion And Opinion
A gauge refers to a measured value for thickness and gauges of stainless steel mean the thickness of stainless steel.
A stainless steel gauge measures in the range of 3 – 38 with corresponding thickness. Unlike traditional scales, the higher the gauge number, the lighter the stainless steel, and vice versa.
It is also important to choose the appropriate weight and thickness when using stainless steel for grill grates and any form of application.
Eddie van Aken
Eddie van Aken has years of experience in running his full-service restaurant and with this came working with using and dealing with all types of kitchen equipment. With his experience, he is able to find all the pros and cons of grills and add them to the grill reviews he is doing. You can read more on the about page for Eddie van Aken