A stainless steel tube is basically a closed shaped structure which is used in numerous structural functions. The shape of a stainless steel tube can be round, square or rectangular or as per the requirement of manufacturing a particular application. A 1 inch of round tube has 1 inch outside diameter whereas, a 1 inch round pipe has 1 inch inside diameter. The reason behind this is that the external parts of the tubes are important in building structures and the internal parts of the pipes are important in the flow of fluid.
There are mainly two primary types of steel tubing: seamless and welded. The latter begins as a flat strip whereas, the former starts in a melting furnace.
1. Seamless: Primarily the manufacture process of a seamless tubing starts from an electric arc furnace. The steel is later cast in an ingot or cast repeatedly as a bloom. The latter is then rolled in a billet which later on becomes a tube by being drawn over a piercing tool with the help of two external rollers. These rollers are set at an angle to each other which help to move the billet. This is the point when a "rough" tube is formed. Then it is put in an elongator, inside which, with the help of three rollers and an internal mandrel the tube is given a final outside diameter and wall thickness.
2. Welded: This type of steel tubing is made out of either hot-rolled or cold-rolled steel which is poured in the tubing manufacturer in coils. If required the coil may be processed to remove unwanted scale and improve finish. Then the coil is passed through grooved rollers till the shape is formed and the free edges are properly shaped for welding. The external and sometimes the internal welding residue are removed after the edges of the tube are butt welded together. After all this procedure the tube is made to go through two semicircular rollers that help to bring the tube to its final required dimension.
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