How to work with structural steel: The Builders’ Guide
Look around you and you will realize the importance of structural steel in the modern-day construction landscape.
Structural steel is one of the most critical components of urban construction. It has several benefits along with stability and durability.
If you’re a builder who is looking forward to working with structural steel, here is the ultimate guide for you. But before that let’s understand what is structural steel and how it works.
What is a structural steel?
Whether you want to make bridges or large buildings, structural steel is often the main backbone for these constructions. But have you ever thought how structural steels are made? While raw iron is the chief component of structural steel, but usually it has high carbon content in it which needs to be removed to achieve the desired properties and specification for the structural steel. After the raw iron is crushed, it undergoes different refining processes to extract the best grade of the iron. It is heated and infused with other components like manganese to derive the final version of the structural steel.
Tools and equipment required for metal fabrication
After the shape is derived for the structural steel, it undergoes a series of fabrication and welding processes. Welded and fabricated structural steels are lighter in weight, cost-effective, and are easier to work with. A bunch of tools is used to fabricate structural steels. These include oxy-gas torches which are ideal for small scale fabrication processes.
Fabricators also work with other tools like cold saw for cutting, shot blaster for cleaning and polishing, plate processor for shape cutting and part making, magnetic drill for drilling heavy objects, etc.
Benefits of working with steel in residential construction?
If you are hesitant about using steel for your next residential construction, but in a dilemma to make up your mind, here are some benefits of working with steel that you need to know to make an informed decision. Some of these include:
- You get enough freedom to show your creativity when you work with structural steel. It gives you a wide range of variety to choose color, texture, shape, etc. Apart from style and design flexibility, steel is durable and gives strength to the residential structure. Steel can be factory-finished so that you can expect to have the final product as per your specification. This means that there is a minimal risk on on-site variability which also reduces the cost of wastage.
- Steel lets you have fewer columns and more open spaces. So, it offers an affordable solution for spanning long distances. If you are constructing single-story buildings you can use rolled beams that can provide a span of 50 meters. Steel structures also increase the lifetime of the buildings because they can be altered and adapted easily.
- Steels are earthquake resistant. So, if you are making your construction in an earthquake-prone area, it makes a lot of sense to use structural steels. Steels are ductile, flexible, and are resistant to earthquakes. Additionally, the beam – to- column connections help to support the gravity loads in steel buildings although they are capable to resist the lateral loads which are caused during an earthquake.
- Steel buildings are made with advanced techniques and designs that have undergone extensive testing. Hence, it can be safely said that buildings made of steel frames offer better fire protection.
- Since steel structures are lighter than concrete structures, it does not require extensive foundations. This reduces the environmental impact significantly. Additionally, they are easy to move from one place to another due to their lightweight which means less fuel is exhausted in transportation. Apart from saving the environment you also save on costs.
If you are looking to work with structural steel for your next construction project, you need to ensure that you choose the right component to work with. While there are many players in the market, you can safely rely on the Mirage Industrial Group. We have been working with structural steel erection & fabrication for years now and hence we have found some of the best craftsmen, machine operators, ironworkers, and supervisors. We emphasize job training and safety for each of our employees so that they could focus on crafting the best quality of steel.