How Do We Handle Metal That Doesn't Meet Our Quality Standards?

Posted by: Dani Weinhandl on January 11, 2022

The quality of your materials often makes or breaks a project. You can’t afford to risk investing time and money in a steel and metal service center that sources from low-quality providers or skimps on quality control measures.

At Mead Metals, quality control and customer satisfaction are our driving purpose. We always prioritize trust and transparency when communicating with clients about our sourcing practices. So here’s an inside look at how we identify, correct, and handle “reject” materials before they have a chance to leave our warehouse.

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A Guide to Copper Alloys: Brass vs. Phosphor Bronze

Posted by: Dani Weinhandl on January 5, 2022

Copper has been valued by mankind for over 10,000 years. Its unique properties, malleability, ductility, and pleasing aesthetic appearance make it a top candidate for a wide variety of purposes. It also makes friends easily by forming to any number of useful alloys and binary compounds. 

Brass and phosphor bronze are two copper alloys that retain many of copper's valuable qualities while holding unique characteristics of their own. Collectively, copper, brass, and bronze are called the “Red Metals.” You may think of these three when picturing old candelabras, light fixtures, and statues. But due to their similarities, many people may find it difficult to tell these metals apart.

So what’s the difference between copper, brass, and phosphor bronze? The infographic below and the accompanying article will answer all the questions you have about the differences between these metals, what they are used for, and how to identify them.

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Why The Lowest Material Price Isn't Always Better

Posted by: Brian Rothstein on November 30, 2021

Let’s say you want to buy a car. You have the option of buying a high mileage vehicle for $5,000, or you could buy a slightly newer, lower mileage vehicle for $9,000. 

Obviously, you have to fork up an extra four thousand dollars for the nicer vehicle, but you have to weigh your options when it comes to what’s most important to you: a more reliable vehicle, or a lower overall price that may break the bank when you have car issues in a few months. 

It’s a similar idea when comparing metal prices. Depending on the crucial quality requirements of your project, sourcing materials like steel, copper, or bronze at the lowest cost could drive up your overall cost later. 

Finding the lowest material price and finding the lowest material price that meets your specific needs are two very different things. 

So, this drives us to an important question.

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What Metals Are Magnetic?

Posted by: Dani Weinhandl on November 29, 2021

There are three elemental metals that are magnetic: 

  • Iron
  • Cobalt 
  • Nickel 

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Why is Copper the Best Choice for Electrical Connectors?

Posted by: Dani Weinhandl on November 23, 2021

For nearly 200 years, copper has been the material of choice for electrical connectors. Since the invention of the electromagnet and the telegraph in the early 1800s, it’s become even more widespread, especially with the invention of the telephone in 1876.

Today, copper electrical connectors are still used in telecommunications, power generation, distribution, and transmission.

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What is the Difference: Tempering vs. Annealing?

Posted by: Dani Weinhandl on November 16, 2021

Tempering and annealing are both methods of heat treating metal. The purpose of heat treating is to intentionally alter the physical (and chemical) properties of metal to get it ready for manufacturing. Heat treatments can affect many properties of a metal product, including strength, hardness, formability, ductility, malleability, and machinability.

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The Quality vs Price tradeoff in Metal Products [Infographic]

Posted by: Brian Rothstein on November 11, 2021

We've all heard the phrase, "you get what you pay for," and metal purchasing is no exception. To help you understand how the price of metal products is oftentimes related to quality, take a glance at the following handy infographic.

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What are the Different Grades of Steel?

Posted by: Mark Anderson on November 3, 2021

Most people think that steel is just a pre-set combination of iron and carbon, but did you know there are more than 3,500 different grades of steel? You can find a  steel’s grade by measuring the amount of carbon, the other alloys it contains, and the way the manufacturer processes it.

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What is an Alloy?

Posted by: Dani Weinhandl on October 27, 2021

A metal alloy is a substance that combines more than one metal or mixes a metal with other non-metallic elements.

For example, brass is an alloy of two metals: copper and zinc. Steel is an alloy of a metallic element (iron) and a small amount — up to 2% — of a non-metallic element (carbon).

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What Value-Add Services Does A Metal Service Center Provide?

Posted by: Brian Rothstein on October 21, 2021

If you think you can go to two different metal service centers and get the same value-add services, you’d be mistaken. Depending on the equipment, capabilities, and general know-how of the center you work with, these locations could offer entirely different services than other metal service centers nearby.

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