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IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please
3

IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

(OP)
Hello,

I have an SGS laboratory analysis report(image attached) of some Iron Pipes (see photo), for which I am trying to determine the type of iron. The SGS laboratory analysis does not indicate the Carbon percent... Is this possible, or must this be an error by SGS?

Could someone help determine what type of Iron (Cast, Iron, Ductile Iron, or other) does the chemical composition shown in the SGS report attached represent:


Thanks in advance for your kind help with this.
Antonio

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

You can't measure C with xray, they need to do OES or combustion analysis to get you a C.
And in plain steels that is really what matters most.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
P.E. Metallurgy, consulting work welcomed

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

They did a PMI test, which is another name for X-ray fluorescence. XRF is NOT chemical analysis.

Reporting all those numbers is at least ignorant and at most dishonest.

Then they did NOT report the ONE thing PMI can actually tell you: the alloy ID. (Although with carbon steel or iron that will not narrow it down at all.)

They probably charged you almost as much as for actual chemical analysis. Sadly this is the norm for inspection companies, who have overhyped XRF to the point that their clients believe it is equivalent to chemical analysis.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

(OP)
Thanks very much for the fast response.
Can you recommend best and least expensive way to determine what type of iron (Cast, Iron, Ductile Iron, or other) these iron pipes are?
This may not help, but here are a couple of pictures:



Thanks again!

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

That is a serious mountain of pipes! Did somebody abandon a cross country project after procuring all this?

Every piece lacking traceability must be fully tested to certify conformance to whatever code you want to use it for (API?). This means tensile testing and exact composition at a minimum. Do it at a qualified laboratory, and for your own protection have a recognized 3rd party entity witness the sampling and testing (however it works in your jurisdiction AND the destination jurisdiction). Do you know the mill(s) it came from?

What you can do yourself immediately is look for any longitudinal weld seams. The colour of the material after grinding will tell you if it is steel or cast iron (gray or ductile), but CI is not very likely. Weld seams will of course rule out CI.

Good luck!

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Have samples tested by Optical Emission Spectrometer.
All that you really need are C, Mn, Cr, Si.
That will let you nail down a composition.
You would need other tests (microstructure and tensile) in order to figure out how it was made.

Is this scrap that will be melted?
Of will this be cut up and used for other things?

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
P.E. Metallurgy, consulting work welcomed

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

(OP)
thanks again for all the replies.
This is scrap that will be melted and reused.
I will digest the information received and come back with more answers and probably questions.
Thanks!

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

If you have to check all this material in order to be melted PMI is the choice. If want to have a precise chemical composition, you have to look for others methods as mentioned above

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

isoca speaks truth.

Sorting scrap is a major sector for PMI intruments.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Quote (AntonioCP)

Could someone help determine what type of Iron (Cast, Iron, Ductile Iron, or other)

Composition is not the way to determine this. Instead, you need to look at the microstructure of the pipe and determine the graphite form. You can replicate the surfaces to look at structure if you do not want to send samples for metallographic cross-sectioning. You can do most of the characterization using the as-polished structure, though you will have to etch if you need to know whether the matrix contains pearlite. In particular, looking at the graphite flake morphology (flakes versus globules for gray vs. ductile) should be a huge help in characterization.

Beyond this, note most cast irons are not characterized by composition or only have token limits. However, many are characterized by tensile properties (especially ductile) and have tensile requirements for specific grades.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

(OP)
I continue to be very grateful for all the information received in this forum. We are looking for ways to resolve our questions based on the information you all have given. I will post results here when we get to that point.
Thanks.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

mrf,

No metallography required.
As I said, cast iron can be differentiated from steel visually by just grinding to clean metal. Actually the spark pattern is another good way to differentiate basic alloy groups if colour doesn't do it.
Carbon steel can be differentiated from low alloy and stainless steel with just PMI.
A little residual alloy content may or may not be objectionable.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Do an online search
spark testing steel chart

You will find lots of useful guides on figuring out roughly what C level you are dealing with.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
P.E. Metallurgy, consulting work welcomed

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

You also needs to know how to use an angle grinder and read the spark pattern and color. From the photos this looks like seamless tubing standard weight plain end bevel which would already be low carbon steel. SAE grade 1020 is typical with your stated Mn analysis. Carbon on SAE 1020 ranges 0.18 to 0.23.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Steel Gal,
Appreciate your sharp eyes. TThe rim of those pipes shown indicate they are carbon steel. There could be others that are spun cast.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Thank you for your kind words. It helps if you actually made the product as I did years ago in the Pittsburgh, PA area. I was a turn foreman for a now defunct steel company shipping this type of product by flatbed truck, rail, and barge on the Ohio River.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Hello,

you could give a try to Spectrum analysis and also if you are available to reach university labs. SEM or EDS even XRD could help.
Also you can try to collect mechanical tests results for comparison.


br.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I envy the eyesight of anyone capable of determining from these photos that all the pipes are seamless and also that they are steel. I thought that kind of photograph interpretation was only possible on the X-files.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I live on a different street:
OES Optical Emission Spectroscopy
XRF X-ray Fluorescence Spectroscopy
PMI Positive Material Identification
SEM Scanning Electron Microscopy
EDS Energy-Dispersive X-ray Spectroscopy, also EDX or XEDS
XRD X-Ray Diffraction analysis

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

You've just filled your Acronym Bingo card.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I was merely trying to give some guidance to minimize "chasing this cow around the pasture". I said it is probably not some exotic grade of steel, but simply AISI or SAE 1020 which he can look up. This picture could be ERW vs seamless but for the purpose of the question the grade of steel answers the question, not whether it is ERW or seamless. I still have my old catalogs and ASME Handbooks for reference. BTW I have done spark testing.

Sometimes one thinks too much. Just work in a steel mill like I did.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

BINGO... thanks there were 3 of the acronyms, I wasn't familiar with.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Fun fact: I was once diagnosed with a severe case of AOS.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

What does the American Orchid Society have to do with it? ponder

I'm not big on metals and metallurgy... just in passing and am unaware of a lot of the acronyms for the materials and testing... but, I like to find out.

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Deciding it is probably welded based just on the diameter (large) makes the most sense.
But a weld seam would only establish that it is steel and not cast iron. That's probably sufficient.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

For clarity I'll add to dik's post;
OES is the only quantitative method listed that will measure C.
XRF comes in many flavors from handheld instruments meant only for PMI (general alloy identification, not real chemistries) to lab units.
Even the the large vacuum path lab instruments will only measure down to Na.
There are methods used in XRF, EDX, and XRD that will report lighter elements, but these are inferred and model based, not standards based.
They do not count as a true analysis.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
P.E. Metallurgy, consulting work welcomed

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Thanks, Ed...

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Does any metallurgist here work outside of a lab with ferrous material and get paid? No wonder the country is so dependent on foreign steel. I may be a dinosaur, but....

For all of you here the classic textbook in ferrous metallurgy is "The Making, Shaping, and Treating of Steel" by Carnegie later US Steel Corporation, Pittsburgh, PA. It can be downloaded online and explains the very basic process of making both iron and steel. While continuous casters and mini mills have replaced the BOFs (that is basic oxygen furnace) and rolling mills, from a materials standpoint the process remains about the same.

As for the acronyms posted above-

AISI - the American Iron & Steel Institute, an organization still alive today whose members were all the steel manufacturers in the United States. Their initial purpose was to establish a common standards and applications for all steel products.

SAE - Society of Automotive Engineers, self explanatory

ERW - Electro Resistance Welded, term typically used for tubular products where the steel is preheated prior and shaped while red hot by fusing the sides together.

ASME - American Sociery of Mechanical Engineers, produced their own reference book titled "Metal Properties" to satisfy the need to compile in one place the data on metallurgical, physical, fabrication, and mechanical properties of typical metals whether it is wrought iron, cast iron, cast steel, wrought steel, ASTM/AISI grade steel, wrought and cast copper alloy, wrought and cast aluminum alloy, nickel alloy, zinc alloy, lead alloy, tin alloy, magnesium alloy, and special alloy like titanium or vanadium.

Each heat of steel before it was melted had a predetermined destination as to the type of product - rod, tin plate, tubular, flat plate, etc. If the heat did not meet specs, then the heat would be diverted and scheduled to another product line before being poured.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Quote (Steel Gal)

Does any metallurgist here work outside of a lab with ferrous material and get paid? No wonder the country is so dependent on foreign steel.

Don't think loss of engineering expertise is the cause of domestic whatever. Look up the acronyms WTO and FTA (for starters). They have the most to do with the rise in foreign ownership of domestic industries.

Way back when I was a grad student I purchased an ASM reprint of a book by E.C. Bain that I can highly recommend to anyone interested in steel hardenability concepts.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I have a raging AOS headache right now.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I experienced first hand the closure of the steel mills in the 1980s. It wasn't right, the fifty men I supervised worked for me very well for the most part. I was in my early 20s then and a few groused about me taking a job away from a man. But, when they found out big sister was financially taking care of a widowed mother and two baby siblings things mellowed out.

The rank and file had little to do directly with the USWA contract since it was one contract for all steel manufactures, not different contracts between USWA and each steel company. The big boys (Thomas Graham and his crew) at US Steel Corporation and the head of the USWA sold a lot of people down river. My men were willing to make concessions to save jobs and were ignored at the local union level.

I never ever want to experience such an economic situation again. But I totally agree, the WTO and these FTA agreements have trashed our basic manufacturing capacity. I haven't lived in the greater Pittsburgh area for years because of the work situation.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Quote (Steel Gal)

The big boys (Thomas Graham and his crew) at US Steel Corporation and the head of the USWA sold a lot of people down river. My men were willing to make concessions to save jobs and were ignored at the local union level.

The rank and file instinctively knew something was rotten. All kinds of unions in the US and Canada made concessions for no end result. The bad religion of Globalization and Neoliberalism has its origin in a pseudo-scientist named Hayek.

FTAs are only peripherally about 'free trade', they are about corporations going where they want, to operate how they want. Wherever labour and environmental standards and regulation and taxation are minimum.
Cf. 'race to the bottom'.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Amen, brother. No wonder my resume looks like a trip around the world.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I don't know how or where the scrapped pipe will be remelted but I would assume by electric melt in which case the carbon content is somewhat immaterial. I would assume the remelter would like to know the Mn, Si, S and elements that will not be reduced during remelting like Cu and Ni. It's more than likely that the pipe is API 5L-X52 or foriegn derivitive thereof.

With an OES chemistry of residual elements, in the distant past, I could define which mill the steel was made in the USA in fully integrated mills.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

SGal, I can commiserate with you. I however was fortunate enough to avoid basic steel and stay in specialty alloys (not really through any great plan of my own). It hasn't been smooth but it has been domestic, and some of the jobs were great, right up until they ended.
I have been doing consulting work, and surviving. Right now working with a startup with no money, but very interesting. If it gets funding I am good.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
P.E. Metallurgy, consulting work welcomed

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Weldstan, you made a great point I forgot about regarding residual elements and identification by mill. For the curious, I worked at J & L Steel Aliquippa Works. Did my corporate operations trainee work in the Blast Furnaces, and the Round Mill. Supervised in the Welded Tube.

Before that, I was an hourly employee for Westinghouse Specialty Metals playing with zirconium and inconel alloys in two separate product lines.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

In terms of technical quality of metal products the world has regressed in the last couple of decades.
Now much of the world's scrap gets remelted in electric arc furnaces in the Far East (to protect the guilty and avoid personal e-assaults I will not name the country). This has created a new problem of excessive residual alloy content in steel products that is negatively affecting Oil & Gas, where property requirements are more exacting. More cost, more testing, more delays.
(Remember the moving company TV ad where the family sings "we're saving six hundred bucks!"?)

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Trying to by SS these days for nuclear applications with 0.05% max Co has become a nightmare.
And of course I care about Cu, Sn and about 6 other elements also.
Electric remelt is not my friend.

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =
P.E. Metallurgy, consulting work welcomed

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Then there's this

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I am starting a new job next week working with old fashioned power boilers and other railroad components that have and will be in public use. I am scared to death on what I find as sources of material for the repair and restoration of these beasts. Hope to get away from Chinese steel, same reasons as oil and gas. Suggestions for alternative sources of supply (especially domestic) is appreciated.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Contracts for US pressure equipment projects I have worked on have had 'may not buy from C***a' clauses.
While these may be politically motivated, it turns out they are great for quality!

This forced me to source my duplex stainless steel welding wire from Sandvik. Experience has taught me that the best way to save money in fabrication is to give the shop quality tools and premium filler metals, so it suited me fine. Welders not 'blaming the wire' is the happy place for a welding engineer!

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Good luck Steel Gal.
A tip: look out for decarburization in failed tubes, especially the exotic ferritics now being used in gas plants. Many other sins were committed during the manic combined cycle plant construction boom.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I agree. My late husband was a extremely competent fitter/welder and would talk about flux core wire quality a lot. We never used garbage wire in our shop; if a welding supply house failed to give me documentation when I requested it, I didn't do business with it again.

Years ago I had my own personal run in with ESAB flux core wire that I won't get into here. If only they were actually making what they said they were selling to you. I hate liars.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

You would be surprised at how many welding products from premium brands are made by others. And I'm not even talking about the relabeled, second-tier Far East junk.

A lot like gasoline - the stuff you just bought was more than likely refined at the geographically nearest refinery, not one indicated by the sign over the gas station.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

On this story I was not on the purchasing end, but a "whistleblower" concerning their product. Near my residence is one of their manufacturing facilities for making flux core welding wire. The employees went out on strike and the company hired scab labor as replacements. I was hired as part of that group, we needed the money.

So the company now has an unskilled labor force (including me) making flux core wire and shipping it to US Navy contracts, etc. I felt that the product could not possibly be any good - you don't learn to make welding wire in five minutes.

I won't say what I did, but I later learned that post strike the plant management and some of the staff were fired as a result.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

SGal,
Very interesting experience you have. MST handbook was the bible for us young metallurgists in 1970's. I come from the other side of the world, where Mittal started his steel journey. They were steel scrap traders in Calcutta.

I work in a steel foundry and getting quality steel scrap is becoming a challenge especially with Boron and Vanadium contents.

Good Luck in your new assignment.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please


Good grief , all these responses for some ERW line pipe . Photo shows steel ,likely X60 but anything from X-42 to maybe X-70 is possible . No cast iron. Likely a pinch of Nb ( Cb for old people).

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Don't assume, because you know what can happen when you assume...

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I do not assume ,I know that is ERW ( from what I can see). Ti an V are unusual so I assume it is Nb. I also assume it is not much over 40 years old. There are a dozen ways to verify it but i am old and type slow. Uniformity of wall thickness,- ERW is more uniform wall. ERW will have weld trim , not all but enough for ID. Metallography of some rings will show weld and (I assume the API required recrystallize), Real chemistry , For ID you only need the micro alloys ( Nb, v, Ti , and I assume no alloys have been added). Etc.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Quote (( Nb, v, Ti , and I assume no alloys have been added))


Are these just trace elements? Something just difficult to get rid of and part of re-cycled metal?

Rather than think climate change and the corona virus as science, think of it as the wrath of God. Feel any better?

-Dik

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

They are not residuals when purposely added and are considered micro-alloying elements. Wen I worked in a steel mill, we would add V (> .03%) and Nb (> 0.015%) to the steels to provide greater strength with less C. The skelp for our ERW pipe was exclusively C-Mn-Si killed and semikilled steels until I left in 1972. I know that by 1978, microalloying elements were added to both their ERW and sub-arc welded X60 and X65 pipe.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

I was not clear; by "alloys" ,I meant the traditional Cr,Ni,Mo for alloy steels. Yes, @weldstan, that is what I meant by " I assume not older than 40 years" because then they could have been traditional steels , and not TMCP - containing Nb, etc. Amoco had dozens of pipe ruptures of slit skelp semikilled ERW pipe. The manganese silicate/sulfide stringers just do not weld well. Sometime in that era , I added "no slit skelp permitted" to the Amoco pipe specs.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Agree that semikilled ERW pipe produced far too many inclusions reaching the surface and could readily lead to failure in service. When I worked for a major EPC firm, I too wrote specs prohibiting the purchase of semikilled pipe for any of our petrochem, power, metallurgical and nuclear fuels reprocessing projects.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

Eventually there will be a part per million of everything in everything.

I thought the problem with ERW was the low-frequency welding aspect, which (when combined with superficial NDE) left 'hook' defects at the joint. Either way, that stuff should have been killed (not semi-killed) in its cradle, considering the massive environmental damage caused by pipeline ruptures.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

The major problem with the old ERW was stringers in the weld (hook flaws). With cleaner TMCP the weld zone could have poor mechanical properties. API 5 added a requirement for recrystallizing the weld zone ( an induction coil after welding; metallographic verification is required). Manufacturers still wanted the option for cheap pipe so ( when I retired) Grade B only required reheating , not recrystallization. ERW can be very good pipe; Amoco was using a lot of 80 ksi ( and lower) casing.

RE: IRON PIPE Chemical Composition (no Carbon?) - Help determining type of Iron please

You're correct, ERW can be high quality, but as the saying goes, "there's many a slip twixt the cup and the lip". LF-ERW failures do not have a single causal factor.

High frequency welding has made LF-ERW obsolete. I have seen cross sections of normalized welds that exhibit zero evidence of the weld; the only clue might be a very small notch or ridge on the inner or outer surface.

If I am writing a tech spec for welded pipe I would place strong emphasis on thorough NDE of every inch of long seam.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but they are not entitled to their own facts."

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