Stainless Steel 304

304 / 304L Stainless Steel

Steel Grade 304 / 304L | UNS S30400 / UNS S30403 | 1.4301 / 1.4307

These types of steel are some of the most regularly specified and have come to represent the embodiment of the basic stainless product. They are part of the 300 Series of steels (as defined in SAE specifications) which covers a range of austenitic chromium-nickel alloys. They are also known as 18/8 stainless due to their chemical composition which includes approximately 18% chromium and 8% nickel by weight. The steels are easy to form, weld, and fabricate and their resistance to corrosion from, amongst other things, acids naturally contained in food has resulted in them being used widely in the food and drink processing industries.

Type 304 and Type 304L have very similar chemical and mechanical properties and are often included on a single material test certificate when the actual properties of a stainless steel plate meet the criteria of both types. This is a very common occurrence. Type 304L is a variation of Type 304 and has a lower carbon content which improves weldability and lowers the risk of reduced corrosion resistance around the weld. Type 304L also has a slightly lower yield and tensile strength than Type 304.

As with most steel plate products a number of different designations are used for these steels. The most common are:

  • Type 304              1.4301 (EN Steel Number)            S30400 (UNS) 
  • Type 304L            1.4307 (EN Steel Number)            S30403 (UNS)

304 / 304L Stainless Steel Properties:

Typical chemical and mechanical properties of Type 304 and Type 304L stainless steel:

   Chemical Analysis (%)   PREN  Mechanical Properties  
   C  Cr Ni Mo
Proof Stress Tensile Elongation 
 304 .08 18.5 9  -  19 235 530-730 40 
 304L .03 18.5 9  -  19 200 500-700 40

Typical industrial sectors:

  • Food Processing
  • Chemical Industry
  • Brewing
  • Pharmaceuticals
  • Petrochemicals

Typical product applications:

  • Heat Exchangers
  • Pipelines
  • Pressure Vessels
  • Flanges and fittings
  • Valves
  • Condensers.

Contact Brown McFarlane’s specialist stainless steel team for all sales and technical enquiries.

Type 304 and Type 304L Stainless Steel

Brown McFarlane holds a comprehensive stock of plate in large format (up to 12,000 mm long and 3,000 mm wide) which is designed to minimise fabrication costs for our customers by reducing the amount of welding required.

The large format also gives us the opportunity to make the best possible use of each plate when “nesting” the shapes required by our customers before we cut them using our computer controlled high definition plasma cutting machines. In fact the majority of our customers prefer to purchase their 304 and 304L material as ready cut to size items.

Click here to see details of our most popular stock sizes in Grade 304 and Grade 304L stainless steel plate.



Plate Cutting

Plate Processing

  • Weld preparations
  • Grinding
  • Drilling and tapping
  • Pressing
  • Machining
  • Shotblasting and painting
  • Rolling
  • Rolled shells
  • Dished ends
  • Clad plates


 Stainless Steel, Duplex pdf icon

A full list of sizes, specifications and processing facilities of our range of wide, large area stainless and super steel plate.

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Or, contact the stainless steel team directly on: | +44 (0) 1922 748 710