steel strapping

Steel Strap Types: Which One is Right for Your Load?

Steel is one of the strongest metals on earth. It should come as no surprise that man chooses steel time and time again for it’s most important needs.

The Brooklyn Bridge. The Eiffel Tower. The Gateway Arch.

All built from steel.

When you’re choosing strapping for your most important products, look no further than steel strap to meet all your needs.

Check out this article to see what kind of steel strap you should use for your shipping needs.

Quick Review: Strapping

Strapping is a means of securing bundles of items. These bundles can be materials that are being shipped or materials that are being stored.

Bundled items save space in a truck or warehouse, keep individual shipments together, and safely secure a load for transport. Bundling a number of boxes going to the same end destination keeps mistakes from happening – one box won’t get accidentally left behind.

Depending on the size of your operation, you may use the strapping as a way of picking up bundled materials by machine.

There are several questions you need to ask before choosing a type of strapping for your operation. These questions will guide your strapping choice to make sure you pick the right type of steel strap for your bundled material.

  1. What type of product needs strapping?
  2. How much does the product weigh?
  3. Will the product be moved while it is strapped?
  4. For how long does the bundle need to be strapped?
  5. Is the bundled material getting transported or stored?

Strapping Grades For Transport

If you need strapping for transportation, make sure the strapping you choose meets the required standards for the industry. For instance, if you’re shipping your material over rails, the strapping needs to meed the American Association of Railroads standards for straps.

You will also need to choose strapping that meets ASTM standards.

The ratings can look similar, but it’s important to know to what standards you are being held. Ratings are not interchangeable.

Steel Strap Types

Steel is the most common choice for strapping. It can have a very high tensile strength and come in a multitude of grades. It is widely available and relatively inexpensive.

Steel is the strap of choice where you no stretch and high strength. It comes in a variety of widths and thicknesses.

The coating on the strap can also vary based on your required usages. Some coating options for steel straps include wax, paint or zinc.

The most common uses of steel strapping include steel coils, bundles of metal, baling wire, roll end-binding, bricks, and pavers.

Steel strapping is generally sold by the weight rather than by the length.

Here are some of your options for steel straps by steel type:

Regular Steel

Low carbon steel, or regular steel, is great for very heavy shipments. It is dent resistant, and a lot stronger than other types of straps.

If the steel won’t be exposed to extreme weather, and you need low to medium applications, this is the steel strap for you.

High Tensile Steel

Hight tensile strength steel is much stronger than low carbon steel. It is used for heavy-duty applications.

Most railroad shipments require high tensile strapping to secure their loads. This is a great option for securing steel coils or open top cars or trailers.

This is your strongest option for strapping and is what you’ll need if your product is particularly heavy.

Stainless Steel

Stainless steel is a steel alloy. It is made from carbon, iron, and chromium. The addition of chromium makes stainless steel impervious to rust, corrosion, oxidation, and staining.

Stainless steel is an excellent option if your bundles will be exposed to extreme weather. Whether you are storing material outside all winter or shipping it across the country through who-knows-what weather, stainless steel will keep rust from destroying your product.

This option also sustains its flexibility over many years. It won’t become brittle.

Galvanized (Zinc-Coated) Steel

Galvanized steel straps are similar to stainless steel straps in that they do not rust or corrode. That is where the similarity ends.

A galvanized steel strap has undergone a chemical process to coat the steel in zinc. The zinc coating makes the steel much stronger than it was originally. It also makes the strapping UV resistant so that it does not break down after long periods of storage.

The appearance of galvanized steel is unmistakable because all that you see of the outer coating is zinc.

If you are storing your product for long periods of time, consider a zinc-coated steel strap. Keep a close watch on your bundles as a zinc-coated steel strap will start to stretch out after an extended period of time.

Galvanized steel is best when bent and then left. It maintains the most strength and durability in the zinc coating that way.

Steel vs Other Common Types of Strapping

Steel is one of the most commonly used types of strapping due to its low cost, durability, and strength. However, some other types of straps are also available on the market. The two most popular alternatives to steel include plastic and poly straps.

Plastic and poly straps have their merits. They are usable for low weight applications. They weigh less than steel and may be easier for workers to apply. They also come in multiple colors if you need to color-code a shipment.

Steel is the go-to choice for heavy, cumbersome and difficult loads. It won’t break, bend, or split. It will get your product where it’s going safely and securely.

Choose the Right Steel Strapping

As with any business decision, many factors are played out in the decision of what type of strapping you need. The weight of loads, the bulk of each load, the length of storage – the list goes on.

Thankfully a steel strap can check off each of those items on the list. It is a strong and durable material that has been used around the world to safely secure the most important loads for transport.

You can’t go wrong with a steel strap!

Shop our inventory of steel strapping to find the one that is right for your business, or contact us and let one of our experts help you choose the right strap for your load.