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Old 19-11-2014, 22:11   #1
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Austenitic steel

Hello all,
My first post on this illustrious website.
Am in the research phase of buying my first yacht.
Have come across a steely that is quite appealing, although my preference would be GRP It is said to be constructed of Austenitic Alloyed steel. The very pleasant owner says the material is magnetic, indicating a fair amount of iron, but also contains some copper. Apart from that he has no specification or further idea of the molecular makeup of the material.
Although the boat is 26 old, it quite appealing from many points.
But after Googling around and reading a few confusing scientific papers and graphs etc on steel composition am still confused as to the pros and cons of Austenitic Alloyed steel.
Does anyone have a layman's explanation that they would care to share.
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Old 19-11-2014, 23:07   #2
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Re: Austenitic steel

Corten Steel is popular boat building material with copper in it.
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Old 19-11-2014, 23:54   #3
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Re: Austenitic steel

Thanks Guy. Will consult Google Engineering for that too.
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Old 20-11-2014, 03:25   #4
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Re: Austenitic steel

Yes Corten is most probably the material type the boat is fabricated from and this is also known as "weathering steel". It is a steel designed for structural use that withstands weathering corrosion. As an example, Sydney Tower is made of a grade of the stuff and is unpainted and almost has an anodised appearance despite it's nearly 40 years of age.
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Old 20-11-2014, 07:04   #5
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Re: Austenitic steel

Thanks. Yes, that is starting to seem the case. Initial research of "Corten" steel suggests that it looses it non-rusting ability, for want of better term, if painted other than very meticulously, as it needs air to form the initial corrosion barrier that I think you refer to. Seller does indicate that he has been meticulous with maintenance of the hull and other aspects but am feeling maybe I would be better off with a material less "spooky" for my first yacht. Yet, he doesn't refer to it as Corten or weathering steel. The advert for it doesn't mention the copper component, but he he did in discussion.
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Old 20-11-2014, 07:35   #6
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Re: Austenitic steel

Neil,

Investigation of providence seems your best course.... Manufacturer, or if home built...


Barring that...
The following is in the US...
You CAN.... for a few hundred bucks plus "service call" probably have a guy come out with a spectrophotometer (or Xdiff/XF) to give you the exact alloy composition... OR... If a small coupon sample were to be taken from the boat, $80ish...

BUT.... the boat has lasted 26 yrs... SO it's probably pretty good stuff!
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Old 20-11-2014, 07:59   #7
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Corten requires specialized consumables, techniques and skill to weld so it's unlikely to have been built by a numpty.
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Old 20-11-2014, 08:02   #8
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Re: Austenitic steel

Quote:
Originally Posted by Neilhoh View Post
Thanks. Yes, that is starting to seem the case. Initial research of "Corten" steel suggests that it looses it non-rusting ability, for want of better term, if painted other than very meticulously, as it needs air to form the initial corrosion barrier that I think you refer to. Seller does indicate that he has been meticulous with maintenance of the hull and other aspects but am feeling maybe I would be better off with a material less "spooky" for my first yacht. Yet, he doesn't refer to it as Corten or weathering steel. The advert for it doesn't mention the copper component, but he he did in discussion.
How about Monel? That would be an amazing thing.
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Old 20-11-2014, 08:16   #9
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Re: Austenitic steel

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How about Monel? That would be an amazing thing.
$$$$$
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Old 20-11-2014, 08:31   #10
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Re: Austenitic steel

You will want to get an ultrasound of the entire hull to measure its thickness.

Ultrasonic thickness measurement - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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Old 20-11-2014, 09:20   #11
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Re: Austenitic steel

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How about Monel? That would be an amazing thing.
I think I have posted this link before but here it is again:

BIG YACHT NOW JUNK AFTER 6 WEEKS' USE - Sea Call's Monel Metal-Steel Hull Ruined by Electrolysis, Builders Admit. COSTLY EXPERIMENT FAILS Action of Sea Water Attributed by Metal Makers to Failure to Use Zinc Insulation. - Front Page - NYTimes.com
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Old 20-11-2014, 09:51   #12
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Re: Austenitic steel

That was in 1915! Things might be different today.
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Old 20-11-2014, 11:56   #13
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Re: Austenitic steel

The position of Monel in the galvanic series has changed over the last 100 years?
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Old 20-11-2014, 12:10   #14
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Re: Austenitic steel

They use anodes now?
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Old 20-11-2014, 12:43   #15
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Re: Austenitic steel

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They use anodes now?
Going to be replacing those annodes daily. The boat was scrap six weeks after being launched. That's tons of steel and monel turned to powder a week.
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