Ferrous & Non-Ferrous Metal Information Print

Ferrous Metals - Metals that contain iron.

Non-Ferrous Metals - Metals that do not contain iron.


Some Ferrous Metals & Properties

Name Alloy Of Properties Uses
Mild Steel Carbon 0.1 - 0.3%

Iron 99.9 - 99.7%

Tough. High tensile strength. Can be case hardened. Rusts very easily.

Most common metal used in school workshops. Used in general metal products and engineering.
Carbon Steel Carbon 0.6 - 1.4%

Iron 99.4 - 98.6%

Tough. Can be hardened and tempered.


Cutting tools such as drills.

Stainless Steel Iron, nickel and chromium Tough, resistant to rust and stains.

Cutlery, medical instruments.

Cast Iron Carbon 2 - 6%

Iron 98 - 94%

Strong but brittle. Compressive strength very high.

Castings, manhole covers, engines.

Wrought Iron Almost 100% iron Fibrous, tough, ductile, resistant to rusting.

Ornamental gates and railings. Not in much use today.


Some Non-Ferrous Metals & Properties



Alloy Of Properties Uses
Aluminium  Light Grey

Aluminium 95%

Copper 4%

Manganese 1%

Ductile, soft, malleable, machines well. Very light.

Window frames, aircraft, kitchen ware.
Copper Reddish-Brown

Not an alloy

Ductile, can be beaten into shape. Conducts electricity and heat.

Electrical wiring, tubing, kettles, bowls, pipes.




Mixture of copper and zinc 65% - 35% most common ratio.
Hard. Casts and machines well. Surface tarnishes. Conducts electricity.
Parts for electrical fittings, ornaments.
Silver Whitish grey

Mainly silver but alloyed with copper to give sterling silver.

Ductile, Malleable, solders, resists corrosion.


Jewellery, solder, ornaments.

Lead Bluish grey

Not an alloy.

Soft, heavy, ductile, loses its shape under pressure.

Solders, pipes, batteries, roofing.