Product Types

Beams

Ensure structural integrity with the relentless strength of steel beams that Kloeckner Metals routinely stock nationally.

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Formats

Kloeckner offers the full range of structural products. With capabilities to produce a variety of shapes, from simple to complex, cut to any length and finished for assembly, Kloeckner stocks the complete inventory of the structural product group.

Learn More About Each Beams Grade

More Details About Each Beam

Kloeckner Metals regularly carries several beam products, including the following:

  • A36 S Beams

    A36 S beams are commonly used in construction and civil engineering. They have a low carbon content and few other elements in their alloy. Consequently, A36 S beams feature an intermediate tensile and yield strength. They can easily be welded, formed, or machined.

    These products are hot rolled, and you can specify your copper content and steel beam sizes. Often, A36 S beams are hot-dip galvanized for protection from the weather and other corrosive factors.

  • A992 Beams

    A992 steel is the most commonly used grade of steel in construction. It’s often found in bridges, building frames, and other applications where corrosion-resistance is important.

    It has a slightly more diverse chemical composition than A36 steel and a higher minimum strength requirement. A992 steel can compose either W beams or S beams but is especially popular for W beams.

    With its higher strength and strength-to-weight ratio, A992 steel may be dual certified as A572 grade 50 steel.

  • A709-50W Beams

    ASTM A709-50W is a high-strength steel with strong corrosion resistance whatever its copper content. Its minimum yield strength stands at 50 ksi and its minimum tensile strength at 70 ksi.

    A709-50W steel has a minimum atmospheric corrosion index of 6.00. This kind of steel is frequently used in railroad bridges, pedestrian bridges, and high bridge girders.

  • A572-50 Beams

    A572-50 beams provide a very high strength-per-weight ratio. Increasingly, A572 steel is replacing A36 steel, which has to be thicker to achieve the same strength. This grade of steel is hot rolled and can be black, galvanized, or primed. It can form both W beams and S beams.

  • A529-50 M Beams

    Possibly the most widely used steel grade for making beams, A529-50 steel features a 50 ksi minimum yield strength. It also contains 0.2% copper to protect against weather and other corrosives.

    >M beams have a low weight-per-foot ratio and are often used in the frames of manufactured homes and recreational vehicles. Kloeckner regularly supplies hot rolled A529-50 M (miscellaneous) beams in lengths less than 40 feet.

General Info About Beams

Steel beams support the framework of most buildings. Construction engineers may use beams of widely different sizes, lengths, and specifications to handle a variety of loads.

All beams consist of two horizontal steel pieces called flanges and one vertical component known as the web. The flanges and the web can be arranged to look like the capital letter H (called H beams) or the capital letter I (called I beams).

H beams are made of rolled steel and have longer flanges and a thicker web than I beams. Although it looks like a single piece of steel, an H beam actually features a bevel where three pieces of metal come together. In contrast, I beams are composed of a single piece of steel not welded or riveted together. I beams have tapered edges, and their cross sections are taller than their width.

Beams are sometimes called steel lintels, steel girders or load bearing steels. They are generally categorized into either S (standard) shapes or W (wide) shapes. S beams are used in standard construction and have tapered edges. An I beam, therefore, falls into the S category. W beams are wide-flange and have equal thickness from tip to web. An H beam is a W beam.

Confused yet? Hopefully, not.

Let’s make it simpler.

  • H beams are tall and wide.
  • I beams are short and narrow.
  • H beams are usually stronger than I beams.
  • I beams are usually lighter than H beams.
  • H beams are wide beams (W).
  • I beams are standard beams (S).

Frequently Asked Questions About Beams

  • What is a steel beam used for?

    Steel beams are used to support heavy loads. The size, shape, and geometry of the beams determine exactly where they go in a construction project or civil engineering application.

  • How much does a steel beam cost?

    The price of a beam varies according to several factors including size, grade of steel, and profit margin. In general, it costs about $100 to $400 per foot to install a steel beam, including labor and installation materials, and about $6 to $18 per foot for the beam itself.

  • What is the difference between an I beam, an S beam, and a W beam?

    Learning about steel beams can feel a lot like studying the alphabet again for the first time. Simply put, steel beams are either standard (S) or wide (W). I beams and H beams got their names because their shapes resemble those letters. An I beam is a standard beam, and an H beam is a wide beam.

  • Do I steel beams include S steel beams?

    An I steel beam is a kind of S steel beam. In the name “S steel beam,” the S stands for standard. S beams feature narrow, tapered flanges and thus are lighter than W beams.

  • What are typical steel I beam sizes?

    I beams come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Standards vary according to the steel association making them. An I beam in Japan, Germany, or the Ukraine might come in entirely different sizes than one in the U.S. In general, however, the narrowest I beam size is 3.5 inches deep and the largest is 24 inches deep. 

  • Where can I find steel I beams for sale?

    You can buy steel I beams from many metal suppliers, including online retailers, major home improvement chains, and international steel fabrication companies. Kloeckner Metals regularly stocks all standard size steel I beams. The cost and quality of the beams may differ between suppliers.

  • What are typical steel beam dimensions and weights?

    Steel beams have a distinctive measurement notation. It consists of a letter followed by two different numbers. For example, you might see a steel beam designated as S24 x 121. This beam is a standard (S) beam that’s 24 inches deep and has a nominal weight of 121 lbs per square foot. You may see additional numbers showing the beam’s area, depth, flange, and web thickness.

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Additional Product Types

Kloeckner offers more than just structural products. With more than 200,000 products available across 50 North American branches, we supply the largest variety of products in need by the metals industry. See below for a selection of other products we supply.
Structural Steel Shapes
Kloeckner Metals routinely stocks a wide variety...
Channels
Kloeckner Metals supplies structural channels, MC channels,...
Angles
Kloeckner Metals offers structural angles and bar...
Structural Steel Plate
Structural steel plate is a Kloeckner Metals...

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