Stainless steel: magnetic or not?

The tutor investigates the idea that stainless steel is non-magnetic.

I’ve heard from more than one source that stainless steel is non-magnetic: if you put a magnet to it, there isn’t attraction like you might expect with “ordinary” steel.

According to Scientific American, some stainless steel is magnetic, but the most common kind (Type 304) isn’t. What makes Type 304 nonmagnetic: its content of nickel, manganese, carbon, and nitrogen.

Stainless steel made from just iron and chromium (13 to 18 percent Cr) likely will be magnetic.

The presence of certain elements in the steel affects its atomic pattern; some patterns result in magnetic attraction, while others do not.


Jack of Oracle Tutoring by Jack and Diane, Campbell River, BC.

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