Steel Weight Calculator

Created by Kenneth Alambra
Reviewed by Dominik Czernia, PhD candidate and Jack Bowater
Last updated: Apr 28, 2022

This steel weight calculator will help you determine the weight of steel pieces like rods, bars, and plates of any size. We loaded this calculator with a variety of steel types to provide you the steel weight you need. In this calculator, you will learn what steel is, as well as how to measure steel weight using its density and its volume, just like how we determine the weight of gravel and asphalt calculator when we are planning to purchase some. If that sounds interesting, just keep on reading.

What is steel?

Steel is a metal alloy with iron as its main component and carbon as its primary alloying element. Even at just around 0.05% to a little above 2% the total weight of steel, carbon can already make iron stronger and more ductile. The more carbon we add to iron, the stronger the steel gets. Adding other alloying elements results in four major steel types- carbon steel, alloy steel, stainless steel, and tool steel.

  • Carbon steel is pretty much the most basic kind of steel since it only has both the iron and carbon in it typically. In some cases, carbon steel can still have some elements, but only these elements: copper, manganese, and silicon.
  • Adding other alloying elements in carbon steel results in our next steel type, the alloy steel. With other alloying elements like manganese (for additional surface hardness), molybdenum (for strength), nickel (for corrosion resistance), and so much more, we can get more specific steel alloys that would suit our needs.
  • One specific steel alloy with unique characteristics is the stainless steel. By adding a minimum of 10% chromium, which provides a barrier from rusting and oxidation, we produce stainless steel. Stainless steels are strong, hard, corrosion-resistant, and usually very shiny, too.
  • The last type is the tool steel. Tool steels are much harder and durable because of the additional heat-treatment procedures they undergo during their production. Because of their extreme properties, we can use tool steels for cutting tools, drill bits, and lots of other applications where steel will be exposed to wear and tear.

Steel products and uses of steel

Illustration of a 20cm X 20cm X 1cm steel plate that is formed to make a mold to make cube-shaped concrete blocks.

We see steel products almost everywhere, from our kitchen utensils to the rebars at the construction site or round pen for our animals. Steel material can either be molded, machined and combined with other materials to form almost any product that we can imagine. In construction, steel is available in forms of rods, tubes, wires, plates, and sheets.

//Steel plates have many uses, most notably in the construction and fabrication of various steel products. We can cut steel plates to shape, punch, or drill holes to be bolted together for movable connections or welded them together for fixed connections. Some of the steel plates' purposes are: for gusset plates in trusses, flanges for posts, for the fabrication of pressure vessels, boats and ships, and even for military vehicles.//

Why do we need to get the weight of steel?

In the construction industry, steel is commonly priced per unit weight like other raw materials like gravel, sand, and concrete. Since steel is available in various types, shapes, and sizes, pricing steel per unit weight would mean much consistent pricing that the market can use. This way of pricing is why it is essential to know the weight of steel in general.

Other than that, determining the total weight of steel products would be beneficial, especially during their transport. Buying in bulk usually decreases the price of any material because we can save money in properly organized delivery and logistics instead of delivering small quantities at multiple trips.

//Aside from these reasons, knowing the weight of the steel plates we use in our projects can help us see if we can lift the final product we are planning to make like the one we illustrated in the Sample computation of steel weight section of this text. The steel plates' total weight will also help determine the compressive strengths requirements of its supporting structures since steel products can be very heavy. In the next section, we will be discussing how to measure steel plate weight using the plate's dimensions and material density.//

How to calculate weight of steel

Determining the weight of steel only takes a few steps to accomplish. First, we need to know the density of steel alloy we are using. In our steel weight calculator, you will find the density values for each of the most common steel alloys listed there in the Steel type part of our calculator. You can also see them listed here on the table below:

Steel type
Density (kg/m³)
tool steel
7715
wrought iron
7750
carbon tool steel
7820
cold-drawn steel
7830
carbon steel
7840
C1020 HR steel
7850
pure iron
7860
mild steel
7870
stainless steel
8030

After determining the density of the steel alloy we are using, the next step is to obtain the total volume of our steel material. Getting the volume of our steel material depends on its shape and dimensions. By applying the necessary formulas, we can obtain the volume for rods, bars, plates, tubes, and even other complicated shapes. You can check the How to calculate volume? Volume formulas section of our volume calculator for the different volume formulas for the most common shapes we can see around. After obtaining the volume of our steel material, we are now ready to use the formula below:

weight of steel plate = steel plate's volume * density

When using this formula, always make sure to multiply values with the same units of measurements. The resulting unit of measurement of the volume must match the volume part in the density unit. If you need help in converting the units of area or volume, you can check our area converter or our volume converter, respectively, especially if you have multiple values to convert.

If you have multiple steel materials, you can input in our steel weight calculator the quantity of your steel materials to get the overall steel weight. As an exercise in solving the weight of steel, let us consider an example in this text's next section.

Sample computation of steel weight

For our example, let us determine the weight of the steel plates that we would be needing to build-up, let's say, a mold for cube-shaped concrete blocks. For our mold, we need to cut 5 pieces of 20-cm squares from a 1-cm thick mild steel (7,870 kg/m³) plate as shown in the illustration below:

Illustration of a 20cm X 20cm X 1cm steel plate that is formed to make a mold to make cube-shaped concrete blocks.

To solve the weight of these cut steel plates, let us first calculate the volume of the steel plate by multiplying its dimensions together. Since we already know that the density of mild steel is in kilograms per cubic meter, let us solve the steel plate volume in cubic meters. Since the 20-centimeter side is equal to 0.2 meters, and the 1-centimeter thickness is equal to 0.01 meters, we can solve the volume of a single piece of the square plate, as shown below:

volume of 1 piece of our steel plate = 0.2 m * 0.2 m * 0.01 m

volume of 1 piece of our steel plate = 0.0004 m³

Solving for its weight, we have:

weight of steel plate = steel plate's volume * density

weight of steel plate = 0.0004 m³ * 7,870 kg/m³

weight of steel plate = 3.148 kilograms

However, since we need five pieces of this square steel plate, the steel plates' total weight would then be 3.148 kg * 5 = 15.74 kilograms in total. That's a lot of weight for just a small piece of cube mold!

Want to learn more?

If you found our steel plate weight calculator informative and would like to learn more about weights of other metals in general, perhaps you would also like to try our metal weight calculator. In our metal weight calculator, you will find much more information about other metals, their densities, and some of their uses. Or take a look at our bend allowance calculator to know how to calculate the correct bending length for sheet metal.

Kenneth Alambra
Steel type
Carbon steel (7840 kg/m³)
Shape
Round bar
Illustration of a round bar that shows its diameter and length.
Details
Diameter (D)
in
Cross-sectional area
in²
Length (L)
ft
Volume of the bar
cu in
Weight
lb
Quantity
Final output
Total weight
lb
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