Stainless steel fittings are used where corrosion could reduce the operating efficiency of the fitting either by weakening its rated load capacity, inhibiting its attachment function or simply spoiling its appearance. However, stainless steel can be specified in 2 main types. Simple hooks and sheet material which may be used in damp but not seriously corrosive environments is usually fabricated in 304 type stainless whereas high performance fittings or those used in highly corrosive environments are usually fabricated in 316 stainless. What is the difference? Impossible to say by visual inspection. In simple terms, 304 contains 18% chromium and 8% nickel whereas 316 contains 16% chromium, 10% nickel and 2% molybdenum. An exact identification can be obtained using a laser scanner of the type used in production by GTF. Products identified as being of either stainless group are routinely scanned at GTF to ensure that the supplied material corresponds to that ordered.