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Steel wool


Steel wool is a bundle of strands of very fine soft steel filaments, used in finishing and repair work to polish wood or metal objects, and for household cleaning. It is manufactured by drawing ”steel wool wire”, made from low carbon steel (low enough to be close to plain iron).

Steel wool is commonly used by woodworkers and craftsmen working with paint, lacquer and varnish. Often it is used for professional cleaning processes not only on wooden surfaces but also on marble, stone and glass, because it is softer than these materials.

For household cleaning use in many countries, including the United States, steel wool is sold as soap-impregnated pads under such trade names as Brillo Pad or S.O.S.

Steel wool also serves as an acceptable form of Ne'itzah (scouring) according to Orthodox Jewish laws of Kashrut.

Very fine steel wool is sometimes carried for use as tinder in emergency situations; it burns even when wet, and can be ignited by fire, a spark, or by connecting a battery to produce joule heating. See campfire.

Steel Wool fiber width, mm
Type Lower specification limit Upper specification limit
000# 0.00635 0.00889
00# 0.00889 0.0127
0# 0.0127 0.0381
1# 0.0381 0.0635
2# 0.0635 0.0889
3# 0.0889 0.1143
4# 0.1143 0.1778

In Europe, steel wool products offer an enlarged range of grades like the coarser grades 5 and 6 and the very fine grade 0000. Rust-free (stainless, or inoxydable) steel wool is also available.

See also

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Steel_wool". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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