What kind of steel for ornamental iron work?

I'd like to build porch railings as a first ornamental iron project. King Archetectural Metals has a great selection of materials. I'm looking for
suggestions on what material type is a good choice for this project.
For example, should 1 " posts be solid or square tubing? If I use tubing, the choices are 16 ga (O&P), 14 ga (P&O) and 11 ga plain hot rolled. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
Thanks, -Tom
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For 1 inch I would use the 11ga hot rolled. For 1/2 I would use solid.
The thin walled tubing is for the junk they sell at Home Depot etc.
The thin stuff looks like it would be found on a trailer somewhere.
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Roger Shoaf

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16ga is too small, 14ga is ok for non load bearing posts, use the .120 wall for posts that are anchored and need to resist side loads. The P&O gurantees a nice surface finish with no surface rust. The mill finish can be jsut as nice but if your supplier doesn't treat it well, it may have some surface rust spots.
1" square solid bar is almost exactly 50% more resistant to bending than a 1" x.120 wall tube but weighs more than twice as much. If your railing has some right angle bends in it, use the tube. If it is a short stub for a sidewalk used by your 300 pound mother in law overlooking a retaining wall and has just just two posts , you might go with the solid bar.
Tom Bloom wrote:

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If it were my mother-in-law and I thought I could get away with it, I might look into something in a higher gauge.
(top posted for your convenience) ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Keep the whole world singing . . . . DanG (remove the sevens) snipped-for-privacy@7cox.net

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Nope, I would go with 28 ga. as a "maximum" if my mother-inlaw had any chance of leaning on it.
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Depends on what kind of relationship you have with your mother inlasw's kid. :)
DanG wrote:

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Tom Bloom wrote:

If you go with 1" square tubing and have some scraps of 3/4' steel pipe around, you might see if you can drive pieces about 10" long into the bottom ends of the posts if you're gonna be setting them into holes in stone or concrete.
That'll extend the life of those posts quite a bit should they start rusting where they go into the holes.
BTW, I still prefer poured lead for securing iron posts into holes in masonry. I've never had much luck keeping railings from wiggling when I've used Rockite or similar "expanding cements" to set them in and the randkids swing on 'em. When lead is used, you can peen it down with a hammer and punch to close it up if it ever does get a little loose. Plus, melting and pouring lead yourself has a nice retro feel to it. <G>
HTH,
Jeff
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^^^^ Isn't 9 inch pipe a little large for ornamental work? ;o)
Tim
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Traditional pipe, handrail, and post setting was done with molten sulphur, not lead. The new expansive set grouts have pretty much replaced it.
(top posted for your convenience) ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Keep the whole world singing . . . . DanG (remove the sevens) snipped-for-privacy@7cox.net

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All the railings at my schools (which had _all_ been flamecut off for steel for the war effort) were set in lead.
This was in the UK
Mark Rand RTFM
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Jeff,
Aren't you in Mass.? I understood they will make you hire a state licensed lead abatement contractor if you have lead solder in your rain gutters.<G>
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