Stellite 6 vs 316 SS – What’s the Difference?

Choosing the right materials for your project is crucial for success in industrial applications. For high-temperature or corrosive environments, two materials often come up in conversations Stellite 6 and 316 Stainless Steel (SS). But what are they exactly, and what sets them apart? This blog post explores the key differences between Stellite 6 and 316 SS and help you determine which is best for your application.

Difference between Stellite 6 and 316 SS


Stellite 6 is a cobalt-based alloy known for its excellent wear resistance and ability to withstand high temperatures and contact with abrasive materials. It comprises cobalt, chromium, tungsten, carbon, and sometimes molybdenum. On the other hand, 316 SS is a popular stainless steel grade used in various applications due to its excellent corrosion resistance properties. It is a mixture of iron, chromium, nickel, and molybdenum with a low carbon content.

Strength and Hardness

Stellite 6 is known for its superior hardness and strength compared to 316 SS. It is much harder, with a Rockwell hardness of up to HRC 58, making it ideal for applications where abrasion resistance is key. Meanwhile, 316 SS is not as hard, with a typical hardness around HRC 25. However, 316 SS has excellent tensile strength and is highly resistant to corrosion, making it a go-to material for applications that require toughness and durability.

Corrosion Resistance

Stellite 6 is not as corrosion-resistant as 316 SS, as it contains only a small amount of nickel and no molybdenum. It is prone to pitting and crevice corrosion when exposed to corrosive environments, such as highly acidic or alkaline solutions. On the other hand, 316 SS is one of the most corrosion-resistant stainless steel grades, with excellent resistance to pitting, crevice corrosion, and even stress corrosion cracking.

Weldability and Machinability

Stellite 6 is much harder than 316 SS, making it more challenging to machine and weld. It requires specialised equipment and techniques to fabricate, but once done correctly, it can withstand high temperatures, wear, and corrosion. Meanwhile, 316 SS is relatively easy to machine and weld, with excellent formability and ductility.


Lastly, one of the most significant differences between Stellite 6 and 316 SS is their cost. Stellite 6 is more expensive than 316 SS due to its higher cobalt content and the specialised manufacturing techniques required to produce it. 316 SS, on the other hand, is a readily available and cost-effective material, making it a popular choice for industrial applications. For More information visit marketsmartb2b


Choosing the right material for your application is critical for success, and Stellite 6 and 316 SS are two materials with unique properties and strengths. If you require wear resistance, high strength and can tolerate its higher cost, Stellite 6 might be the right choice for you. Meanwhile, if you need excellent corrosion resistance, toughness, and affordability, 316 SS is your best bet. Remember that each material has advantages and limitations, so it’s vital to analyse your application’s requirements before deciding.

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