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What is Steel Mesh?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 28 September 2014
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Steel mesh is a type of wire mesh that can be used for a wide range of applications. Woven into a criss-cross mesh pattern that is often very small, the mesh is normally very strong and will hold up in many different environments. Sometimes referred to as Dutch wire cloth, this handy stainless steel mesh is popular for not only its strength and durability, but also often for the visual interest it adds.

One of the main benefits of this woven stainless steel is that the mesh provides protection without completely obscuring the view or inhibiting the airflow. For this reason, the use of steel mesh in manufacturing plants and warehouses is very common. The mesh can be used to effectively bar unauthorized access to raw materials or finished goods, while still allowing them to be visible for inventory purposes.

There are other uses for the mesh in construction of homes and public buildings. Steel mesh is an ideal medium for screen gutters around fireplaces, as well as for covering chimney caps. The mesh can also be installed over sheets of insulation, helping to keep the sheets in place for long periods of time.

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Outside building construction applications, steel mesh is also utilized in the creation of automobile grills on some makes and models. The mesh can also be employed in military equipment as it can be used to shield certain radio frequencies, helping to create a more secure signal. Non-fraying mesh can be used as the backdrop behind home plate for softball and baseball fields.

Because welded stainless steel mesh is available in several different sizes, it also has decorative possibilities. Built-in or freestanding cabinetry can often make use of steel mesh rather than glass in cabinet doors. This approach makes it possible to quickly see what is in the cabinet without opening any doors. At the same time, the mesh partially conceals the contents so they do not immediately catch the eye as someone enters the room.

Steel mesh used for decorative purposes may be painted in order to enhance the look. Black mesh is often used for window screens, while mesh used for pie safes and other furniture in the home may be painted any color to go along with the d├ęcor of the room. For an industrial look, the mesh can be left the original steel gray if desired.

The uses for steel mesh are many and varied. One of the main reasons is that the mesh holds up very well over time, even under severe weather conditions. By treating the mesh with a sealant to slow down the process of rusting, the fibers remain strong for many years and thus decreasing the frequency of replacement.

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