Cast Iron vs. Wrought Iron

cast-iron-vs-wrought-ironYou may hear the terms cast iron and wrought iron thrown around a lot when you’re looking at custom welding work. You may think that the two terms are interchangeable, but they re actually quite different. There are numerous differences between cast and wrought iron, but the main difference is how the product is prepared. We’ve broken down all of the differences for you, so you can be better informed in case there comes a time when you need some welding work done!

Cast Iron

Cast iron is pretty much exactly what it sounds like- something made from a cast, or mold. This process begins with iron being melted down, and then poured into a specific mold, depending on what is being made. Cast iron isn’t actually really iron. It is made up of iron alloys, or often gray iron. There are typically traces of other elements, like carbon, manganese, and phosphorus as well.

In order to actually make a cast iron product, iron ore is smelted and mixed with scrap metals. The mixture is then poured into a mold of the desired shape. The product is extremely hard, and tougher than wrought iron, or steel. However, since cast iron is so tough, it can’t be worked with. This means that the product that comes out of the mold is what it will be forever, unle

ss it breaks. Actually, this is one of the few drawbacks of cast iron. Although it is extremely dense, th

e addition of multiple elements with different melting and solidifying temperatures means that the product is solidified while its components are in different phases, creating tension points within the cast. If enough pressure is added, the piece will fracture rather than bend. However, you would have to add a significant amount of pressure to achieve this.

Wrought Iron

Wrought iron is very different than cast iron. Rather than a liquid being p

oured into a mold, the actual metal is “wrought” or worked on to create the desired shape. Unlike cast iron, wrought iron is composed of primarily iron, with about one or two percent of impurities like phosphorous, sulfur, or aluminum oxides.

Although it is still extremely strong, wrought iron is much more malleable than cast iron. This means that the iron used for one project can be reheated and used over and over again to adapt to your needs. Actually, the more a piece of wrought iron is reheated and worked on, the stronger it becomes. Since wrought iron is more malleable, and less heterogeneous than cast iron, it lasts longer in most cases. A piece of wrought iron would have to be exposed to a serious amount of pressure, or extremely high temperatures in order to break or become damaged.

Although both cast and wrought iron have their advantages, they’re not often used in present day. They are typically only worked with by artisans or extremely skilled welders. Both are great for making unique, beautiful pieces!

5 Reasons Why Wrought Iron Railings Boost Property Value

wrought iron railings toronto

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Wrought iron railings are increasingly popular thanks to the many benefits they bring. Although some people have been hesitant to embrace wrought iron railings, Toronto is quickly catching on the fact that they have many advantages and, importantly, have a positive effect on a property’s value. Thanks to the strength and elegance of modern wrought iron, these railings can make excellent additions to all kinds of landscaping projects around the house.

When It Comes to Wrought Iron Railings, Toronto Recognizes their Value

Take a look around the nicer neighbourhoods of the city and you’ll see more and more examples of wrought iron being used in both traditional and imaginative ways to complement the existing structure and landscape. These railings are not there simply for security or beauty, but they provide both. In fact, their benefits are so important that many realtors are advising that, by not having wrought iron railings, Toronto residents could actually be negatively affecting the value of their property. Let’s look at why this is:

  • They Provide Transparent Security – Traditionally, the main purpose of railings was to provide security. They were thought of as superior to walls and fences, as they didn’t obscure or hide away your property, and they didn’t block your view. This still applies today – railings are better at deterring intruders, as they are difficult to climb over. Yet, you can still talk to your neighbours through the railings and show off your beautiful lawn, plants or flowers.
  • They Add Elegance – Without wrought iron railings, Toronto’s yards and gardens would lack the same level of class. Think of the damage that can be done to a neighbourhood’s ambience when all of the properties are walled or fenced off. Iron railings have the opposite effect – they keep your property looking open, maintaining a neighbourly openness. Wrought iron railings even improve the impression given of certain properties, adding suggestions of tradition and family to what otherwise might be boring, characterless buildings.
  • They Are Strong – Unlike fences and some walls, iron railings are very difficult to damage or knock down. Even the strongest storms don’t trouble them.
  • They Are Long-lasting – Again, unlike fences, iron railings are known to stand the test of time. Put them up today and they’ll still be strong when your great-grandchildren are getting old.
  • They Increase the Value of Your Property – Numerous studies have shown that landscaping boundary features such as walls, fences and railings increase the value of the properties they are built on. Railings are usually the best choice for a property bordering a street or road, for the reasons of the openness and security mentioned earlier. Fences and walls can be damaged easily – they can start to look worn very quickly compared to railings, and this actually reverses the positive effect they initially had. As railings remain elegant and strong for a very long time, they are also the safer option.

If your property doesn’t currently have iron railings, take the time to visualize how much better it would look with them. Their numerous benefits make them an obvious choice for your next home improvement project.

8 Reasons to Love Wrought Iron Railings

wrought iron railings torontoWalk down the street and look at the wrought iron railings in Toronto. They feel like they’ve been here from the beginning of the city, and some possibly have. This feeling wrought iron exudes – one of permanence and “rightness” – speaks to the qualities of wrought iron itself: beauty, durability, strength and rustic charm. All things we associate with the oldest, most influential civilizations.

Why You Should Choose Wrought Iron Railings in Toronto

Wrought iron has made an indelible mark on any number of architectural styles. As a result it’s still in high demand today. Here are 8 reasons we love wrought iron railings in no particular order.

  1. Flexibility – Wrought iron is one of the few man made materials that would work in both a colonial era home and as an integral part of a minimalist contemporary design scheme.
  2. Durability – Wrought iron is extremely durable and long lasting. Any risk of rust can be virtually eliminated by simply applying a new coat of paint every couple of years.
  3. Malleability – Wrought iron can be worked into virtually any shape you can imagine. As a result wrought iron railings often display an exquisite level of craftsmanship.
  4. Strength – Wrought iron railings are renowned for their high degree of strength. There’s little chance they’ll ever break away like wooden railings can.
  5. Beauty – When done right wrought iron railings ramp up the visual appeal of just about any type of home setting and provide a sense of completeness other materials can’t match.
  6. Maintenance – As in “low” maintenance. If a part of your railing is damaged it can be removed by a Pro Weld craftsman and replaced without having to create an entirely new railing.
  7. Eco-friendliness – Antique wrought iron is in high demand on the resale market. But if you can’t find a buyer, don’t worry: the material is still completely recyclable.
  8. Security – Install a beautiful and strong wrought iron railing around your pool deck to prevent accidents, or across your balcony to keep people safe without infringing on the view.

Wrought iron is as much a material of the 21st century as it was of the 19th for many of the same reasons. If you’re in the market to replace your current railings you should seriously consider installing wrought iron railings in Toronto.

Pro Weld offers a complete line of wrought iron fabrication services. Give us a call on (905) 669-8633 to learn more about this amazing and timeless building material and find out if it’s right for your home.