Iron railing has been in vogue for the last many centuries and has not gone out of fashion even then. The popularity is due to long life. Read al about iron railings in the article.
Traditional Yet Modern – Iron Railings
Iron railings have been used since the start of industrial revolution in the sixteenth and seventeenth century. At that time, the metallurgy was still an art and not an exact science as it is today. Being the work of art, it was costly to have iron railings and only the rich could afford the wrought iron and cast iron railings. The technique of welding was non-existent and metal joining was only be heating and hammering together or riveting.
The iron railings may be classified as wrought iron railings, cast iron railings or the steel railings. Stainless steel railings were non-existent in seventeenth century.
Now after the fashion has gone through many iterations the iron railings have never got out of fashion since the life of the iron railings is more than the life cycle of fashions. Iron railings will never go out of fashion any time.
The metal used in railings was primarily iron although the rich and the kings used other metals including gold for railings inside the houses.
Metal Used In Iron Railings
Wrought Iron railings: Wrought iron railings were made be a laborious process of heating the pieces of iron to red-hot heat and hammering out the pieces of the railings to the required shape and size. The work was labor intensive and only those artistic tendencies and the ability to work hard were able to make the wrought iron railings. Since the artists are never hard workers, and vice versa, the supply was limited, and hence the prices were very high.
Cast iron railings: The cast iron railings were made by melting the iron and casting the hot iron into molds. The molds were made from sand and used for making cast iron railings. The railings were fragile and if one breaks, it was virtually impossible at that time to repair the broken railing. It had to be handled with care and not many would go for the cast iron railing except the rich persons.
Mild steel railings: The mild steel made its appearance some where in the eighteenth century and was immediately popular material for fencing and railing. The pieces could be cold worked and joined by riveting. The cold working was the major advantage and this increased its use for everything including the used for railings.
Advances in Iron Railings
Advances in welding technology changes the way we used iron for railings. Now it was possible to bend the iron rods in shapes that were hitherto unimaginable and it was possible to join them with welding. The welding technology also made it possible for us to reduce the weight and cost without reducing the strength. As the iron rods were weldable, the repair also became easy.
Now it is possible to make railings out of plates and bend them into shapes as required. The material remains the same old iron but now the form can be changed to make it look more attractive and maintenance free. Stainless steel is utilized for this purpose in increasing quantities, and the stainless steel looks more elegant and requires no maintenance at all (other than regular cleaning).
Thus, iron railings have given way to stainless steels and it is being increasing used for all railing related work.