Stainless steel surface finishes

ASTM EN Production Look and applications

Cold rolled, bright annealed and skin passed. Smooth, bright, almost mirror reflective surface.

Typical (Ra): 0,05-0,1µm

2R is manufactured in a comparable manner to 2B, with the annealing process taking place in a special oven free of oxygen. This results in a reflective surface with a minimal roughness of approximately 0.05 - 0.1µm.


2R surfaces are commonly used in scenarios where reflectivity is crucial, but accuracy is not a primary concern. For example:


  • Traffic mirrors
  • Trailers for highway trucks
  • The interior of dishwashers and washing machines
  • Commercial refrigerators
  • Equipment used in food processing
  • Construction hardware
  • Medical instruments
No. 1 1D

Hot rolled, heat treated and pickled.

Typical (Ra): 3,0-7,5µm

1D surfaces are typically used for construction and non-decorative purposes. The surface has a high roughness and is therefore sometimes polished afterwards. The look is dull and free of milling scale.


  • Building applications
  • Air heating systems
  • Interior support systems
  • Heat exchangers
No. 2B 2B

Cold rolled, final rolling with polished rolls, heat treated, annealed, pickled and skin passed. The surface is smooth and slightly shiny.

Typical (Ra): 0,1-0,8µm

2B has a smooth, moderately reflective surface with good flatness control.


Due to this appearance, 2B is used in architecture applications, when surface uniformity is not required.


Other common applications include:


  • Refrigerant systems
  • Pastry tools
  • Storage tanks
  • Drum dryers
  • Photovoltaic panels
  • Food processing technology
  • Pharmaceutical machinery
No. 2D 2D

Cold rolled, heat treated and pickled. Smooth, but with a rougher, less reflective surface than 2B.

Typical (Ra): 0,2-0,8µm

2D is not rolled with polished rolls in the end. This results in a dull slightly darker, less reflective surface, like the 1D finish. Common applications for 2D stainless steels are:


  • Chemical processing machinery
  • Roof drainage systems
  • Car exhausts
  • Railcar parts
  • Refinery equipment
No. 3 1G-2G

The (mostly cold rolled – 2B) material is directionally wet-polished with an abrasive belt of grit 100-120 and creates a satin-like finish commonly used in the industry.

Typical (Ra): >1,0µm

After the polish, the material has a light, but matte finish, which is often used for further polishing. It is typically used for decorative purposes in interior/exterior architecture but also used in kitchen and other home applications.

Other applications of this finish are:


  • Food processing machinery
  • Laboratory equipment
  • Kitchen appliances
  • Architectural interior fixtures
  • Brewery equipment
No. 4 1J-2J

This directionally wet-polished finish is achieved by using the finer grit 120-180. The No.4 satin-like surface is among the most popular surfaces.

Typical (Ra): 0,2 – 1,0µm

The No.4 finish looks smoother and brighter than the No.3 finish and has a fine, slightly reflective surface structure. Due to its look, the surface is one of the most popular and widely used in various industries. Examples are:


  • Interior/Exterior architecture
  • Elevators
  • Kitchen sinks
  • Furniture
  • Beverage equipment
No. 5 2K

This directionally wet-polished finish is achieved by using a series of abrasive materials (sandpaper & wirebrush) to create a uniform and consistent surface texture without imperfections. Stainless steel surface No. 5 is a type of finish commonly used in industrial and architectural applications. It is also known satin or brushed finish.

Typical (Ra): 0,5-0,8µm

The surface is characterized by a matte, non-reflective appearance, with a series of fine parallel lines running in one direction.

Stainless steel surface No. 5 is commonly used in applications where both aesthetic appearance and durability are important. It is often used in architectural applications such as cladding, handrails, and signage, as well as in industrial applications such as kitchen equipment, medical equipment, and automotive components.


Compared to other finishes, No. 5 has a slightly rougher texture, which makes it more resistant to scratches and abrasions. It also has a slightly higher coefficient of friction, which can make it easier to grip and handle in certain applications.
Overall, stainless steel surface No. 5 is a versatile finish that offers a balance of durability, aesthetic appeal, and functional performance, making it a popular choice in a wide range of industries and applications.

No. 6 1K-2K

This non-directional wet-polished finish is even finer than the No.4 polishing and achieved by wet-polishing the surface with a grit 240-320 abrasive belt.

Typical (Ra): <0,5µm

The No.6 finish looks smoother than the No.4 finish and is less reflective than the No.4 finish. It is less used nowadays but has been very popular in architecture of the late 20th century.

Common applications include:


  • Statues and ornaments
  • Exterior architectural applications