The differences between types of stainless steel meshes are slight but important. The two most popular makes of mesh currently are the 0.8mm Marine Grade Stainless Steel Mesh and the 0.9mm 304 grade stainless steel mesh.
Some companies claim the 304 grade stainless steel mesh is stronger than the 316 Marine Grade Stainless Steel Mesh because it is thicker, but INVISI-GARD 316 Marine Grade Stainless Steel Mesh proves them wrong as it gains its strength from its Ultra High Tensile wire (900 MPa) from which it is woven. Even thicker wires can be easily cut if they are of low tensile strength.
The main difference between meshes is in the tensile strength of the wire used to weave the strands of steel together. As the wire used in the INVISI-GARD mesh is of such high tensile strength, this process is made more difficult and results in an overall stronger product. The 316 mesh requires specialised weaving equipment to achieve the quality and flatness that is a hallmark of INVISI-GARD mesh. This explains why many cheap imported meshes either pass the knife-shear test but fail on weave quality and flatness, or pass on weave quality and flatness but can be cut like butter.
INVISI-GARD 316 Marine Grade Stainless Steel Mesh has been independently tested to Australian Standards and passes the AS5041-2008 for Knife-Shear test up to Australian Standards.
Grade 316 should be selected as a minimum within five kilometres of the surf.
Another difference between the 316 and 304 meshes is that the former is more resistant to corrosion. The less expensive grades (such as the 304) are more likely to become tea stained or even suffer more severe weathering.
Grade 316 has excellent corrosion resistance in a wide range of environments. Its main benefit over grade 304 is its improved ability to resist pitting and crevice oxidization. The 316 mesh resists ordinary rusting in virtually all architectural applications, and is often chosen for more aggressive environments such as sea-front buildings and coastal houses.
Grade 316 has virtually the same mechanical, physical and fabrication characteristics as 304 but with better corrosion resistance, particularly to pitting corrosion.