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The Value of Implant Grade Alloys

More body jewelers have seen the value of using implant grade metals, like ASTM F138 316 L VM Stainless Steel, for products that will be worn in or on the body. These alloys are certified to an ASTM "F" specification, which when applied to metals, signifies that the quality of the alloy is acceptable to be used in a medical application. Some of these "F specs" indicate implant grade, while others indicate surgical instrumentation grade. It is important to make sure that the material used is to the implant grade. These grades go through an additional process called "vacuum melting" (the "VM" in 316L-VM) which not only removes impurities, but in the case of stainless steel, allows for a better surface layer on the material. This layer prevents the leeching of elements, like nickel, into the body. Very important for people with nickel allergies.

"Surgical Steel" refers to a variety of alloys. Some of them are used for body jewelry, but only a few specific grades like ASTM F-138 are proven bio-compatible. The term "surgical steel" often simply means that it is instrument grade--used in scalpels, hypodermic needles, and any other use that involves only temporary contact with the body.

Implant grade alloys cost more then lesser quality material, but it amounts to a fraction of the price of the finished product. Considering the benefits to customer confidence, marketing possibilities, and the image of the jeweler, price isn't such an issue.

Nickel Sensitivity

The EEC Nickel Directive is a regulation that requires a low rate of nickel release for all materials used for accessories that have direct contact with ones skin. Since allergies to this element are common it is a good idea to invest in a product that is low in nickel, or is proven to not release nickel into the body.

Commercially Pure Titanium is also ideal for people with concerns about nickel sensitivity. CP grade titanium can be anodized to create jewelry of different colors without affecting the safety, and is certified to ASTM F-67. We also carry Ti 6Al4V ELI that is ASTM F-136 compliant as a stronger implant grade material. 6-4 ELI (extra low interstitials) is commonly used in artifical joints and permanent spinal repair.

Ask for Mill Test Reports

M. Vincent and Associates is dedicated to the satisfaction of our customers. We only sell material that will last, therefore we recommend investing in material that has implant grade specifications, such as ASTM F138, when purchasing material to put in someone's body. Insist on mill test reports when you are dealing with someone's health. This insures that the material you are buying is traceable to the originating mill and is the authentic product you intend on using.

Medical Grade Stainless Steel Nose Ring

Nickel Directive is a regulation that requires a low rate of nickel release for all materials used for accessories that have direct contact with ones skin. Since allergies to this allow are common it is a good idea to invest in a product that is low in nickel.

Titanium is a metal that is ideal for people with concerns about nickel sensitivity. This material can be anodized to create jewelry of different colors without affecting the safety. We carry implant certified titanium like Ti6Al4V ELI that is ASTM F-136 compliant and commercially pure titanium that is ASTM F-67 compliant.

M. Vincent and Associates are dedicated to the satisfaction of our customers. We only sell material that will last, therefore we recommend investing in material that has implant grade specifications such as ASTM F138 certified when purchasing material.

Have you found the perfect alloy for your needs, only to have metal distributors ignore your quote requests? Maybe they've gone to the trouble of "no quoting" you, but haven't explained why or offered any alternatives. Have you heard the dreaded words "I can get it for you, but you're going to get (and pay for) 1500 pounds more than you want"? Those perfect plans with the perfect alloy are now just a lot of wasted effort.

We're here to help you avoid this situation. We're more than just a stocking distributor, we're the company that has always exhausted every possibility when sourcing materials for our customers. This has given us a deeper knowledge on the widest range of alloys than our competition. We can tell you which dream materials haven't been in the commercial distribution network since the day they were first invented. We can offer advice on which material will come closest to your ideal alloy. An alloy to get you through until you feel confident that you will go into full scale production, or an alloy to replace the one you were counting on.

Often times we can even walk back into our warehouse, pack up a few feet of some exotic alloy and ship it to you the same day. Fully certified, with mill test reports.

engineer sketching a metal part

We stock and supply 316 LVM Sheet to the medical specification of ASTM F139.

Stock thickness range is from .039" to .238" with standard sheet sizes of 12" x 72".

For sizing outside of this range, or for large quantity, call our Supply Chain Management specialists at 1-800-447-3317 to secure orders for just in time delivery.

Give us a call when you need 6AL-4V ELI titanium sheet. We can supply very thin material rolled all the way down to between .004" and .014". These foils are in addition to a ready supply of all standard sizes up to .125" thick.

M. Vincent Now Offering 304V Stainless Steel Intermediate Sized Wire & 316 LVM, 6-4 ELI & MP35N Foil

304V Intermediate sized wire is typically used for medical devices such as vascular catheters and guidewires. The "V" stands for vacuum arc remelted, which is a process used to reduce impurities, making this alloy suitable for use in a variety of surgical procedures. It is also good metal to weld with and so can be combined with other medical grade alloys to make complete, durable surgical tools.

Working together with the Zapp Group in Schwerte, Germany, we are proud to offer high quality 304V off the shelf, or made to your specifications.

Another product we are excited to offer is medical grade foils. MP35N, 316 LVM Stainless Steel and 6-4 ELI Titanium have long been difficult, if not impossible, to find in thin sheet and foil. This is a breakthrough in the metal industries. We are now providing the opportunity to purchase these items and are amongst the few at this time to be able to say that. The 6-4 ELI can be purchased down to .004” thick, and the 316 LVM foil starts at .001”. These items are a breakthrough in the metal industry and for the medical market.