Iron nails, cogs, screws and other fittings have been in use for generations, but as time passes, they're being phased out and stainless steel equivalents are becoming more and more popular. While many manufacturers have switched already, there are still some who have yet to make the change. If that applies to you, read on to learn a little more about the benefits of using stainless steel fittings over iron ones.
Stainless steel doesn't rust when exposed to the elements.
The reason stainless steel was given its name is that it's just that--stainless. Iron will rust, oxidise, warp, corrode and discolour over time, particularly if it is to be used outdoors and exposed to rain and humidity. Stainless steel, on the other hand, will look pretty much the same as it did the day you hammered it in for many years to come! This means that stainless steel fittings are a particularly great choice if your metal is going to be outside.
Stainless steel is a great deal less dense than iron.
Because stainless steel has a much lower density than iron does, a stainless steel bracket is going to be a great deal lighter than an otherwise identical iron one. This means that it's more versatile, can be used in a wider range of situations and is easier to transport--all of which are things that will keep costs down. These qualities also make stainless steel easier for an individual to use and install alone.
Stainless steel is almost entirely hypoallergenic.
Iron allergies are rare, but they do exist. More than that, many of the iron alloys in common usage (such as Invar, a mixture of iron and nickel used in many household appliances) contain other metals that are frequently found to be allergens. Stainless steel is a lot closer to being hypoallergenic and is suitable for use next to the skin or around animals.
Stainless steel can be shaped and designed however you like.
Iron is a beautiful metal with many attractive permutations--but it tends to look very much like iron no matter what you do with it, it really only 'works' in specific types of setting and it's difficult and expensive to customise. Just look at the price points of many wrought iron decorations! Stainless steel, on the other hand, is far more versatile and much easier to work. It can be coloured, carved, decorated and even 'wrought'--all for a fraction of the price.