Metal Calculators 101 – A Complete Guide for Beginners & Experts

A metal calculator is an interactive tool you can use to perform mathematical functions on various parameters about metals. These calculators come in different forms, with the ability to calculate different metal parameters.

This guide explores various aspects of metal calculators, how they work, and why they are important – keep reading to learn more.

Formula for Metal Weight Calculation

Whether you are using the online weight calculator for steel or any other metal, the formula remains the same. The online script or tools available online are designed based on this basic principle.

Fundamentally, the metal conversion calculators work based on this simple formula. From the above, you will realize that the units of weight of metal are kg.m/s2. However, this kg.m/s2 is equivalent to newton (N), which is the SI unit for weight.

From the above equation for calculating metal weight, you could be asking how we calculate mass. The formula for calculating metal mass is:

Where we have a density as kilogram per cubic meter kg/m3 and volume as cubic meter (m3).

Ideally, all the metal weight calculator apps you will come across online are designed based on these fundamental equations.

At the same time, whichever metal conversion calculator you intend to use there are some values needed to get an estimated weight of metals. In most cases, metal manufacturers have reference metal weight charts for their products.

To put this into perspective, let’s look at some common online metal calculators:

Steel Weight Metal Calculator

Although we shall focus on steel weight metal calculator, it is important to note that you can use it for other materials such as:

  • Stainless steel weight calculation
  • Aluminum weight calculation
  • Copper weight calculation, among other metals

Usually, these metal calculators have a drop-down menu where you will choose the metal you wish to determine its weight. Depending on the version of the metal weight calculator, it may have the main materials or different alloys.

In most cases, companies selling metal offer these online calculators. Through the metal weight calculation, they can estimate the quantity of material you intend to purchase.

Sample Metal Weight Calculator
Sample metal weight calculator

From this metal weight calculation, although the default is steel, you can choose any other material. For purposes of illustration, let’s choose aluminum 3003.

Furthermore, more advanced metal calculators will also allow you to choose the shape or type of material. Therefore, it allows you to choose a steel bar weight calculator, steel tube weight calculator, or any other configuration. From Figure 1, we have a round shape as the default setting.

However, for purposes of illustration, we shall try square aluminum 3003.

Material Type and Shape
Material Type and Shape

In addition to the above information, you will also specify:

  • Width
  • Length
  • Diameter for circular or round cross-section
  • Thickness for square, plate, or hexagonal cross-section

Ideally, once you specify the exact shape of your material, the metal weight calculator will automatically configure these parameters. At the same time, you must specify the units of measurement which can be in inches, feet, meters, etc.

After feeding all parameters, click on calculate to get the results. At times, you can get a steel weight calculator in kg, or lbs.

In short, you can use this material weight calculator to get estimates. These values are not 100% accurate. Still, this online metal calculator is a resourceful tool you need when buying metal products.

Reasons for Metal Weight Calculation

Knowing the exact weight of the metal you intend to handle or buy is critical in many aspects such as:

  • Determining the cost of metals – for instance, you will find stainless steel price per kg or pound
  • By knowing the metal weight, you will choose a suitable lifting machine or equipment. Additionally, you can decide the mode of transportation
  • Metal weight determines the shipping and transportation costs

With this knowledge, let’s move further to explore other fundamental aspects of metal calculators:

Calculating Cross-Section Area of Metal

Metals come in different cross-section areas. The best part, you can configure the online calculators depending on the material cross-section.

Simply select the type of cross section enter appropriate values, then calculate. However, the working principle here is based on the following formula:

  • Rectangle cross-section –
  • Square cross-section –
  • Round or circular cross-section –

Of course, complex cross-sections such as hexagonal, spherical, or other irregular cross-sections may require special formulas.

Determining Metal Length

In most cases, you will measure the length of the metal. Simply use appropriate tools such as a tape measure to determine the length. Of course, you must use appropriate measurement units such as meters or inches.

Calculating Density of Metals

Although most metal manufacturers provide density charts, at times, you may decide to calculate the metal density. In such situations, you must know the metal’s mass and volume.

Well, you can use the formula:

Alternatively, you can use the online calculators to determine metal density:

Metal Density
Metal Density

Additional Features in Metal Calculators

At times, you may wish to convert certain measurement units in the metal industry. For instance, you may wish to convert:

  • Inches to millimeters
  • Metric tons to pounds
  • Kilograms to pounds, etc.

An online metal calculator provides a simple and effective way to handle such conversions. Furthermore, a robust calculator may offer more options such as calculating other parameters in the:

  • Metal plates
  • Hollow structures
  • Metal angles
  • Beams
  • Metal channels, etc.


Although there are many metal calculators available online, these tools will give an estimate of weight, density, or any other variables you wish to determine. Whenever you are buying metal products, always contact your supplier for accurate quotations.

At Tuolian, we will help you get high-quality stainless steel for your industry – contact us now.

One Stop Stainless Steel Supply.

Whether you need stainless steel materials for your business or fabrication projects, TuoLian is your best supplier. You can find all types, grades, and thicknesses based on your needs. Guaranteed that we provide the best quality at a reasonable cost.
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