Basic Steel - Steel melted in a furnace with a basic bottom and lining and under a slag having a basic reaction. Most steel made in America is basic.

Bauxite - The principle ore of aluminum, present in nearly all earthly materials unavoidably present in most slags. Also used in the manufacturing of alumina refractories for withstanding extremely high temperatures.

Bend Test - A test commonly made by bending a cold sample of specified size through a specified circular angle. Bend tests provide an indication of the ductility of the sample.

Billet - A semi-finished rolled ingot of rectangular cross section or nearly so. In general, the term "billet" is used when the cross section ranges from 4 up to 36 sq.in., the width always being less than twice the thickness. Small sizes are usually classed as bars or "small billets." The term "bloom" is properly used when the cross section is greater than about 36 sq.in., though this distinction is not universally observed.

Black Annealing - A process of box annealing of sheets prior to tinning whereby a black oxide color is imparted to the surface of the product. ·

Blackplate - Cold reduced sheet steel ranging in width from over 12 in. to less than 32 in. and in gauge from 29 and lighter, in coils or cut lengths, and within the uniform Classification of Flat Rolled Carbon Steel Products.

Blast Furnace - A shaft furnace supplied with air blast, usually hot, for producing pig iron by smelting iron ore. The furnace is continuous in operation, the raw materials (iron ore, coke, and limestone) are charged at the top, and the molten pig iron and slag are collected at the bottom and are tapped out at intervals.

Blister – A defect in metal produced by gas bubbles either on or beneath the surface while the metal is hot or plastic. Very fine blisters are called pinhead or pepper blisters.

Bloom - See "Billet".

Blooming Mill - Mill used to reduce ingots to blooms, slabs, etc.

Blowhole - A hole produced during the solidification of metal by evolved gas which, in failing to escape, is held in the metal.

Blue Annealing - A process of annealing sheets after rolling. The sheets, if fairly heavy, are allowed to cool slowly after the hot rolling; if of lighter gauge, as is usually the case, they are passed singly through an open furnace for heating to the proper annealing temperature. As the name indicates, the sheets have a bluish-black appearance.

Blued Plate - Blackplate with the surface oxidized at a suitable temperature by steam or air to produce a blue color.

Blueing - A method of coating sheets with a thin, even film of bluish black oxide. The blued surface is obtained by exposure to an atmosphere of dry steam or air at a temperature of about 1000°F. Generally, this is done during box annealing.

Box Annealing - Softening steel by heating, usually at a sub-critical temperature, in a suitable closed metal box or pot to protect it from oxidation, employing a slow heating and cooling cycle; also called close annealing or pot annealing.

Bright Annealing - An annealing process usually carried out in a controlled furnace atmosphere so that surface oxidation is reduced to a minimum and the surface remains relatively bright.

Brinell Hardness Test - This test consists of forcing a ball of standard diameter into the specimen being tested under standard pressure and judging the hardness of the material by the amount of metal displaced.

Brittleness - Commonly attributed to the absorption of hydrogen, this is the brittleness induced in steel when it is pickled in a diluted solution of acid for the purpose of removing scale, or upon electroplating.

Burning - Heating steel to a temperature sufficiently close to the melting point to cause permanent injury. Such injury may be caused by the melting of the more fusible constituents, by the penetration of gases such as oxygen into the metal with consequent reactions, or perhaps by the segregation of elements already present in the metal