Stainless steel types 1.4301 and 1.4307 are also known as grades 304 and 304L respectively. Type 304 is the most versatile and widely used stainless steel. It is still sometimes referred to by its old name 18/8 which is derived from the nominal composition of type 304 being 18% chromium and 8% nickel.
Type 304 stainless steel is an austenitic grade that can be severely deep drawn. This property has resulted in 304 being the dominant grade used in applications like sinks and saucepans.
Type 304L is the low carbon version of 304. It is used in heavy gauge components for improved weldability. Some products such as plate and pipe may be available as “dual certified” material that meets the criteria for both 304 and 304L.