Stacks of merchant bar quality in inventory at King Steel Corp.

Merchant Bar Quality Steel (MBQ) at King Steel

Merchant bar quality steel (MBQ) is a type of semi-finished steel used for non-critical applications. Generally, MBQ can be split into two categories: shapes, which include angles and C-shaped channels, and bars, which include flats and rounds. MBQ is also available in many grades, including A36 and A572GR60.

The type of MBQ that you need depends on the application in which you are using it for.


As mentioned earlier, merchant bar quality steel is primarily used for non-critical applications involving bending, forming, punching, and/or welding.

For example, square bars are known for their strength, easy weldability, and formability, which is why they’re commonly used in many residential and commercial applications. Comparatively, flat bars (both round-edged and sharp-edged) are heavily used in the steel fabrication industry as they are highly weldable and easy to cut.

General applications for MBQ include, but are not limited to:

  • Structural Support
  • Braces & Joists in Building & Bridge Construction
  • Support Frames
  • Railings
  • Transportation Equipment

Special Bar Quality (SBQ) Versus MBQ

Steel bars are also available in special bar quality, usually called SBQ. It’s important to note that special bar quality steel is not inherently better than merchant bar quality steel, and vice-versa. Again, choosing between SBQ and MBQ depends on your application and the level of quality required.

MBQ is heavily used in the commercial and residential construction, transportation, and agricultural industries. SBQ is also used in many industries but is generally reserved for high-load and/or high-speed applications requiring exceptional fatigue and stress tolerance.

Lastly, MBQ does not require the same specialized processing that SBQ does. Once MBQ goes through the standard fabrication process, it’s generally ready for use. SBQ may go through multiple processes based on what characteristics are required in the final product.

King Steel’s MBQ

As a global supplier of high-quality MBQ, King Steel offers a wide range of options for manufacturers and steel fabricators.
Our hot-rolled and cold-drawn MBQ steel is available in the following grades:

  • A36
  • A572 GR50
  • A529 GR50
  • A572 GR60
  • A615 GR75
  • F1554 GR36
  • F1554 GR55

We also produce MBQ steel in varying sizes and shapes, including round, flats, hex, square, round corned square, and more. Depending on your application, we also provide other value-added services, including machining and shot blasting.

Turn to King Steel for MBQ Steel Bars

Knowing whether MBQ or SBQ is needed in an application, as well as the specific grade and shape, requires help from an experienced metallurgist. If you still need help selecting the right steel for your application, reach out to King Steel.

Founded over 50 years ago, we’re a world-class, ISO-certified supplier of high-quality MBQ, SBQ, CFQ, AQ, and BQ steel, serving clients in all industries. Get in touch with one of our experts to learn more about our custom MBQ steel or request a quote today!