Both cast iron and steel are alloys of iron that include carbon; however, steel contains less carbon. According to Tata Steel Europe, steel is defined as an iron alloy that has a carbon content of less than 1%. Modern cast iron has a carbon content of between 2.4% and 4%, but historically that has varied widely due to technological difficulties with keeping the alloy mixture consistent.Know More
Cast iron is simpler and quicker to make than steel; it is also much more brittle. It is harder for a blacksmith to work into useful shapes because it is easy to break by hammering. The "cast" part of cast iron's name refers to this fact: it can most readily be formed into useful shapes by casting it in a mold rather than by working it after it has been removed from the forge.
Steel, on the other hand, is easier to work by hammering. Steel can also be hardened by heat rather than melting as cast iron does. It has greater tensile and compressive strength as well, making it superior to cast iron for bearing weight, as in making support columns for a building. Steel's carbon content is controlled by the addition of other elements, manganese and silicon. Steel is created by melting pig iron, a crude kind of cast iron, and removing some of the carbon content by adding these elements to the alloy mix.Learn more about Building Materials
Concrete is thinner, stronger and more durable than mortar; whereas mortar is used as a bonding agent between building materials, concrete is used for structural projects, such as beams or walls. The differing compositions of these materials makes them ideal for different purposes. Concrete and mortar are not used interchangeably without compromising the structural integrity of a building.Full Answer >
According to About.com, Sheetrock is a brand and is also a type of drywall; therefore, there is no difference between the two. By definition, drywall is "large, flat sheets of pressed gypsum that compose the inner walls of most residential buildings."Full Answer >
Although Plexiglass is a form of acrylic plastic, there are subtle differences between the two types. Plexiglass has the distinction of being harder than normal acrylic which makes it easier to drill and cut without breakage. Additionally, Plexiglass is more chemical resistant than traditional acrylic.Full Answer >
Plaster requires more steps to prepare than drywall and is more labor intensive to work with. It has a lot more flexibility of application than drywall, but is also more expensive. These differences are the reason why it costs more to have walls plastered than it does to install drywall.Full Answer >