Difference in Chain Grades

Not all chains are equal!

Chains are broken down into grades, which indicate the weight they are capable of holding before breaking.  The American Society of Testing & Materials (ASTM) has published safety standards and regulations for these chain grades.

There are 6 major chain grades:

Grade 30 Chain

  • Used for general purpose used for logging and load securement.
  • NEVER to be used for overhead lifting
  • Also known as proof coil - low strength chain.

Grade 43 Chain

  • Stronger than G30
  • Used in a variety of industries - farming, towing, marine...
  • NEVER to be used for overhead lifting
  • Also known as high test chain - G43 is usually available in several finishes

Grade 70 Chain

  • Used for tie-downs, mainly by truckers, logging, and towing.
  • Made from a higher strength, heat-treated carbon steel that has a load rating approximately 20 percent higher than Grade 43
  • NEVER to be used for overhead lifting
  • Also known as transport chain or trucker’s chain

Grade 80 Chain

  • Only Alloy GR80 chain is used for overhead lifting. NOTE THAT SOME GRADE 80 CHAIN IS NOT FOR OVERHEAD LIFTING - ONLY FOR TIE-DOWNS USES -   Always check with the manufacturer.
  • Made from high strength, heat treated alloy chain that can be used as a sling component for overhead lifting as well as heavy duty tow chain. 

Grade 100 Chain

  • Used for overhead lifting, construction, towing recovery work, and other rigging applications.
  • 25 percent stronger than a G80 chain
  • A high strength, heat treated alloy chain.

Grade 120 Chain

  • Used for overhead lifting
  • 50 percent stronger than G80 chain

No matter what chain is being used the NACM (National Association of Chain Manufacturers) says it is vital to regularly inspect your chains and hooks for any damage. 

Any alteration in a chain—from a small nick or crack to wear and tear from overuse—could affect its ability to function properly.

Chains used in harsher environments should be inspected more frequently.

Make sure to know your working loads and NEVER OVERLOAD. 



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