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Handles welded to the top cover plate of a chemical-plant downcomer broke at the welds when the handles were used to lift the cover. The handles were fabricated of low-carbon steel rod; the cover was of type 502 stainless steel plate. The attachment welds were made with type 347 stainless steel filler metal to form a fillet between the handle and the cover. The structure was found to contain a zone of brittle martensite in the portion of the weld adjacent to the low-carbon steel handle; fracture had occurred in this zone. The brittle martensite layer in the weld...

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