A Complete Guide to Architectural Sheet Metal

As a leading metal finishing company, our team at Polished Metals has supplied high-quality architectural sheet metal for use in a wide range of projects. These projects have ranged from small structures and facades to towering skyscrapers, giving our team a wide range of experience in working with these products.

Whether you’re designing a building or ready to execute on a major construction project, chances are architectural sheet metal will play a significant role. So to help in the planning process, we’ve put together a complete guide on this product, common use cases, and the best metals to use for architectural projects. Let’s get started!

What Is Architectural Sheet Metal?

To start, let’s break down this product. Architectural sheet metal refers to metal sheets fabricated specifically for use in building projects. Whether indoors or outdoors, these products are designed to be versatile in both functionality and appearance, often protecting buildings from the elements while adding a sleek, modern look.

While other products may be used in architectural projects, sheet metal is among the most common.

Use Cases for Architectural Sheet Metal

Finished sheet metal is commonly used across all architectural projects. A highly versatile product, sheet metal may be used for both exterior and interior features. For example:

  • Exterior cladding, including anti-vandalism cladding
  • Flashing and roofing
  • Storefronts, facades, and entryways
  • Marquees and other signage
  • Elevator parts, especially elevator interiors for wall and ceiling panels
  • Interior design, including wall and ceiling panels

Sheet metal is ideally suited to architectural projects for both the contemporary appearance it lends and for the practical benefits, including protection against damage and corrosion. 

Architectural Sheet Metal: Common Metal Types

Nearly all non-ferrous metals see use in architectural projects, but some are more frequently used than others. Some of the most common are architectural bronze, aluminum, stainless steel, and copper, as well as Muntz metal or naval brass for buildings located near the coast.

Stainless Steel

Perhaps the most common architectural sheet metal, stainless steel sees frequent use industrywide. Available in multiple different compositions, stainless steel can be customized to meet the needs of almost any architectural project. Durable, strong, and long-lasting, stainless steel is a popular choice for architectural use cases.

Architectural Bronze

As its name implies, architectural bronze is highly favored in the architectural industry for both its reddish appearance and its performance. More properly called 385 brass, architectural bronze is a copper alloy that includes zinc, lead, and often trace amounts of iron or other metals. 

Its composition makes it affordable among red metals, yet durable and corrosion-resistant. This combination of qualities makes it an ideal choice for large-scale architectural projects.


Aluminum is a staple of the architectural industry. Highly resistant to corrosion, lightweight, and more affordable than many other metals, aluminum is among the most versatile metals, with supreme malleability that also makes it ideal for shaped metal products. Aluminum is commonly used in high volumes for building facades, walls and doors, metal siding and flashing, and sheet metal roofs. 


Copper is a metal that can truly stand the test of time—while looking even better than before. Though pricier than other metals, finished copper offers both a unique look and desirable qualities that can’t be beat—including supreme resistance to corrosion and temperature changes. Architectural copper can most commonly be seen in roofing systems, flashings and copings, cladding, and various decorative design elements.

Muntz Metal and Naval Brass

Particularly for marine buildings and coastal projects, Muntz and naval brass may also be used as architectural sheet metal. These metals are specifically designed to withstand corrosion from seawater and other brine-like solutions with high salinity. 

Polished Metals Has the Architectural Sheet Metal You Need

At Polished Metals, we’re known throughout the world for our best-in-class metal finishing services. Our expansive inventory includes a broad selection of metal types, and all of our metal offerings are available as high-quality polished sheets to meet the demands of the architectural industry. 

With our 50,000 square foot in-house metal polishing facility, we have the bandwidth, space, and equipment to meet the needs of even the most demanding architectural metal finishing projects. Contact our team today to request a quote for your project!