I called a metal supplier near Pittsburgh earlier today about buying a 36" x 24" plate of steel to use as the top for a section of a work bench we are building into my son's new garage. I intend to inset the plate into the table-top where it will be the "welding table"

I know know next to nothing about alloys of steel or it's finishing. I told that to the sales person, I was at his mercy right from the start.

I told him what my intended use was and the thicknesses I was interested in; 24"x36"and prices for both 0.375 (3/8") and 0.50" (1/2"). He suggested Hot Rolled A-36 steel.

i was given prices of $109 for the 3/8" stuff and $149 for the half inch. There will also be a $20 cut fee added to either one and state sales tax of course.

I'd like to hear tour opninion on mt choice in size and thickness of the plate keeping in mind that the plate is just part of the larger work bench which is 14 feet long and 32" wide. I'd also like to hear your opninion on the salesman's recommendation for the hot rolled A-36 steel.

anything you have to say will be of great interest to me and might help out a few others as well.