Brass properties

21 January 2016 / By: rmmcia

Brass is an alloy composed mainly by copper and zinc, in approximate proportion of 60% of copper and 40% of zinc. Brass is a very versatile alloy as per its properties. When manufacturing our accessories and brass fittings we use brass of certified quality and under European regulations, such as EN 12165 CW617N, which is the one normally used for hot forging products.

Brass stands out for its multiple properties, like the following:

1/ Mechanical:

- suitable for surface treatments, it accepts well cold working deformation because it is rich in copper, making brass a ductile and malleable material, easily mouldable;
- excellent plasticity in hot forging, over 680ºC;
- resistant to erosion by friction, that’s why it is used in locksmith trade, automobile industry, pen’s ballpoint, etc. thanks to its good characteristics: minimal and maximal hardness between 80 and 170HB;
- 8,44 gr/cm3 density at a 20ºC temperature
- tensile strength (of tension) of approximately 350 N/mm2;
- do not produce sparks by mechanical impact, an atypical property in alloys, which turns brass into a very useful material for inflammable compounds’ equipments;

2/ Thermal:

- good thermal conductivity, of 119,4 W/m*K at 20ºC;
- excellent welding properties, for instance for brass fittings welded with tin to copper tube;
- unalterable neither with temperatures from -100ºC to 200ºC nor degraded by the light;
- brass’ fusion temperature (980ºC) is lower than iron’s, steels, bronze and pure copper. Brass pieces can be cast by:
      + sand moulds
      + metallic moulds
      + by gravity die casting
      + through injectors
      + lost wax smelting for complex geometries, such in jewellery

3/ Electrical:

- good electrical conductivity, of 0,158 MegaSiemens/cm at 20ºC;

4/ Chemical:

- resistant to corrosion, that’s the reason why it is used for taps and piping accessories for fluids, also in naval applications;

5/ Other:

- recyclable, its remains can be melt as many times as necessary without loss of properties;
- golden and shinny appearance, of special beauty, so used for ornament purposes.

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