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Thread: Which Brass to use?

  1. #1
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    Default Which Brass to use?

    This post is a followup to my earlier post about bending Brass (1/4" radius bends in 1/8" X 1 1/2" flat bar). The supplier I use offers two alloys-
    C360 and C385. Here is a link to their description:

    https://metalpress.onlinemetals.com/...ounds-squares/

    Based on this, I'm leaning towards the C385 architectural Brass- What say you?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Which Brass to use?

    I guess the real question is: What are you using it for? In a marine application I'd be inclined to go for the bronze as well, but if it's underwater or structural at all I'd research a stronger bronze. If it's just a wear strip of someting the architectural bronze is OK. If you're using it for chainplates, spreader brackets or something requiring some strength I'd say, "Keep Looking".

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Which Brass to use?

    Brass is not as forgiving to corrosion as is bronze and is a poor choice if one is seeking a metal that will hold up in a marine environment.
    In addition if the metal is to be used were it will be subjected to stress, it will eventually work harden and crack.
    Jay

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Which Brass to use?

    Or you could call McMaster-Carr and ask -- their sales staff is very knowledgeable, and they carry various alloys rated for flexibility, hardness, machining, etc.
    "The enemies of reason have a certain blind look."
    Doctor Jacquin to Lieutenant D'Hubert, in Ridley Scott's first major film _The Duellists_.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Which Brass to use?

    I don’t know what alloy it is, but I just installed this radar/light mast on my boat. It is just schedule 40 plumbing pipe in what I call bronze and the store calls red brass. It is guyed and braced such that there is very little stress on it which is why I wasn’t worried about the alloy. It’s been on the boat a couple of weeks and is already a lot darker color.

    7852649B-80BA-47C6-92C0-5E3F91CEBAE7.jpg

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Which Brass to use?

    Pretty much what Jay and Thorne said. While arguing with Jay is generally not a good idea, on account of him being right most of the time, I will take exception to blaming work hardening for cracking in service. While bending, yes, long term stress, no. Since the bottom line is cracking, not the details that lead to cracking, a cracking problem is a cracking problem.

    C36000 and C38500 are brasses with a high Zn content that is prone to dezincification, which is a much bigger problem under water and above. The OP's link does say that it has only fair resistance to weathering in marine environments, so not the best material. The limit for dezincification problems is 15%. Brasses or bronzes with less than 15% are not susceptible. Wrong thread; but according to the ASM Handbook Vol 2, cold forming either alloy is poor. Hot forming C360 (1300-1450F) is fair and C385 (1150-1350F) is excellent. Leaded alloys are hot short above 600F and below the forming temperature. Hot short is brittle when hot.

    no, not that Ron asked about red brass, which looks like the cast red brass here, C83600. C86300 is also called 85-5-5-5 which is the composition in percent Cu, Sn, Pb & Zn. Since it has less than 15% Zn, it is OK. Wrought red brass is C23000, which is 85% CU, 15% Zn. The machined red brass is C23000, which is 85 Cu, 15 Zn, right at the cusp for dezincification. I would have to go find Vol 13, to be sure, but I think it should be OK.
    Management is the art of counting beans. Leadership is the art of making every being count. --Joe Finch

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Which Brass to use?

    Hey Dave, I am only right some of the time.
    Jay

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