How Much is Brass and How is it Produced?(how do you strip chrome off of metal Adolph)
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What is Brass?
Brass is an alloy consisting mainly of copper and zinc. The amount of copper usually ranges from 55% to 95% by weight while the amount of zinc ranges from 5% to 45%. Changing the proportions of copper and zinc can create different types of brass with unique properties.
Common types of brass include:
- Yellow brass - Contains 67% copper and 33% zinc. The most common and inexpensive type of brass.
- Red brass - Contains 85% copper and 15% zinc. Has good corrosion resistance and is used for plumbing applications.
- Naval brass - Contains 60% copper, 39% zinc and 1% tin. Has excellent corrosion resistance. Used for ship propellers and marine hardware.
- Cartridge brass - Contains 70% copper and 30% zinc. Has good formability and hardness. Used for ammunition casings.
- High brass - Has over 65% copper content. Has high corrosion resistance and is used for kick plates and door handles.
Brass is highly malleable and can be formed into sheets, tubes, rods or wires. It has excellent acoustic properties so is used for musical instruments. The oxide layer that forms on brass gives it corrosion resistance. Brass also has antimicrobial properties which makes it useful for frequently touched surfaces. The gold-like color and shine make it popular for decorative purposes too.
How Much Does Brass Cost?
The price of brass depends on the type and form it is purchased in. Here are some typical price ranges:
- Brass scrap or sheet ranges from $1.50 to $3.50 per pound.
- Brass rods for machining cost around $5 to $10 per pound.
- Decorative brass for home fixtures costs about $15 to $30 per pound.
- Brass tubing costs around $4 to $8 per foot.
- Brass wire or braided brass cable costs $10 to $15 per pound.
Brass prices fluctuate daily based on the market prices of copper and zinc. During times of high demand or material shortages, brass prices tend to rise. The wide range of available brass alloys and product forms also contributes to the variation in pricing.
When purchasing brass, it's important to consider the alloy type and characteristics to ensure it's suitable for the intended application. Request certified material test reports from suppliers to guarantee the brass composition. Be sure to compare prices from multiple suppliers.
How is Brass Produced?
Brass is produced using these main steps:
1. Raw material preparation - Scrap brass is collected and sorted by alloy type. Virgin metals like copper cathode and zinc ingots are also used.
2. Melting and alloying - The copper and zinc are melted together in a furnace at around 900°C to form the brass alloy melt. The proportions of the metals are carefully controlled.
3. Pouring and casting - The molten brass can be poured into molds to form ingots, slabs, rods or other shapes. Continuous casting is also used to form long shapes.
4. Forming - The cast brass is heated and formed into sheets, tubes or wire through rolling, drawing and extruding processes. Annealing heat treatments help soften the brass for working.
5. Finishing - The brass is trimmed, straightened and polished to the final dimensions. Surface finishes and coatings can also be applied.
6. Inspection and testing - The finished product is inspected for defects and tested to ensure it meets the required mechanical properties and chemical composition standards.
7. Packaging and shipping - The finished brass is wrapped, packaged and shipped to customers. Proper handling prevents contamination or damage.
Major global brass producers include Hailiang Group, KME, Mueller Industries, Wieland, Ningbo Jintian and Tongling Nonferrous Metals Group. These companies mine raw copper and zinc ores, refine the metals and alloy, form and fabricate a diverse range of brass mill products.
Brass Continues to Thrive
Brass has been an important metal alloy for centuries thanks to its versatile properties and aesthetics. New brass compositions and manufacturing methods continue to extend its possibilities for both traditional and high-tech applications.
Despite fluctuations, brass remains competitively priced with other metals and is readily available through major global suppliers as well as metal recycling streams. Brass enjoys wide use for plumbing and hardware, instruments, ammunition, marine fittings, decor and more.
With further innovations in alloy development and processing, brass seems poised to maintain its prominence for future generations. Whether as a basic construction material or for precision parts, the brilliant allure and workability of brass endures. CNC Milling CNC Machining