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Bronze is an alloy that consists primarily of copper with the addition of tin & sometime arsenic, phosphorus, aluminum, manganese, and silicon. All of these ingredients produce an alloy much harder than copper alone.

Bronze is of dull-gold color. The difference between bronze and brass is that bronze will have faint rings on its surface.

Bronze Applications

Bronze is used in the construction of sculptures, musical instruments and medals, and in industrial applications such as bushings and bearings, where its low metal on metal friction is an advantage. Bronze also has nautical applications because of its resistance to corrosion.

Bronze Alloys

Phosphor Bronze (or Tin Bronze)

Tin content ranging from 0.5% to 1.0%, and a phosphorous range of 0.01% to 0.35%. These alloys are notable for their toughness, strength, low coefficient of friction, high fatigue resistance, and fine grain.  The tin content increases the corrosion resistance and tensile strength, while the phosphorous content increases the wear resistance and stiffness. Some typical end uses for this product would be electrical products, bellows, springs, washers, corrosion resistant equipment.

Aluminum Bronze

This has an aluminum content range of 6% – 12%, an iron content of 6% (max), and a nickel content of 6% (max). These combined additives provide increased strength, combined with excellent resistance to corrosion and wear. This material is commonly used in the manufacturing of marine hardware, sleeve bearings and pumps or valves that handle corrosive fluids.

Silicon Bronze

This is an alloy that can cover both brass and bronze (red silicon brasses and red silicon bronzes). They typically contain 20% zinc and 6% silicon. Red brass has high strength and corrosion resistance and is commonly used for valve stems. Red bronze is very similar but it has lower concentrations of zinc. It is commonly used in the manufacturing of pump and valve components.

Nickel Brass (or Nickel Silver)

This is an alloy that contains copper, nickel and zinc. The nickel gives the material an almost silver appearance. This material has moderate strength and fairly good corrosion resistance. This material is typically used to make musical instruments, food and beverage equipment, optical equipment, and other items where the aesthetics are an important factor.

Copper Nickel (or Cupronickel)

This is an alloy that can contain anywhere from 2% to 30% nickel. This material has a very high corrosion-resistance and has thermal stability. This material also exhibits a very high tolerance to corrosion cracking under stress and oxidation in a steam or moist air environment. Higher nickel content in this material will have improved corrosion resistance in seawater, and resistance to marine biological fouling. This material is typically used in making electronic products, marine equipment, valves, pumps and ship hulls.

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