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Characteristics of Brass

8/21/2013 5:46:15 PM | by Anonymous

Brass

Brass is a metal alloy which comprises mainly of copper and zinc. The basic brass contains 33% zinc and 67% copper approximately. It is one of the most popular types of metal because of its many uses. It contains characteristics which makes it the preferable material for various applications such as in producing musical instruments, home decorations and structures. The specific properties of brass can vary depending on the copper and zinc percentage as well as the other metal added to alloy. The amount of zinc is also responsible on the variation in color of brass. Zinc, when added on brass, causes it to get lighter and turn up to pale yellow. On the other hand, a brass with low zinc property becomes reddish which sometimes called red brass. Other metals added to brass include iron which adds strength to the alloy and antimony, arsenic and tin to make the brass corrosion resistant.

 

If you are able to live or visit a century old house, you will notice that a lot of home ornaments and structures are made from brass. The yellowish or golden accent of brass makes an object look antique. It instantly gives a classy appearance to any home equipped with brass furniture. Some of the furniture that makes use of brass is wall clock and picture frame as well as home structures such as door knobs, railings and light switches. As brass aged, patina forms around it bringing a more ancient look to an object. Some people prevent removing this patina to retain the antiquey look of the brass. Polished brass which natural finish had worn overtime is called antique brass. This type doesn’t reflect much light and has darker appearance. The US Navy Sailors even wear belts which buckles are made from brass so it won’t spark once scratched. The classy look of antique are preferred by some consumers that new products are made with antique brass finish.

 

Another great characteristic of brass is its being corrosion resistant. There is another reason why brass is widely used in manufacturing home structures and that is to make sure that they will last for a long time. The need for replacing them would take a while as compared to other metals that are susceptible to rust. An application where this quality of brass is of highly recognized is in plumbing. Pipes can easily corrode because of the liquid that flows into it. Installing pipes in homes and industries is a meticulous job so the pipes should be made from materials that are almost maintenance free.

 

Brass is also widely known for its good acoustic properties. Once hut or blown, it will vibrate emitting a good quality of sound. This is why we have now what we call brass instruments that include trombone, trumpet, cornet, tube, French horn, saxophone, euphonium, harmonica and tenor horn which are all made from brass. Heat exchangers and radiators are made from brass as well because of its being a good conductor of electricity and heat.

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