At EASIAHOME, we carry a selection of red metal, a term that refers to copper, brass and bronze. These three metals are similar because they all derive from copper, but they are actually quite different. Today we will discuss those differences.
Let’s start with copper. Along with having good strength and formability, copper is an
excellent electrical and thermal conductor, second only to silver in electrical conductivity. It can be soldered, polished and buffed to almost any desired texture and luster. Copper also has two other important attributes. It is corrosion-resistant and copper is found to kill more than 99.9% of bacteria within 2 hours of contact. Copper is mostly used in applications such as wire, electrical motors, and pots and pans.
Brass is a copper alloy that consists mainly of copper and the main alloying element zinc. Brass can have a varying color, ranging from red to yellow, and have different properties depending on the amount of zinc or other elements that are added.
Generally if the zinc content ranges from 32% to 39%, the brass will have increased hot working abilities, with limited cold working. If the brass contains over 39% zinc, it will have a higher strength, but lower ductility. Brass is commonly used fir decorative purposes due to its resemblance to gold. It is also used to make various musical instruments mainly due to its high workability and density.
Bronze is a copper alloy with the main element being tin, and contains various other elements such ad phosphorus, aluminium, manganese and much more. Bronze can be identified by its dull gold color, but also has faint rings on its surface which is a result of being centrifugal casted.
Bronze is primarily used for sculptures, metals and in industrial applications such as bushing and bearing because of its low meta-on-metal friction. Bronze also has many nautical applications because of its excellent corrosion resistance.
Hopefully this has given you a better idea of the differences between the main red metals: copper, brass and bronze.