View Full Version : Braxing: Brass or bronze?

08-18-2001, 03:51 AM
There are hundreds of copper alloys.
The term "brass" or the term "bronze" is only an approximation.
there are probably a dozen "brasses", all with slightly different recipes.
Some have lead, some dont.
there are probably 50 things called "bronze".

There are plenty of "bronzes" with zinc in them- having zinc in a copper alloy does not make it brass, or make it NOT bronze.

As for your rod, I have absolutely no idea what the hell is in it- could be any of an infinite number of combinations of copper with varying degrees of zinc, lead, tin, silicon, aluminum, phosphorus, iron, zirconium, beryllium, sulfur, tellurium, nickel, silver, manganese, cadmium,chromium, or some other alloying ingredient.

If you want some alloy of bronze round bar, to use to make something, as opposed to using for a brazing rod, here are a few suppliers of bronze.
The most common alloys they are going to stock in round bar are usually these two:
C655, which is silicon bronze, which is mostly copper with a little silicon
C465, naval bronze, which is 60% or so copper with the rest zinc and silicon
Then you can get aluminum bronzes, and phosporus bronzes as well.
And freemachining brass, in leaded or unleaded varieties.

A good reference book is the ASM metals handbook, desk edition, which has breakdowns of the composition of a hundred or so of the more common copper alloys, along with recomendations on machinability, forgeability, etc.


Most of these guys will sell you a 12 footer, cut in half and shipped ups.

08-18-2001, 06:26 PM
Please educate me. I thought the differance betwen brass and bronze was that bronze was oil impregnated. If so how could you braze it?

03-02-2006, 02:32 PM
A package of brazing rods I have describe the contents in one sentence as "brass" and in the next as "bronze." The name on the package says brass/bronze.

Brass is a zinc-based alloy and bronzes are either tin, aluminum, or silicon-based.

So, besides copper, what is the base metal in that yellow-colored brazing rod?

This isn't a smart-alec question. I'm in need of some small diameter bronze, but the only size I can find is 1/2" diameter, and larger.

Thank you.


03-02-2006, 02:42 PM
Sorry for the typo. I meant the subject to say "Brazing..."


03-02-2006, 03:20 PM


they have bronze

Tin Falcon
03-02-2006, 03:29 PM
Your local welding supply should have silicon bronze rod designed for tig use in 1/16.

03-08-2006, 07:56 AM

03-08-2006, 08:19 AM
being bronze has nothing to do with oil. What you are thinking of is the sintered oil impregnated bearings like Oilite.

Bronze is a copper tin alloy and brass is copper zinc, more or less, but as Ries points out its not always that simple, there are lots of different recipes

03-08-2006, 09:14 AM