View Full Version : Aluminum Bronze

05-28-2012, 03:42 PM
Yiikes!!! I picked up a piece of aluminum bronze at a steam engine show some years ago. I am making a small stem engine now and thought I would use a piece of it to make the bearings. It milled great and I got all four sides done then went to cut off a hunk with the band saw and....WoW.. That stuff is too hard to continue. Any clue? I am not a metalurgist but OMG that is hard stuff! Fred

John Stevenson
05-28-2012, 03:46 PM
Wait until you try reaming it or tapping it.............

05-28-2012, 04:01 PM
I know what you mean. I have a hunk of that which I tried to cut- what a frustrating experience. I leave it on my bench as a reminder to carefully consider the properties of any material I would want to work with.

05-28-2012, 04:07 PM
Use Castrol's Moly Dee cutting fluid, works very well on aluminum bronze.

Spin Doctor
05-28-2012, 04:08 PM
Yes, it can be some fun stuff to work with. But I have found that some alloys are worse than others. At one time we used mostly Ampco 14 and 21. I'm not sure of the make up of Ampco 14 but Ampco 21 is listed on Ampco's web page. Each had it's "issues". In later years we used Ampco 18 and I found it actually quite reasonable to work with. Certainly no worse than A2 or A6. We actually had parts cast out of it t reduce machining time.


05-28-2012, 04:32 PM
Thanks to all! Glad I abandoned the attempt. The piece was also to be tapped 4-40 ( Thanks John ) I feel less guilty now. I try to use up the scrap I have accumulated before buying stuuf especially on line. Shipping is a killer for a a hobbyist. Thanks to all! Thought I was nuts! Fred