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Thread: Aluminum question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
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    Portland/Vancouver/ Pacific NW
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    Default Aluminum question

    Hello,
    I was hoping someone could expound on a question I had about aluminum.

    I understand there are different ways to form aluminum. The ways that come to mind are casting, machining, forging, extrusion, welding, & cutting.

    Q: Are there other ways aluminum is formed?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    New Hampshire, USA
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    Default

    How about sintering powdered aluminum (maybe called MIM)?

  3. #3
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    I don't recall seeing sintered aluminum parts. The problem there is that if exposed to oxygen at all, even for a moment , it forms an oxide coating that will prevent sintering from working. If the powder is made in a vacuum and kept away from oxygen it will cold weld so readily that it can't be made to flow reliably into a mold. Also, aluminum powder is extremely flammable. If fine enough it will explode spontaneously if dispersed in air.

    Aluminum is also formed by hydroforming and by explosive forming. It can also be friction stir welded. Variations on explosive forming include underwater arc forming. It may also be vacuum deposited in thin layers. It is also formed by basic mechanical bending, stamping and rolling.
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  4. #4
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Evan
    I don't recall seeing sintered aluminum parts. .
    I thought that was how Lotus treat their engine bores.

  5. #5
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    Could be but I haven't heard of aluminum being used in powder metallurgy.
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  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
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    Don't forget "billet"

    Seriously there's also rolling, sheet and plate processes like development: fabrication, spinning, drawing, HER processing, spray and plasma deposition - um - I'm out of bullets. Come to think of it these ae mostly post inititial form processing as in ingot onto sheet or plate, then fab, spinning etc.

    Nope. Dry hole here.
    Last edited by Forrest Addy; 06-16-2011 at 05:21 AM.

  7. #7
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    Default

    And spinning!

  8. #8
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    Nov 2010
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    My favorite all time forming process is stamping. There is just something about seeing the giant presses slamming down that gets me going every time.
    "I am, and ever will be, a white-socks, pocket-protector, nerdy engineer -- born under the second law of thermodynamics, steeped in the steam tables, in love with free-body diagrams, transformed by Laplace, and propelled by compressible flow."

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    North Carolina
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    I like to crush Aluminum cans in my hand (manu-forming), or sometimes stomp them flat (pedi-forming).
    Gary


    Appearance is Everything...

  10. #10
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    Apr 2010
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    Spotsylvania, VA
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    I like to crush Aluminum cans in my hand (manu-forming), or sometimes stomp them flat (pedi-forming).
    How about cranial-forming?

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