What are your options for creating your metal parts? What’s your application? Does the part have to be strong, springy, corrosion-resistant or polished?
Well, your options are almost endless. When you scan the universe of materials it can seem very imposing until you break it all down step-by-step. Once you know what the end-resulting application is then you can start narrowing it down to what’s best.
When you need a spring contact, you have to decide which material properties are needed. Electricity flowing through the part might be needed to make something light up or run a small motor. What to do? Conductive and springy leads you to Beryllium Copper. Why? Obviously copper is a great conductor, but how can that be springy?
Just add a little Beryllium to that copper and now this alloy of two metals becomes a heat treatable material. That means putting the parts in a furnace for 2-3 hours at 600 degrees. This process makes the parts hard and springy so a battery will press against it and maintain great contact. Plate the part with a little nickel on the surfaces and you’ve got great corrosion resistance also.
Need a metal part that must be strong and yet light? Maybe it also needs to be colored red or blue or green? Where do you look? I know, how about Aluminum and one of its many alloys? It’s one-third the weight of stainless steel and if you pick a heat treatable grade like 6061 or 7075 then you can give it a lot of strength with help from a furnace and just the right time and temperature.
You’re riding in it every time you fly in an airplane. AND, if you need it to be pretty or corrosion-resistant then off you go to a plating company to get it anodized to the color of your choice.
Want to talk to an expert? Don’t hesitate to reach out.