1. Why use aluminum?
Why use aluminum in its extruded form?
Few commercial metals can be extruded in as wide a
variety of configurations with desirable combinations
of physical properties as can aluminum. Aluminum extrusions
provide a high strength-to-weight ratio, close tolerance,
ease of joining, seamless manufacturing, uniform quality,
excellent corrosion resistance, high electrical conductivity,
excellent thermal properties, sustained recyclability,
and suitability for a wide range of finishes.
2. How is the cost determined?
Production cost in aluminum material is concerned
with the dimension (size), quantity, wall thickness,
weight, alloy/temper, length, packing, classification
of shape (solid, semi-hollow or hollow), marking and
shipping quantity tolerance. When possible, follow
the design suggestions of the manufacturer to generate
the lowest production cost.
Can I save production costs by designing with aluminum
The tools required for aluminum extrusion - dies and
related elements - are relatively inexpensive compared
with those necessary for other production methods.
Initial investment may be quickly amortized and even
a fairly small production run may pass the "bread
even" point, thus economically justifying the
use of extrusion.
Why is the length such an important factor in determining
the price of extrusions?
The extrusion process is designed to be a combination
of heat, die and pressure, which forms an extruded
shape from an aluminum billet. The extruder's goal
is to increase recovery from the billet by reducing
scrap and obtaining the optimum amount of quality
extruded material from each push (cycle of the extrusion
press). Therefore potential cost savings exist when
extrusions are purchased in their know end-use lengths,
or length multiples, as the best means to reduce scrap
generated in the extrusion process.
How do I determine which is right aluminum alloy for
It is possible that several alloys and tempers would
be suitable for your part. Selection is usually made
on the basis of structural or fabrication requirements.
It's a good idea to look for the most economical alloy
among several that may be suitable to you specific
application. The choice of alloy is best arrived at
by consultation with your extruder.
I'm in the market for some extruded aluminum heat
sinks. Which alloy is best for this type of application?
The purpose of any heat sink material is the dissipation
of heat. Although all aluminum is capable of this,
the specific alloy 6063 works best, when all aspects
of aluminum in this application are considered. This
alloy finishes well, and is machinable to most user
needs. It is one of the most cost-effective alloys
for this purpose. This alloy's characteristics lend
themselves well to the sharp corners and tight spaces
of some heat sink designs.
What is the difference between a sulfuric acid anodize,
hard anodize, and conversion coating?
In the sulfuric acid anodizing process, the aluminum
workpiece is placed in an acid-based electrolyte.
An electric current is then passed through the part.
During theoxidation process, the workpiece is coated
with a hard, porous oxide layer. Organiccoatings or
dyes of various colors can thus be applied to the
aluminum outside surface.
The primary difference between the sulfuric acid anodize
and hard anodizing processes are the operating temperature
and the current density at which the process occurs.
Hard anodizing produces a heavier coating with better
wear properties than a sulfuric acid anodize.
The conversion coating, also know as chrome phosphate
or chrome oxide (yellow chrome), is a process that
treats the metal surface as a result of chemical attack
occurring when the metal is immersed in. or sprayed
with, various solutions. This finish provides protection
and good adhesion, but would typically be used as
a based for another final finish.
8. What advantages is
there to using an aluminum extrusion over an aluminum
The integrity of an extrusion is much more consistent
than that of a casting. Castings are inherently more
porous due to their manufacturing process, and this
results in more material used for structural applications.
In result, the aluminum extrusion is inexpensive(dies)
and take shorter time than casting manner. ¡@
Caiping Enterprise Co., Ltd. (In Taiwan)
1. Aluminum Extrusion Council(AEC) in U.S
2. The Aluminum Association in U.S