Assuming you have some bronze in amongst them then the bronzes are
likely to more red or copper like than the really yellow brasses.
Does it matter? Well bronze will be harder wearing (on steel)than brass
but for light domestic use then possibly not. Whilst you are at it make
2 bushes of whatever you have to hand then the first won't wear out
until you've lost the spare one!!
Similar to the recommendation from the days when airliners were being
bombed: it's safer to take your own bomb on board because the chance of
there being two on the same aircraft is negligible. ;-)
Brass is very much a yellow/gold colour while the bronzes tend to be
darker/redder. Gunmetal is in between....
The material spec also affects the perceived colouring, cast sticks/bars tend to
be duller while extruded/drawn bars are shinier, for want of a better
Peter & Rita Forbes
==Thanks to all for the info.
I used the piece which seemed to be the reddish-brownish-darkish-est,
and noted the chips. They varied between fine particles and flakes, but
on parting-off, they were distinct flakes, so I felt vaguely reassured
that it was a piece of bronze.
For your further information on brasses and bronze, bronze is a much
superior metal as far as wearing is concerned. From a decent cut the
swarf will usually curl like small springs which will be quite tough.
Be careful when reaming as the reamer may sieze unless there is a very
minimal amount to remove. Gunmetal has a slight goldish tinge. It
machines easily except for drilling where it may snatch in the drill
in. It is used for steam engine boiler parts as it does not "de-
zincify" due to steam and pressure. Phosfor Bronze is even tougher
than bronze and even darker in colour especially when it ozidises with
age, and correspondingly tougher to machine. Always use the sharpest
tools on all these metals as blunt tools will cause trouble. Hop[e
this is of help. Tom Oliver
Thank you for this information. I have stored it away for future use.
What is the best method of marking metal stock to indicate its material
and grade? Standard colour code? Stamping ID marks on butt end?
Personally, I think simple is best. I bought half a dozen small
tins of 'Humbrol' model enamel and invented my own colour code system. It
only takes a few seconds to dab material with a cotton bud dipped in the
It just needs a bit of discipline to remember to mark stuff as soon
as it arrives, and before I forget what I bought, and only to cut off from
the unpainted end!
From previous traffic on this subject, I think it was generally
concluded that there was no universal system anyway.
Chris Edwards (in deepest Dorset) "....there *must* be an easier way!"
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