Why Choose Brass Railing for Outdoor Staircases

A two-story home would prove more functional and aesthetic if it has a well-installed outdoor staircase. Not only can this structural element provide immediate access to the higher floor, it can also add to the uniqueness of a home’s architecture. However, a staircase will not be complete without an exquisitely designed railing.


Generally, a railing serves as a support for anyone using the stairs. Depending on the type of material it is made of, it can also add to the visual appeal of the stairs as a whole. Many different materials can be used to make railings, including wood, metal, stone, and vinyl. Among all of them, metals, particularly the non-ferrous (that is, without iron) ones, are best for the outdoors.


Non-ferrous metals like brass are resistant to corrosion. No matter the weather condition, their strength and durability will not be affected. Brass is perfect for stair railings because it is both non-ferrous and of delicate features. The shiny yellowish color of this metal matches that of gold; in fact, some alloys of brass can hardly be distinguished from the latter.


If installed properly, brass railings can provide not just beauty but safety for stair users. The strength and hardness of certain brass alloys exceed those of popular metals. Added to its natural resistance to rusting, brass can last for as long as you live in your house. In some cases, it can even be recycled to be used for other applications.


Basic Considerations for Choosing Brass Extrusions

To meet the demands of different industries, metal companies make their brass extrusions in various shapes and sizes. While T-shapes, angles, channels, and the like have different applications, they more or less have the same design considerations that consumers need to take into account.


For examples, brass extrusions should have a uniform thickness in their internal and external walls. This is very important for two reasons: first, thickness determines the extrusion’s durability, and second, because discrepancies in thickness can result in a loose fit between the extrusion and the adjacent material. However, some extrusions can have different wall thicknesses for special reasons, like to provide additional durability by reducing the thickness at the extrusion’s center of gravity.


Each metal supplier has different thickness standards for brass components, but the minimum thickness should be 1/8”; a measure that comfortably strikes a balance between durability and malleability. Again, some extrusions can forego this measure depending on certain situations, such as when the consumer needs them to fit into irregularly-shaped materials, at which case the minimum should be 0.080”.


Both of these considerations determine the extrusion’s overall profile, which determines its stability and cost. The thicker or ‘more solid’ the extrusion, the cheaper and more stable it will be for application. Unfortunately, solid profile extrusions may not fit well into irregularly-shaped materials, like cylinders, which usually need hollow profile extrusions instead.

Brass 101: Uses and Advantages of Cartridge Brass

Brass, the alloy of copper and zinc, has many forms, depending on chemical properties and appearance. One of these is cartridge brass, otherwise known as 260 brass or 70/30 brass. With a distinct shiny, yellow color, cartridge brass is also sometimes referred to as yellow brass.

Musical instruments are the most common products made of cartridge brass. The material’s tonal quality and distinct appearance make the instruments pleasant to the ears and eyes. Brass sheet metals are also malleable and lightweight, which makes it both easily formed into the classic twisting parts of French horns, saxophones, and other wind instruments and easily carried during performances.

Aside from musical instruments, yellow brass is also wielded into a variety of home decors and implements. Due to the material’s workability, sculptors can conveniently and creatively form artwork, such as sculptures, trophies, and plaques. The preference for metallic accents in the home has also made brass plumbing fixtures a viable commodity. Not only does it give a rich feel to the home’s interior, but it is also resilient against the high temperatures encountered by heated plumbing wares.

260 brass is also a good electrical conductor, which is why it is used for plugs and lamp fittings. Brass locks, radiator tanks, and cartridge casings maximize the metal’s durability. Its versatility extends to resisting corrosion and surviving fires– both sought-after qualities for any product.

Malleability: A Boon to the Metal Industry

The malleability of metal has made it possible for manufacturers to produce metal sheets and the like. Common metals and their alloys such as iron, copper, steel, and bronze can be fabricated for various applications thanks to their ability to be deformed with compressive stress. As history shows, malleability is what made simple tools possible.


Malleability, however, isn’t an indicator of hardness. Titanium is harder than any common metal used in the industry, but it comes at the expense of its malleability; at room temperature, titanium will break easily. That’s why titanium frames and materials are a rarity in building and infrastructural construction.


Steel, on the other hand, isn’t as hard as titanium but it won’t break easily when hammered or rolled at room temperature. However, as with most metals, it needs to be exposed to energy to promote the rearrangement of its molecular structure. Heat is energy, and that’s why you have forges crafting tools.


The malleability of alloys like bronze, however, depends on how much of one metal is present in the alloy. Bronze, a combination of copper, tin, and other metals, is highly malleable, so it has to be smelted before it can be crafted into rods, bars, and sheets. Soon, these bronze raw materials will be casted and forged again to create machine parts and statues.

Why Brass Tubing Is Ideal for Home Use

Brass tubing is a common material used for many household fixtures such as curtain rods, stair railings, water pipes, and door handles. However, have you ever wondered why a lot of these fixtures employ brass as their main material?

For those unfamiliar, brass is created from the smelted combination of copper and zinc to form a metal alloy. It is malleable, meaning it can be easily formed to take on a particular shape according to its intended purpose. This makes it the ideal material to many craftsmen with varying tastes in their product size and figure.

People should also know that copper, the main ingredient in making brass, is impermeable and biostatic. To put it simply, contaminants cannot penetrate it, thus inhibiting the growth of harmful bacteria. Utensils and cookware like pots and pans are created from copper and brass because of that specific property. Some recipes are ideally done on copperware such as those that heavily involve fruits. Copperware assures maximum preservation of the fruits’ rich colors.

Brass tubing comes in round and square shapes. It won’t melt, burn, or give off toxic fumes that can endanger household members. It is probably the safest material to use in making household fixtures and other items. It’s also cost-effective and comes from natural and environment-friendly sources.

Fast Facts about Metal Extrusion

Essentially, metal extrusion is the process through which a piece, a long brass slab or rod, for instance, is forced into a shaping die with a similar albeit smaller cross-section, thus forming a new product or a larger piece out of the work. This is useful when creating various cross-sectional pieces for different applications like plumbing, roofing, or construction.


The great thing about metal extrusion is that it is capable of reshaping or reforming a solid metal object more than any other industrial forming processes. It is also commonly referred to as a semi-continuous manufacturing operation because it continues manufacturing the exact same dimension of cross-section as long as the work billet (the original metal) is fed to it.

Hot versus Cold

Extrusion processes can be classified into two. Hot extrusion uses extremely hot temperatures (typically 50 to 70 percent of the metal’s boiling point) and can produce materials for automotive parts, construction supplies, and aircraft parts. Cold extrusion, on the other hand uses, room temperature and can be used for applications like aluminum cans, gear blanks, and the like.

Direct versus Indirect

Direct extrusion is the process whereby a ram uses force to push the work billet into a forming die until it comes out the other end reshaped. The indirect process, meanwhile, uses a chamber that is completely closed off on one side, and instead of the ram pushing it, the billet moves to the opposite direction.

Creating Cars and Buildings with Brass Sheet Metal

Sheet metals have been an integral part of the automotive and the construction industry since the Industrial Revolution. The first set of cars, after the steam locomotive, were prominent for its brass fittings and body. Meanwhile, the most popular example of architecture that successfully used sheet metals is the Chrysler Building in New York, which was once considered the tallest structure on earth.

This material gained popularity among car builders and building architects as they provided them with the right amount of flexibility to be creative. One cannot imagine that a heavy material like iron would be used in a skyscraper or as something to build the body of a Formula One race car. Lighter and more manageable alloy like brass is an ideal material for a fast-moving car and a celebrated building.

Brass sheet metal is likewise a good choice for artists who want to create hollowed sculptures. The brass’ color also has a glimmer that rivals that of gold, thereby giving it an air of class and elegance.

Quality brass sheet metals have several other applications spanning a wide range of industries. However, it’s always good to see great craftsmanship and metalwork when the alloy is used in a permanent structure which people look up to or used in a fast-moving object that car racing fanatics admire from a distance.