Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Pipemaking, reedmaking & maintanence. Expert pipemakers are eager to answer your questions

Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Postby bob Salter » Fri Apr 13, 2012 12:22 pm

I have tried one or two random ones unsuccessfully. Is there a particular one that works well? CZ108? cz121? I aint buying any more until I find out!! :)

Thanks
Bob
bob Salter
 
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:35 am
Location: Scone, Perth
Full Name: Bob Salter

Re: Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Postby Richard Evans » Fri Apr 13, 2012 3:20 pm

bob Salter wrote:I have tried one or two random ones unsuccessfully. Is there a particular one that works well? CZ108? cz121? I aint buying any more until I find out!! :)

Thanks
Bob



CZ108 is good. CZ106 is easierto forge but harder to obtain. I buy 14SWG sheet (V close to 2mm thick) and cut it into strips on the bandsaw. I also use strip supplied by Barry and Julia, which I believe they had specially made. This is thicker and I use it for keys more than about 4" long. Because it is thicker it takes more working down before it will fit the slot. I don't know what grade it is, but it is good!
Most brass strip is CZ121 which is brittle, it cracks when you try to hammer it out.

More detail can be found here:
http://www.copperinfo.co.uk/alloys/bras ... -brass.pdf

Cheers
Richard
Richard Evans
 
Posts: 132
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 8:00 pm

Re: Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Postby Julia Say » Fri Apr 13, 2012 8:14 pm

Its CZ 106, the stuff we had a load made.

Plenty left!

Julia
Julia Say
 
Posts: 213
Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 7:52 am
Full Name: Julia Say

Re: Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Postby bob Salter » Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:40 pm

Thanks. After Richards post I ordered a square foot of 2.55 cz108 sheet. Could you possibly pm me with details of the cz106 please Julia, it will be interesting to see the difference.

Bob
bob Salter
 
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:35 am
Location: Scone, Perth
Full Name: Bob Salter

Re: Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Postby bob Salter » Fri Apr 27, 2012 3:18 pm

Im using an engineers ball pein hammer. Is there a better type and what is it?

Bob
bob Salter
 
Posts: 47
Joined: Thu Mar 15, 2012 1:35 am
Location: Scone, Perth
Full Name: Bob Salter

Re: Which alloy of brass for keymaking?

Postby Richard Evans » Sat Apr 28, 2012 10:32 am

I use a ball pein hammer. I have several in different weights, the most used one has a head about 3.5" long- don't know the actual weight.
I use the flat end first to create a basic wedge shape probably 6-7mm wide depending on the key. I find it's essential to hit vertically and with care so as not to squash the brass sideways. This is followed by using the round end of the hammer and I might do some more shaping with the big hammer held in a vice using the round end as the anvil . I generally don't anneal the strip for this process, I get better control if the metal is harder. If the key touch is to be bent sideways like high B, I anneal before bending.

My "anvil" is a slab of cast iron about a foot square and an inch thick. Of course you don't need this area (I didn't get it for the job) but the mass makes it very stable. I hold the strip in a machine vice (which is on the bench next to the cast iron slab) so that it doesn't wobble around.

When it goes right this is all very quick. If the first stage goes wrong it can be difficult to correct. I use long strips where possible so that if it goes wrong I can cut the end off and try again.

Cheers
Richard
Richard Evans
 
Posts: 132
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 8:00 pm


Return to Pipemaking

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests

cron