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Making Brass Struts From Scratch  Rate Topic 
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 Posted: Thu Dec 6th, 2018 11:24 pm
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Richard Daugird
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Somehow I lost a strut to my Eck tabfoot. I know finding a replacement will be tough, so I figured I'djust try to make some. While I'm at it, they will be brass; I know it's not "correct", but I think it will look good with the black and brass contrasts. Does brass need to be heated to bend it 180 degrees back over, on the part where it pinches the cage?

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 01:25 am
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Lane Shirey
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I’d anneal it before you bend it. Heat it to red hot with a torch and allow to air cool. .

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 02:20 am
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William Dunlap
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It's best to know the grade of brass you are using. Free machining brass will break at as little as 90 degrees depending on the thickness.
Some brass is specified for easy formability. These can easily bend 180 degrees.
It's basically a case of no good choice. Easily formable brass isn't really suitable for structural applications, but annealed machinable brass is actually softer.

Cheers,
Bill

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 03:01 pm
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Richard Daugird
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If I was doing steel, I'd heat it and bend while still hot. Brass, I should let it cool first? Doing a bit of research, seem like C260 has a good combination of formability and machineability.

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 06:57 pm
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William Dunlap
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The original struts were likely pressed in a industrial punch press machine. That work hardens the brass.
What we can accomplish in our home workshops would never be quite as strong.
If you use 260 brass and make the bends without breaking it, that would likely be as good as we could do.
I would try to form it without annealing it first to see how it goes. Heated brass whether formed hot or cold will be dead soft.
Cheers,
Bill

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 08:25 pm
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Chad Hunter
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Here is some good info on the different types of brass and I buy from there regular and have never had any problems and always fast shipping.

https://www.onlinemetals.com/productguides/brassguide.cfm

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 08:41 pm
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Richard Daugird
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Thanks Chad, that is exactly where I got my info!

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 Posted: Fri Dec 7th, 2018 09:35 pm
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William Dunlap
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That's not a full list by any means. There are dozens of variations of brass that range from near bronze to nickel silver.
I use a brass called Nu-gold for wings on some fans. it's dead soft from the start, but intended to mimic the look of gold and is used in jewelry making extensively.

I like it because it takes a shine and holds it much longer than the other grades of brass. Not good for structural pieces, though.

That list is helpful though, because the grades listed are the most commonly found from outlets like Online metals and McMaster-Carr.

When it comes to strength, bronze beats them all. If you can accept a reddish tint...

It was called the Bronze Age after all, not the Brass Age.....

Cheers,
Bill




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