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The Many Uses of Aluminium Extrusions

Jul 30, 2008
Designers and constructors prefer using aluminium extrusions for the many benefits it offers in both its manufacture and for its qualities, making them perfect for use in construction.

The process of making aluminium extrusions is a very economical means of creating parts with a constant cross section as designers can use them wherever required. It is expensive to fabricate different shapes by welding as each piece has to be welded, where there is no reduction in cost with volume. In fact, sometimes, using a welding jig is much more expensive than using an aluminium extrusion die used for creating the same shape.

Aluminium extrusions are cheap to manufacture

Roll forming dies are much more expensive to use than extrusion dies. In addition to this, it is not possible to use roll forming in structures where there is varying wall thickness. This is because its thickness remains constant even after bending.

If sand and permanent mould casting is used in construction, the resultant product has to undergo extensive finishing before being used. However in the case of aluminium extrusions, wrought structures are created that have close dimensional control.

Moreover, aluminium extrusion dies are cheap and cost about a few hundred dollars and are finished with less lead time than the forming and casting dies. Moreover, these dies cost thousands of dollars.

Aluminium extrusion machines are cheap to install

Another benefit of aluminium extrusions is that its extruder machines stores and maintains dies without any additional expenses on your side. Moreover, these long lasting dies can be installed in presses quickly, with nominal set up charges. Though it is possible to extrude all metals, aluminium is the most popular option for extrusion for its unique combination properties.

Aluminium extrusions are preferred in construction because it has a high strength to weight ratio. In fact, its weight is about a third of the weight of copper, steel or brass but it is equally strong.

It also exhibits corrosion resistance properties with the protection of its own thin and transparent oxide film. It is also possible to enhance the protective properties and color of aluminium with the help of chemical or electrochemical means.

Aluminums extrusions can be bonded with adhesives too

Aluminium extrusions are preferred in construction as they can easily be soldered, brazed, welded, fastened mechanically by stakin, nuts, bolts and rivets. They can also be bonded using adhesives if required.

Conventional equipment is sufficient to form and bend extruded shapes from aluminium extrusions. However the composition of the alloy, its temper, shape and wall thickness all factor in the minimum radii and other features of the resultant aluminium extrusion.

Aluminium extrusions are fine heat shields

When compared to copper weight wise, aluminium conducts twice the amount of electricity. However if you compare them based on size, aluminium can carry two-thirds the amount of electricity copper carries.

In addition to being a good conductor of electricity, aluminium is also a good heat conductor and reflector, making a wise choice in heat transfer applications. Aluminium extrusions are also great for using as a heat shield; as it is highly light reflective.
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