There are many aluminum alloys available and they often come in various tempers. Alloys are divided into classes, each with certain physical characteristics and properties that may or may not be suitable for the required use. Each alloy will anodize differently and this should be taken into consideration when selecting the appropriate aluminum alloy. Sapa produces aluminum in 6000 and 7000 series alloys, but some applications may require aluminum in other alloys we do not produce such as 1000, 3000, and 5000 series. This information relates to additional aluminum alloys not produced by Sapa.
The 3003 alloy is composed of aluminum, manganese and a tiny percentage of copper, and is a commonly used aluminum alloy. The addition of manganese makes this alloy about 20% stronger than commercially pure aluminum (1100). It is not heat-treatable but can be strengthened with hot or cold working.
The properties of 3003 aluminum include its light weight, moderate strength and excellent moisture resistance. It welds reasonably well with the proper equipment and is easy to machine, drill, shear and brake-form. Unlike 2024 alloy, 3003 offers good resistance from corrosion. However, it does not always provide the most consistent finish in anodized applications. 3003 alloy is suitable for architectural and outdoor applications as well in areas where foods or other corrosive chemicals are used.
Aluminum alloy 3003 is well-suited to ductwork, sheet metal work, fuel tanks, chemical equipment, spinning, forming and other applications that require medium strength. It is commonly used in truck beds, skinning frames, garage doors, mail boxes, tool boxes, gas tanks, fan blades, awning slats, siding and ornamental work. Other applications for 3003 alloy include cooking utensils, pressure vessels, refrigerator panels and ice cube trays. A common temper is H4, indicating that the alloy has been strain hardened and partially annealed. This increases the ease of drawing, spinning, welding and brazing.
It is important to choose the right alloy for the profile shape, application, mechanical treatment, the surface treatment, etc. At Sapa Extrusions, we solve this problem by providing a wide range of 6000 and 7000 series extruded aluminum products in standard and custom solid and hollow shapes, rod and bar products and seamless and structural pipe and tube, offering a wide selection of tempers to meet an extensive variety of applications. Producing both standard and customized chemistries, our unmatched manufacturing capabilities allow us to create uniform grain and microstructure with our advanced processing and heat-treating equipment.
Sapa Extrusions' design, application, engineering, manufacturing and marketing specialists are ready to assist you with aluminum solutions for unique applications, employing the latest technology for the design and manufacture of extrusion tooling, including CAD/CAM design. Sapa Extrusions’ engineers and metallurgists can provide everything you need to go from the drawing board to finished product.