Copper’s unique benefits and properties make it a valuable material for a wide variety of applications. Copper has excellent electrical conductivity, high corrosion resistance, and is easy to machine. With copper CNC machining, precise copper parts can be produced quickly and with a high level of repeatability, ensuring each part meets strict requirements and specifications.
CNC Machining Copper Alloys
Copper is easily alloyed (combined) with other metals. While copper has excellent thermal and electrical conductivity, it is fairly soft and often needs to be strengthened for industrial applications. One of the most common copper alloys is beryllium copper (BeCu or CuBe), which contains 0.4 – 3.0% beryllium. CuBe grades can have strength as high as alloy steel, but are among the most expensive copper alloys. Their properties, however, make them a versatile and valuable material.
5 Properties of Copper Beryllium
- Strength – The strongest of any copper alloys, CuBe has a tensile strength of 200,000 psi, on par with many high-grade steel alloys. CuBe also maintains its strength at low temperatures.
- Hardness – CuBe’s versatile hardness is one of its most sought after characteristics. It can be softened or hardened by applying different heat treatments. Often referred to as spring copper, it can be heat treated to an impressive level of hardness after being shaped into springs and other complex shapes, while still maintaining its other beneficial characteristics (such as electrical conductivity and corrosion resistance).
- Electrical and thermal conductivity – Like other copper alloys, CuBe is an excellent conductor of electricity and heat. It is also non-sparking and non-magnetic, making it a popular choice for semiconductor components, electrical connectors and telecommunication parts.
- Machinability – CuBe is easy to CNC machine while it is soft, achieving complex shapes and designs. It is then heat-treated to the desired hardness for durable, dependable parts.
- Corrosion resistance – Copper and its alloys are naturally resistant to corrosion, making them a common choice for oil and gas equipment parts, automotive and aerospace components, electronic springs and connectors, undersea telecom parts, and marine equipment.
Precision Copper CNC Machining from Reading Plastic
As a high-end machine shop, Reading Plastic has been providing clients with precision CNC machining for over three decades. With state-of-the-art equipment and highly skilled machinists, we produce high-quality, dependable parts for nearly every industry. We’re known for achieving tight tolerances of +/- .001, multi-axis lathe work, fast cycle times and consistently accurate results. If you need skilled copper CNC machining, call us today at (610) 926-3245 or e-mail email@example.com.