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Zinc for Diecasting
Zinc (Zn) alloy die castings offer a broad range of excellent physical and mechanical properties, castability, and finishing characteristics. Thinner sections can be die cast in zinc alloy than in any of the commonly used die casting alloys. Zinc alloy generally allows for greater variation in section design and for the maintenance of closer dimensional tolerances. The impact strength of zinc components is higher than other die casting alloys, with the exception of brass. Due to the lower pressures and temperatures under which zinc alloy is die cast, die life is significantly lengthened and die maintenance minimized.
Zinc #3 is the most widely used zinc alloy in North America, offering the best combination of mechanical properties, castability, and economics. It can produce castings with intricate detail and excellent surface finish at high production rates. [The other alloys in the Zamak group are slightly more expensive and are used only where their specific properties are required.]
The machining qualities for zinc are considered very good. In many applications, zinc alloy die castings are used without any applied surface finish or treatment.
Painting, chromating, phosphate coating and chrome plating can be used for decorative finishes. Painting, chromating (Iridite / Alodine), and anodizing coatings can be used as corrosion barriers. Hard chrome plating can be used to improve wear resistance. The bright chrome plating characteristics of Zinc make it a prevailing choice for hardware applications.
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Note: Impact Strength is the ability to resist shock, measured by a testing machine and expressed in foot pounds.
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Last updated February 24, 2008