Types of brushed aluminum sheets

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Types of brushed aluminum sheets
Brushed metal has a distinctive finish. (Brushed silver metallic background image by Ragnarocks from Fotolia.com)

Brushed metal is given its soft and distinctive appearance of fine lines running in the same direction by mechanical sanding. Metals commonly sold with a brushed finish include aluminium, stainless steel and nickel. Three popular types of brushed aluminium sheets are aluminium light brush, aluminium medium brush and brushed and anodised sheet.

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Aluminium Light Brush

Aluminium light brush is usually available in any size up to four- by eight-foot sheets. It complies with commercial grade AA3003H14 and ASTM-B209, a standard specification for aluminium and aluminium-alloy sheet and plate. ASTM International was formerly known as the American Society for Testing and Materials, a globally recognised leader in voluntary consensus standards. Aluminium light brush is commercial grade aluminium which is easy to cut, drill and form. It has the alloy and temper designation 3003-H14. The four-digit code "3003" refers to the alloy, or the combination of metals used in the manufacturing process. The "H14" indicates the temper designation, or the hardness of the sheet. "H1" means the metal was strain hardened without thermal treatment. In other words, it is made stronger by cold forming. The second digit indicates the degree of hardness, from 1/4 hard to full hard. The "4" means 1/2 hard.

Aluminium Medium Brush

Aluminium medium brush is the most widely used brushed aluminium sheet. They sell it in any size up to four- by ten-foot sheets. It is easy to cut with a circular saw or jigsaw fitted with a fine tooth blade designed to cut metal and is also easy to drill and form. It complies with commercial grade AA3003H14. It is available in the following thicknesses, in inches: 0.025, 0.040, 0.063, 0.090, 0.125 and 0.250.

Brushed and Anodized

As well as having a brushed appearance, brushed and anodised aluminium has a clear, anodised finish that eliminates fingerprints and stains. Metal has a natural oxide layer on the surface that protects the material and anodising is a process that increases the thickness of this layer. Brushed and anodised aluminium is usually available in any size up to four- by ten-foot sheets. It is easy to cut, drill and form. It is categorised as AA 5005, which is a wrought aluminium alloy, consisting of 99.2% aluminium and 0.8% magnesium. It is usually available in thicknesses of 0.032 inches and 0.040 inches.

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