The most predominant alloy used for aluminum extrusions is the 6xxx series.
6xxx series aluminum alloys are used across a wide variety of end use applications, including transportation applications with structural requirements to architectural projects with high surface finish requirements.
There is a 6xxx series alloy variant for most extruded profile end uses.
What is it about alloys from this series that make them so fitting for these types of projects? To understand series classification, you must first understand the science of an aluminum alloy.
An alloy is a mixture of metals. In the case of aluminum alloys, the mixture is typically 90-96% aluminum, with the remaining percentage filled by other elements, such as silicon. The beauty of alloys is that the interaction between aluminum and the added elements enhances the properties of aluminum (e.g., an alloy mixture may increase the strength of aluminum).
Alloy mixtures are classified into a series according to their unique characteristics. The qualifying criteria for the 6xxx series of aluminum alloys is the inclusion of magnesium and silicon in the mixture. Magnesium and silicon combine within the mix to form magnesium silicide.
The salient characteristics of 6xxx alloys are their extrudability, strength to withstand heat treatment, and exceptional corrosion resistance. The alloys in this series also have a great surface finish.
6xxx series aluminum alloys are ideal for architectural projects like bridge construction and repair, and other projects that will be repeatedly exposed to the elements given their resistance to atmospheric corrosion.
The corrosion resistance and surface finish also make 6xxx alloys ideal for framing windows and doors.
The 6xxx series is used widely for other applications, including consumer goods, piping and tubing, and electrical components.
National Material L.P. (NMLP), Taber Extrusions’ parent company, provides a variety of engineered metal products including aluminum extrusion and steel to the automotive, aerospace, construction, defense, electrical, and industrial markets. Taber’s partner National Material Company, has been steadily growing their facilities and capabilities for over 50 years.
National Material Company (NMC) leads the industry in flat rolled steel and specializes in exceptional supply-chain management. The company’s supply-chain management leadership helps customers enjoy the benefits of reduced costs and improved quality.
NMC is highly focused on enhancing their Advanced High Strength Steel (AHSS) capabilities and services. AHSS benefits many industries including rail transport, energy, infrastructure, shipbuilding, and aerospace.
National Material of Mexico recently expanded their Monterrey facility to include an AHSS Slitting Line. The new equipment can slit steel with tensile strength up to 1725 MPa. The Line, manufactured by Red Bud Industries, Inc., can handle material from 0.007″ thickness, with cut-to-length and leveling capabilities up to 72″ wide.
All NMLP companies are dedicated to continuous improvement in order to meet the changing needs of customers. Exceptional quality, customer service and partnerships are to be expected from all NMLP companies, including Taber Extrusions, NMC, and NMM.