It was James Joyce the Irish novelist who wrote; “A man’s errors are his portals of discovery.” However errors when buying aluminium profiles and aluminium sheets online can be expensive and are best avoided!
The intended use of the aluminium you are purchasing will determine to a large extent the importance of the care taken in making the right choices.
If the visual appearance of the aluminium is an important element in the decision making process, then please read on.
There are several different factors to take into account, depending on the type of aluminium being purchased. Aluminium angle, channel, flat bars, stair nosings, glazing channels, wallboard trims etc. all come within the aluminium profiles and extrusions category. It is these aluminium products that we are discussing today.
Here at Gooding Aluminium we specialise in supplying aluminium products for the architectural and interiors market. If your aluminium requirements include the look and feel of the metal then consider these points.
3 key factors
1. Selecting the most suitable aluminium alloy
Aluminium grade 6063 is a widely used general purpose alloy within the architectural sector. It is available in standard geometric shapes such as angle channel, tee, flat bar and also in specialised profiles, e.g. glazing channels, louvres, panel & board fixings, stair nosings, decorative trims etc.
Versatile 6063 alloy also has the potential for being rolled into rings and curves. It can be used in either the self-colour condition or with interactive surface finishes such as anodising or satin brushing.
The other commonly available alloy, 6082 is more suitable for general engineering and structural requirements, where additional strength rather than surface finish and flexibility is the main requirement.
2. Determining the quality of surface finish
Is the metal on offer commercial or architectural quality?
The term commercial quality is a ‘get out of jail clause’ as far as accepting responsibility for the surface condition of the metal; this term can also include material offcuts. Commercial quality aluminium has normally had minimal or no surface protection since manufacture. Sometimes this alloy will be oil or water stained (as a result of the heat treatment it has received at the factory). You should know that aluminium alloy, in its raw condition, has an excellent strength to weight ratio but its untreated surface is vulnerable to surface marking.
On the other hand, with architectural quality aluminium, utmost care is taken from the outset, by using suitable handling and packing methods to protect the surface from damage.
At Gooding Aluminium all incoming aluminium products are subject to rigorous inspection procedures before being carefully placed into suitable storage. Once an order is received, our warehouse personnel will ensure the aluminium profiles are tightly packed and supported onto either timber pallets or placed within heavy duty cardboard tubes to ensure adequate protection during transportation to the delivery address.
3. Surface finishing
Aluminium is normally available from stock in either mill (untreated) or anodised finish.
The natural anodised finish (on 6063 alloy) is normally selected where aesthetic considerations are paramount. The silky smooth appearance of anodised aluminium will usually be considered the most suitable effect for all sorts of decorative applications. This finishing process also hardens the aluminium’s surface making it more abrasion resistant.
Mill aluminium usually has a semi bright look with visible extrusion lines and various other markings . If there are no particular surface finish or added protection issues this untreated condition can often produce satisfactory results.
In summary therefore when buying aluminium profiles and extrusions consider these three points;
a. Grade of aluminium?
b. Quality of surface finish?
c. Type of surface finish?
When buying aluminium profiles and extrusions online from Gooding Aluminium you can be assured of high quality products and service standards.
For more information about aluminium products, visit our main site at www.goodingalum.com.