Brasses, alloys of copper and zinc, have a range of useful properties. Some brasses are very easy to machine (nominal: 58% copper, 4% lead and 38% zinc) and can offer overall part cost savings despite a higher raw material cost than steel, where significant or complex machining is needed. Cartridge brass (nominal: 70% copper, 30% zinc) has excellent ductility and is suitable for deep drawn components and those requiring severe cold forming.
For further details link to: Copper Development Association, Brass Information This site has useful documentation available on line.
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David Grieve, 8th January 2001, revised 8th September 2004.