Custom Aluminum Extrusions: The Sustainable Material Choice

custom-extrusionsThere are many advantages of using aluminum in your product design. Aluminum is a very natural material. In fact, it is the third most abundant element found in the earth’s crust. The only elements found more abundantly are oxygen and silicon. This makes aluminum the most abundant metal found in nature. Aluminum is also non-combustible, non-toxic and is environmentally friendly, even at high temperatures.

In additions to these great qualities, there are still more benefits of aluminum products in manufacturing. Unlike other metals, aluminum is 100 percent recyclable and holds a high scrap value despite the fact that over 70 percent of all the aluminum that has ever been produced is still in use in some way, shape or form today. Aluminum can be recycled over and over again, still retaining all of the same physical properties. This makes it perfect for custom aluminum extrusions, whether strength, durability and functionality count.

Facts About Aluminum
According to The Aluminum Association, a study that was conducted in 2011 revealed that the amount of energy that gets saved each year that would equal 70 million barrels of crude oil through the recycling of aluminum. In addition to energy, land used for landfills, water used for processing raw aluminum and CO2 greenhouse gas emissions are other advantages of using aluminum and recycling it in the United States. Approximately 2.4 million square meters of landfill space, over 45 million tons of water and 27 million tons of CO2 are all spared through the recycling of aluminum each year.

Aluminum Extrusion Design
The process that is used to create custom aluminum extrusions should be familiar to us all. Anyone who ever played with Play-Doh as a child and pressed the clay through the shape press has created an extrusion. Aluminum extrusion design involves the use of either a standard die to create tubes, bars, angles and rods, or a custom die, which can be created in an endless number of shapes, sizes and configurations.

The extrusion process involves taking an aluminum billet, which is in most cases a piece of recycled aluminum, and forming it into a shape by forcing it with extreme pressure through a profile or die. The aluminum extrusion design is achieved by creating a steel die that is strong enough to stand up to the pressure required to press the aluminum billet through the profile to create the desired shape. Parts, pieces, building components and other items can be created in simple or complex shapes by clients for use across many different industries.

Advantages of Using Aluminum
There are many benefits of aluminum products, but the most advantageous can be seen at the very beginning of the manufacturing process during extrusion. Standard and custom aluminum extrusions are very versatile and can be used in an endless number of ways. Aluminum is inherently easy to form, which is one of the reasons why it is preferable to steel, titanium and other metal materials. It can be extruded into just about any shape or custom design with complex, multiple void hollows, tight tolerances and even using thin-walled extrusions.

Consistency is another one of the advantages of using aluminum. Sophisticated designs can be created through aluminum extrusion design of custom dies and profiles to create integral building components. Secondary operations and finishing applications can be added to further customize the finished product, providing business owners and manufacturers with an endless array of options.

Fabrication is another area where you will see the benefits of aluminum products. The costs associated with secondary operations, such as cutting, machining, finishing, fabricating and assembly will be much less than with other materials due to the ease of use with this particular material. Aluminum extrusions can also be joined to other aluminum products and other materials using interlocking joints, snap joints, slide joints, as well as bolts, rivets, clips, soldering, welding and adhesives. Great for quick and easy assembly with other parts.

Common Uses of Custom Aluminum Extrusions
You might not know it, but aluminum extrusion design is all around you. It is found in windows and doors, structure pieces for sunrooms and enclosures, sun shades and blinds, skylights, store fronts, gates and fence posts, garages and carports, interior lighting grids, canopies, bridge decks and much more. One of the benefits of aluminum products is that they can be created in just about any shape or size and can be customized with a wide variety of colors, textures and finishes for a truly unique finished product.

To find out more about the advantages of using aluminum or to learn about aluminum extrusion design, visit our website or contact us directly about ordering custom aluminum extrusions. Silver City Aluminum is located in Taunton, Massachusetts, however we engineer, manufacture, fabricate, finish and deliver our products throughout the United States and all around the world. Give us a call today at 508-542-7200 or use our online form to place an order.