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Mechanical Testing
Its Bearing on the Working Properties of Aluminium and Aluminium Alloy Products

This article first appeared in the Volume 4, Number 50 (December, 1942) issue of Aircraft Production magazine, and is presented here through the kind permission of Flight International. Thanks also to Bruce Vander Mark for furnishing volumes of Aircraft Production for scanning.

This article was based upon a bulletin subsequently be issued by the Northern Aluminium Co., Ltd., which included tables on the mechanical properties of light alloy sheet, plate, extruded products and casting alloys.



The testing of materials, whether of a commercial or research nature, is conducted with the object of ascertaining data regarding their physical and mechanical properties, and it is nowadays regarded as a part of inspection procedure. Few firms would consider purchasing, or manufacturers selling, materials that have not been so tested.

The properties most generally checked in routine mechanical testing, placed as far as possible in order of importance, are tabulated below. It is perhaps an exaggeration to refer to the last two as routine mechanical test values, but they cannot be excluded since they are quite frequently taken upon some materials and are of undoubted value:
  1. Ultimate tensile stress.
  2. 0.1% proof stress.
  3. Percentage elongation on standard length.
  4. Percentage reduction of area.
  5. Hardness to penetration (of ball or diamond).
  6. Erichsen cupping test value.
  7. Bend test value.
  8. Shear stress.
  9. Notched bar impact value.

Values of ultimate tensile stress, 0.1% proof stress, percentage elongation and reduction of area are all obtained from a single test and may therefore be treated together.


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