Home  >  Community  >  The eBay Outlook  >  How do you ID brass and bronze?

<< previous topic post new topic post reply next topic >>
posted on July 18, 2002 07:28:03 PM new
How do you tell the difference between brass and bronze? I see alot of e-bay listings for items stating brass/bronze. I assume the seller is not sure.

The reason I want to know is that I bought a beautiful pair of andirons at a great price. They were covered with soot (sp) and cobwebs.
I cleaned them and the color is not yellow brassy but not quite "bronzey" either.

There is currently a listing for the exact same andirons on e-bay. The seller states his are bronze.

How can I tell if mine are bronze, too?
Thanks, Lauren

posted on July 18, 2002 07:31:36 PM new
Normally this type of material is bronze as it is more tolerant to heat than brass.

posted on July 18, 2002 07:38:03 PM new
Thanks, Sanmar. Are there any tests "home tests" Like testing it with a magnet etc. that will tell if an item is bronze or brass?

posted on July 18, 2002 08:48:18 PM new
Not bronze or brass answer but brass or brass plating answer ...

from this site http://www.baltimorebrassworks.com/Brass_Facts.html

How can I tell the difference between solid brass and brass plating?

First, test with a magnet - a refrigerator magnet will do. Solid brass is not magnetic. If the magnet sticks, the item is usually steel or cast iron, with a brass plating. If the magnet does not stick, you can test further by scratching a hidden area with a sharp tool. If you see a shiny yellow scratch, the item is likely solid brass. If you see a silvery scratch, your piece is likely white metal (zinc). Iron, steel, and white metal can all be replated, in which case a lacquer is always applied to protect the plating.
How can I tell the difference between solid brass and brass plating ?

posted on July 18, 2002 09:44:52 PM new
I have done the scratch test and it is solid brass or bronze and a magnet does not stick.
Thanks, Lauren

posted on July 18, 2002 11:59:16 PM new
Here's the difference betwwen bronze and brass from the web page


Copper 61.0%; Tin 0.9%; Lead 0.20%; Zinc- Balance

Copper 78.0%; Tin 11.0%; Lead 9.0%; Zinc 1.0%; Nickel 2.0%

it appears that the only way to tell the difference between the two alloys is to use metallurgical tests

<< previous topic post new topic post reply next topic >>

Jump to

All content © 1998-2018  Vendio all rights reserved. Vendio Services, Inc.™, Simply Powerful eCommerce, Smart Services for Smart Sellers, Buy Anywhere. Sell Anywhere. Start Here.™ and The Complete Auction Management Solution™ are trademarks of Vendio. Auction slogans and artwork are copyrights © of their respective owners. Vendio accepts no liability for the views or information presented here.

The Vendio free online store builder is easy to use and includes a free shopping cart to help you can get started in minutes!