The Use Of 6061 Aluminum And Its Properties

by | Jan 4, 2016 | Aluminum Supplier

One of the top general use aluminum alloys, 6061 aluminum is one of the most common options used in construction, manufacturing and all types of fabrication for a variety of different end products.

As with all aluminum alloys, 6061 aluminum is a good choice of materials for making custom or standard extrusions. It has a wide range of uses in different industries from the frames in aluminum fishing boats to the hulls and structural components of cargo ships and even naval ships. It is found in vehicles, including big truck frames, as well as in rail cars and for building bridges.

Additionally, as with many different aluminum alloys, it is used in both airplane construction as well as in the aerospace industry. As is evident from the uses it is a very strong yet lightweight aluminum, but it is also more workable and much easier to weld than other types of aluminum alloys.

The Properties to Consider

It has been mentioned that 6061 aluminum is easy to work with, which is largely a part of the composition of this alloy. It is made up of titanium, chromium, zinc, copper, iron and manganese, but by weight percentage the most common metals in the alloy are silicon and magnesium.

All 6061 aluminum is classed as a wrought alloy, which means that it is heated and formed into the desired plates, rods or square or flat bar. It is also a precipitation hardening aluminum alloy, which means that it is heated for a specific amount of time and then allowed to cool, removing the imperfections in the structure of the alloy and producing a stronger metal after the process is completed.

This is also important for welding considerations. After welding 6061 aluminum can be heat treated again to reverse any change in the aluminum at and around the location of the weld. This provides maximum strength, which is why it is considered a top general use alloy in such a range of applications.

Other Uses

In additions to airplanes, aerospace applications and in boats of all sizes, 6061 aluminum is used in air conditioning systems, heat-sinks and heat exchangers. It can also be used in the production of underwater equipment, such as SCUBA tanks, or in equipment exposed to extreme environmental conditions such as fuselage and wings of planes.

With high corrosion resistance, excellent strength to weight ratio, and a high degree of workability, 6061 aluminum is one of the most commonly used alloys today.

The use of 6061 aluminum makes it a very common aluminum for small and large orders to all industries. At Howard Precisions Metals, they carry a full inventory of 6061 aluminum, and you can learn more at

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