Zinc Soldered Copper and Brass Radiators: Their Processing and Their Test Results
Copper and brass radiators have served the automobile industry for many years using traditional fabrication processes. Demand for newer and stronger radiators with lighter weight for the modern vehicles prompted investigation of alternate materials. Properties of zinc alloys and their compatibility with brass suggested these could be used for radiator manufacture. Many zinc alloy compositions were investigated in the initial studies, because a solder alloy has to have many positive attributes. The first screening studies evaluated the ability of the solder to spread over copper and brass surfaces, representing tube, fin, and header materials. The second most important feature was the melting range of the developed alloy. In order to retain the anneal resistance of the fin and temper in the tube it was desirable to have a zinc solder with a melting temperature at 800°F or less.