When you need to join two metal components of dissimilar metals, such as stainless steel and copper, you have a few different choices to consider. For most industrial applications soldering is out of the question as it is too time consuming and will not provide the strength found in brazing stainless steel to copper.
The other option to consider is welding. Typically when welding stainless steel to copper there will be several potential issues to deal with after the welding process is complete. This includes bulky welds at the joint that have to be machined afterwards, as well as the possibility of leaks at the weld and even weaker overall joints.
Choosing a Professional Company
When working with a top company providing services for brazing stainless steel to copper there is really little in the way of technical knowledge of the process that is required. However, it is important to note that the experience and expertise of the company handing the job will result in a higher or lower quality braze and overall part.
Not all company offering welding services also are experts at brazing stainless steel to copper, and they may not have the experience to be able to complete this exacting process to avoid damage to the metal components, particularly the copper, during the process.
Pre-work Prep and Processing
As with any type of processing, brazing stainless steel to copper needs to start with correctly preparing the components. Any oil, debris or other irregularities in the surface of either metal will result in poor capillary action of the filler metal, resulting a weak joint, or one with the potential to leak.
When there is complex or complicated shape or a need to handle several joints on the component, look for a company that can complete the process in one pass. This also takes additional experience to be able to maintain all elements of the process to ensure a strong final part that is perfectly uniform with each production.
During the process of brazing stainless steel to copper, the filler metal selected will melt at a temperature over 840° F, but it has to also be below the melting point of either copper or stainless. In addition, the process is completed in an atmosphere that is pure to eliminate the risk of oxidation.