Solid Brass vs Tin Plated Terminals

Discussion in 'The Garage' started by indr, Nov 22, 2012.

  1. indr

    indr .

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    #1
  2. tbarstow

    tbarstow Two-wheelin' Fool

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    Lower electrical resistance than brass.
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  3. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    The way i understand it is that tin plated, or plated for that matter assuming it's plated with decent stuff
    Stands up to environments that corrode much better then straight up brass, which starts to get dull fast.

    This is why the bulk of connections on late model bikes are plated.
    #3
  4. CycleDoc59

    CycleDoc59 Wrench Rider

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    Yes; also the solid brass is weak and can loosen or break off easily. Poor
    choice for the motorcycle environment.
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  5. ragtoplvr

    ragtoplvr Long timer

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    Tin plated copper is much lower resistance than brass, which can be as bad as steel. For plug in connections tin is also preferred as it makes a better connection and does not pressure weld much. If you coat plug in connections with dielectric silicone, this will exclude oxygen and make a better connection. Rod
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  6. Pike Bishop

    Pike Bishop Pull Down the Ponzi.

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  7. Benesesso

    Benesesso Long timer

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    After a bit of corrosion, it's the conductivity/resistivity of the resulting oxide/sulfide/carbonate films that count.

    That's why we gotta keep those battery terminals clean. :1drink
    #7
  8. greywolf

    greywolf Unpaved road avoider

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    Brass oxidizes to a very poor conductor. Ask any model railroader old enough to have used brass rail.
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  9. Pike Bishop

    Pike Bishop Pull Down the Ponzi.

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    Well, I'll be darned...you're right. I remember that!
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  10. Bad Daddy

    Bad Daddy Been here awhile

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    I believe that Copper has 2.5 times the conductivity of brass.
    Copper, being an element is also more noble than brass, which
    contains zinc, a metal that will erode(corrode?) in the presence of salt.
    Tinned terminals are even more corrosion resistant. Couple that with tinned
    Copper wire, and you have a very reliable connection, after you crimp, then cover
    with dual wall heat shrink.
    FTZ connectors, Blue Sea Systems, and Ancor Wire are good sources of information.
    Especially Blue Sea Systems.

    BD
    #10
  11. Pike Bishop

    Pike Bishop Pull Down the Ponzi.

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    As a kid, I had a model train set with brass rails, and I remember that ... but nowadays I have a TIG/stick welding machine that has solid brass DINSE connectors, which sometimes need to carry 310A @ some low voltage (maybe 20-30V depending on arc length?).

    Considering the high currents and fairly low voltages, I wonder why they don't use something other than brass...
    #11
  12. Benesesso

    Benesesso Long timer

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    You're lucky it's not an older Hobart Mig welder. The high-current buss bars are freakin' aluminum. When copper/brass has some corrosion, the oxides/whatever will still have reasonably low resistance. Not so with alum. Al2O3 is a great insulator (think spark plugs), and as a connection resistance goes up so does the temperature.

    It might even be capable of burning a house/trailer down to the ground. :huh
    #12