Copper beryllium has many desirable joining and plating characteristics. Because the alloy is used in precision applications, their surface cleanliness is a critical factor when plating wire or joining by bronzing, soldering, and welding. Any foreign substance, including grease, oil, paint, dirt, dust, and oxide must be removed before plating and joining operations are performed. Take the time to adequately clean these alloys because dirt is the most common problem that causes ineffective joining and plating wire. Even if you use straight and cut wire, you must clean your materials.
How should you clean beryllium copper wire?
First, you will want to remove any soils, such as grease or oil. It is typical to find these foreign substances during forming because of contaminates from oil-mist-laden atmospheres. Make sure to be exceptionally quick to clean sulfur-bearing lubricants. When left for an extended time, it can cause the alloy to stain. Many surface soils come from handling. Some of the most notorious offenders are oily work gloves and fingerprints.
In most situations, conventional cleaners will be more than enough for removing residue. Take the time to ensure solution concentrations are correct and that flow rates and temperature have the proper limits. You must always maintain the filtration system.
Copper alloys are known to tarnish and oxide when exposed to air. Tarnish will accelerate with the presence of high temperatures and moisture. Heat treatment typically causes oxidation. Keeping copper alloys clean and dry will help prevent this.