Aluminum can be used in different applications and finds its way into numerous facets of our lives. In fact, they can be used in industrial, construction, automotive, and even in household applications. One of its most popular forms is aluminum sheets that are available in different gauges or thicknesses. In this article, we will delve into different gauges, their unique characteristics, and their applications in diverse industries and DIY projects.
What are gauge systems?
You might be thinking about how sheet metals are being measured. Gauges play an important role in measuring the thickness of aluminum sheets. We adhere to the United States’ gauge system representing a specific thickness. Here’s a brief overview:
16 Gauge: Approximately 0.0508 inches (1.29 millimeters)
10 Gauge: Approximately 0.1019 inches (2.59 millimeters)
11 Gauge: Approximately 0.0907 inches (2.30 millimeters)
22 Gauge: Approximately 0.0299 inches (0.76 millimeters)
8 Gauge: Approximately 0.1285 inches (4.11 millimeters)
6 Gauge: approximately 0.1620 inches (4.11 millimeters)
Different gauges of aluminum sheets
Now, let’s explore the unique qualities and applications of each size.
16 Gauge Aluminum Sheet
This gauge is moderately thick and sturdy, approximately 0.0508 inches or 1.29 millimeters. Most DIY enthusiasts and construction professionals choose this gauge due to its unique characteristics. They are popular for their balance of weight and strength. The ease of handling makes them a good choice and they are relatively easy to cut and shape and can help even with basic tools without needing a piece of specialized equipment. It is commonly used in roofing and siding for your home, interior designing like wall panels, or working in automotive and marine applications. When customizing vehicle components and crafting body panels, you will appreciate its versatility because of its lightweight yet robust nature that enhances fuel efficiency.
Therefore, if you are working on small or big DIY or construction projects, a hobbyist or a professional, and weights are your concern, this gauge is the best option for you due to providing a reliable foundation for your creative and structural creation.
7075 aluminum sheet belongs to Al-Zn-Mg-Cu superduralumin, which is a cold-treated forging alloy with high strength and hardness, far better than soft steel.
Due to the fine grain structure inside 7075 aluminum alloy, it has excellent deep drilling performance, enhanced wear resistance of tools, good mechanical properties, and anode reaction. It is one of the most potential alloys for commercial use.
10 Gauge Aluminum Sheet
This gauge is considerably thick and robust, approximately 0.1019 inches or 2.59 millimeters. This is considered a heavyweight in the world of metal sheets that brings durability. Suitable for heavy-duty applications that can withstand substantial loads and provide strength and support to your project. You can rely on this gauge if safety and performance are your concern.
However, due to its thickness, you have to use specialized equipment or tools when using this gauge, such as when cutting and shaping this gauge sheet of aluminum. This consideration is very important when planning to utilize it to achieve precision and safety during application.
Various sectors can use this gauge, such as in heavy-duty construction and structural projects, manufacturing of industrial equipment, automotive frame components, aircraft and aerospace applications, and military and defense applications. These are among industries that benefit from the strength and durability this gauge can offer.
1060 Aluminum Sheet/1060Aluminum Plate is pretty similar to 1050 aluminum alloy with more than 0.1% of aluminum by weight. 1060 aluminum sheet is noted for its excellent welding characteristics and formability by cold or hot working with commercial techniques.
It has vast applications, such as electric and chemical equipment, railroad tank cars, etc
11 Gauge Aluminum sheet
This gauge, approximately 0.0907 inches or 2.30 millimeters, is suitable for a wide array of applications. This versatility comes from its balanced blend of strength and workability. Just like 16 gauge, this gauge can easily be cut, bent, and formed to meet your specific demand.
Therefore, this gauge can be used by both DIY enthusiasts and professionals, such as in architectural and building facades companies, interior designers, HVAC ductworkers, working in automotive parts and panels, and marine and boat component operators.
1070 aluminum sheet/1070 aluminum plate is a pure aluminum alloy. It is a wrought alloy with high corrosion resistance and excellent brazing ability.
It is mainly used in general industrial components, building and construction, transport, electrical material, strips for ornaments, communication cables, and refrigerator and freezer cabinets.
22 Gauge Aluminum Sheet
22 gauge aluminum is a relatively thin and lightweight material, approximately 0.0299 inches or 0.76 millimeters. Slightly thicker than a sheet of paper, which makes it easy to work with.
Applicable for crafting and DIY projects, electrical enclosures, model buildings, decorative trim and accents, and even jewelry making. It is a popular choice for beginners and experienced professionals.
The brushed aluminum plate is a manufacturing process in which the aluminum plate is repeatedly scraped out of the line by sandpaper, and the process flow is mainly divided into three parts: de-esterification, sanding machine, and water washing.
In the aluminum drawing process, special film technology after the anodizing process can form a film layer containing the metal component on the surface of the aluminum plate, clearly showing each fine silk mark, and making a fine silky luster in the matte finish. More and more metal products of aluminum plate products use a metal wire drawing process to achieve a beautiful anti-erosion effect.
Mirror Finish/Reflective Aluminum Sheet refers to the aluminum plate that is treated by rolling, grinding, and other methods to make the surface of the plate mirror effect.
Mirror Finish/Reflective Aluminum Sheet is mainly used for lighting reflectors and lamp decoration, solar collector reflective materials, interior architectural decoration, exterior wall decoration, household electrical panels, electronic product enclosures, furniture kitchens, automotive interior and exterior decoration, signs, signs, bags, jewelry boxes, and other fields.
8 Gauge Aluminum Sheet
Considering its thickness of approximately 0.1285 inches or 4.11 millimeters, this 8 gauge aluminum sheet is relatively thicker than many other gauges, a heavy-duty option for aluminum sheets.
This gauge plays an important role in industrial machinery components, structural support elements, heavy equipment manufacturing, bridge construction, and architectural projects requiring significant load-bearing capacity.
2024 Aluminum Sheet/2024 Aluminum Plate is considered the “aircraft” alloy of its strength. It is the heat-treatable aluminum alloy with copper as the primary alloying element. It is malleable when in the fully soft, annealed temper and can be heat-treated to high strength levels after forming.
It is mainly used for applications in the aerospace industry, especially for aircraft fittings, structures, and hardware are some of the major applications.
6 Gauge Aluminum Sheet
If the 8 gauge is still not thick enough and robust, you can choose an 8 gauge aluminum sheet boasting a thickness of approximately 0.1620 inches or 4.11 millimeters. This material is intended for heavy-duty and industrial applications, setting a high standard for strength and durability. Due to its immense thickness, working with this gauge requires a need for specialized industrial tools or equipment for cutting, bending, and shaping to ensure precise fabrication while maintaining safety standards.
It can be used in various industries such as military and defense armor plating, heavy machinery and equipment manufacturing, bridge and infrastructure constructions, nuclear and energy sector applications, and any applications demanding maximum strength and load-bearing capacity.
This aluminum alloy is the first choice for lightweight aircraft and spacecraft, and aluminum is widely used in the aerospace industry. YK Aluminum supplies all aviation-grade alloys, such as 2024, 3003, 5052, 6061, 7050, 7075, and 7475.
Understanding gauges for different applications plays an important role in various projects. Whether you are working on a small or big project, even DIY creations, there’s a gauge aluminum sheet size tailored to meet your unique requirements.