Concept

Tombac

Summary
Tombac, or tombak, is a brass alloy with high copper content and 5–20% zinc content. Tin, lead or arsenic may be added for colouration. It is a cheap malleable alloy mainly used for medals, ornament, decoration and some munitions. In older use, the term may apply to brass alloy with a zinc content as high as 28–35%. Etymology The term tombak is derived from tembaga, an Indonesian/Malay word of Javanese origin meaning copper. Tembaga entered Dutch usage concurrent with their colonisation of Indonesia. Likely, the term was used generically to describe Indonesian high-copper brass items, including gamelan gongs. It is one of the very few Indonesian loan words used in English or German. Common types
  • Modern CuZn15 (DIN: CuZn15 ; UNS: C23000 ; BS: CW 502L (CZ 102) ; ISO: CuZn15) - tombak with a gold colour, very good for cold forming, suitable for pressing, hammering, or embossing
  • modern CuZn12 (not standardized) - same characteristics
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