here is a little aluminum info on types.
Aluminum in its pure form is a relatively soft metal which has many uses, but which requires the addition of an alloy or alloys to increase its strength and to add other qualities suitable for different applications. Common alloys are: copper, magnesium, silicon, manganese, and zinc. They are identified by their series numbers:
Series Alloy group
1xxx 99% minimum aluminum purity
Q: How do I determine which filler metal to use?
A: While filler metal for steel is typically chosen by matching the tensile strengths, strength is only one of the considerations when choosing an aluminum filler metal. Usually several different aluminum alloy filler metals can be used with any of the aluminum alloy base metals or when welding dissimilar alloys together. In choosing the filler metal, consideration is given to
* Base metal composition
* Ease of welding
* Joint design
* Dilution (when the filler wire and base metal combine in the weld puddle to create a different chemical make up in the weld)
* Strength of the weld
* Cracking tendencies
* Corrosion in service
* Color matching, if the material is anodized
Different filler metals address these considerations to varying degrees. In general, if strength is the primary consideration, the filler metal should closely match the base metal in tensile, yield and ductility.
Most consumable manufacturers, as well as the AWS, offer information listing the relative values of these considerations of their filler metals for each base alloy.
Q: Are there any general-purpose aluminum filler metals?
A: While no aluminum filler metal fits all needs, 4043 and 5356 are the two most common and make up the majority of aluminum filler metal sales. They can be used with the most widely used aluminum alloy base metals. Hobart Brothers recently expanded its product lines with the development of its Smootharc™4043 and Smootharc™5356 wires, which provide excellent feedability, good wetting action and rated excellent compared to competitors products.
Hobart's new Smootharc™ aluminum filler metals come in both spools for MIG welding and fixed length rods for TIG applications.
4043 is a favorite among welders because its silicon alloy increases ease of welding and gives better puddle control. It can be used with a wide variety of base alloys, getting relatively high marks in all categories. It’s more forgiving in terms of weld parameters. It’s clean and provides a nice appearance.
5356 is another general-purpose filler metal and is probably used most widely. It gets slightly lower marks for ease of welding, but typically offers greater tensile strength when compared to 4043. Its higher columnar strength means it feeds easier than 4043 and it also has a faster melt-off rate, so it requires a faster wire-feed speed for the same diameter wire.
Although these two make up the majority of uses, be sure to check your metal wire manufacturer’s data sheets to ensure their suitability for your particular application. More information can be found in the AWS book Specification for Bare Aluminum and Aluminum Alloy Welding Rods and Bare Electrodes, AWS A5.10.