Die Cast Alloys

Aluminum Alloys:

Pure aluminum is not suitable for most die castings. Aluminum is alloyed with a number of other metals to form a material that is very fluid at casting temperatures to promote proper die filling. Alloys are more resistant to soldering which prevents unnecessary wear on the part or die.

A380.0 Alloy: A380.0 is a the most commonly used alloy in die cast as it offers a good balance of material properties along with ease of casting. The high usage of this also typically makes it the least expensive in terms of cost per pound. Typical applications include everything ranging from engine components and electronic devices to simple brackets and hardware.

383.0 and 384.0 Alloys: 383.0 and 384.0 can be considered substantially equivalent and interchangeable in terms of mechanical properties. They offer improved die filling capacity and help in situations where parts have small and intricate features. 383.0 also offers increased resistance to hot cracking during the casting process. They typically result in a slightly higher material cost when compared to A380.0, however since our primary alloy at ADAMS Die Cast is 383.0, it will be the cheapest alloy to produce parts out of.

A360.0 Alloy: A360.0 alloy has increased corrosion resistance and thus offers better protection for unpainted or scratched surfaces when exposed to corrosive environments. It also offers better strength properties at elevated temperatures and slightly improved ductility. These characteristics are offset by an increased difficulty to cast which results in higher cost to manufacture parts.

369.0 Alloy (formerly known as Special K-9 Alloy): 369.0 is a special use alloy with offering increased corrosion resistance similar to A360.0 as well as increased strength similar to B390.0 alloy. It has a much more ductile than alloy B390.0 and has very high impact strength. Our 369.0 alloy offering maintains a lead (Pb) content of under 80 ppm (.008%).

A413.0 Alloy: A413.0 is an alloy chosen for improved pressure tightness, corrosion resistance, and resistance to hot cracking. It is among the easiest of the die cast alloys to cast and can be useful for making intricate components as well as pressure tight vessels such as pneumatic or hydraulic cylinders.

B390.0 Alloy: B390.0 Alloy was developed for automotive engine blocks and has a very high resistance to wear. This high wear resistance comes with a sacrifice to ductility, however. It is useful in components with surfaces requiring a high wear resistance such as valve bodies or piston bores. Two alloys with similar properties, alloy 361.0 and alloy 369.0, are being utilized in limited applications where vibration is also a concern.

518.0 Alloy: 518 alloy offers the best combination of corrosion resistance, strength, and ductility but is one of the most difficult to cast. The low amount of Silicon in its composition contributes to this difficulty to cast but also gives it high machinability and the best finishing characteristics when it comes to polishing and anodizing. This alloy is also typically more harsh on tooling, resulting in a lower tooling life.



ZAMAK 3: Zamak 3 has excellent physical and mechanical properties as well as great cast ability and long-term dimensional stability. It is also has desirable finishing characteristics for plating and chromate treatments, as well as other finishes.

ZAMAK 5: Zamak 5 is generally preferred for higher strength and hardness, where dimensional stability is not an important criterion in the product application. Zamak 5 alloy provides higher strength at the cost of formability during secondary operations.

ZAMAK 7: Zamak 7 has lower magnesium content to increase fluidity, and a small addition of nickel. Zamak 7 has increased formability for secondary operations and has the best fluidity of the Zinc Alloys listed.


Zinc-aluminum alloys have higher aluminum content than standard zinc alloys. Aluminum, being less dense than zinc, causes it to separate in liquid form which requires constant agitation to maintain consistent composition while casting. This makes it more difficult to cast as well as having a higher material price. ZA (Zinc-aluminum) alloys are very high performance. They are stronger and more wear resistant than either zinc or aluminum alloys.

ZA8: ZA8 contains 8% aluminum content. It has a short freezing range and excellent fluidity during casting making it ideal for thin walls or intricate details. It is also very desirable for electro-plating or painting.

ZA27: ZA27 contains 27% aluminum content and is the strongest of the ZA series. It is extremely difficult to handle and has poor die filling characteristics, which can be offset by simplifying the casting design. ZA27 is 40% stronger and harder than typical aluminum die cast alloys and also offers bearing properties not seen in other alloys. As surface defects are common, we advise against its use unless absolutely necessary for the product requirements.

BY ADAMS Die Cast Inc.

Alloy Group Zinc Zinc-Aluminum Aluminum
Common Name Zamak 3 Zamak 5 Zamak 7 ZA-8 ZA-27 360 369 380 383 384 413
Aluminum 3.5 – 4.3 3.5 – 4.3 3.5 – 4.3 8.0 -8.8 25 -28 * * * * * *
Cadmium (Max) 0.004 0.004 0.002 0.006 0.006 .3 -.4
Copper .25 max .75 -1.25 0.25 .8 – 1.3 2.0 – 2.5 0.60 0.5 3. – 4. 2.0 – 3.0 3.0 – 4.5 1.0
Iron (Max) 0.100 0.100 0.075 0.075 0.075 2.0 1.0 1.3 1.3 1.3 1.3
Lead (Max) 0.005 0.005 0.003 0.06 0.06 .01 .01 .01 .01 .01 .01
Magnesium .03 – .05 .03 – .008 .005 – .020 .015 – .03 .01 – .02 .4 -.6 .30 – .45 0.10 0.10 0.10 0.10
Manganese 0.35 0.35 0.50 0.50 0.50 0.35
Nickle .005 – .020 0.50 0.05 0.50 0.3 0.50 0.50
Silicone 9 – 10 11- 12 7.5 – 9.5 9.5 – 11.5 10.5 – 12 11 – 13
Tin (Max 0.003 0.003 0.001 0.003 0.003 0.15 0.1 0.35 0.15 0.35 0.15
Zinc * * * * * 0.50 0.9 3.0 3.0 3.0 0.50

* Denotes remainder

Die Castings are among the highest volume, mass-produced items manufactured by the metal working industry. Die casting alloys are normally non-ferrous. There are many alloys available with a wide range of physical and mechanical properties covering almost every application a designer may require. It is a versatile process for producing complex shaped-engineered metal parts, with a degree of accuracy and repeatability. It permits wide laditude and flexibility in design. It is suitable for casting textured surfaces, and permits the application of a wide variety of attractive and serviceable finishes.

Zamak 3    is the lowest cost all purpose alloy.
Zamak 5    has the highest impact strenth of all the zinc based alloys,is approximately 10% higher in tensile strength than Zamak 3.
Zamak 7    best castability, similar mechanical characteristics to Zamak 3. Optimum choice for thin wall features.
ZA-8   has good creep strength. It is also higher in tensile strength than all the Zamak alloys. Self-lubricating properties.
ZA-27 is the strongest, hardest and lightest of the Zamak alloys. Self-lubricating properties.
360    has good elongation and corrosion resistance.
369    good wear and filling properties but better machinability than 390
383 }  are general purpose die castings, excellent castability
390   good wear and excellent die filling properties, however poor machinability
413    has good elongation and corrosion resistance.


Alloy Group Zinc Zinc-Aluminum Aluminum
Common Name Zamak 3 AG40A Zamak 5 AC41A Zamak 7 AG40B ZA-8 B669-84 ZA-27 360 369 380 383 384 413
Tensile Strength P.S.I. 41000 47600 41000 54200 62000 46000 47000 47000 45000 48000 42000
Yeild Strength P.S.I. (0.2% Offset) 32000 39000 32000 42000 53000 24000 28000 23000 22000 24000 19000
Compressive Strenght P.S.I. 60000 87000 60000 37000 52000
Shear Strength P.S.I. 31000.000 38000.000 31000 40000 47000 28000.0 27000.0 27000.0 29000.0 25000.0
Elongation % In 2 inches 10 7 13 6- 10 2- 3.5 3.5 7 3.5 3.5 2.5 3.5
Hardness B.H.N. 82 91 80 103 120 75 80.0 80.00 75.00 85.00 80.00

While the technical information and suggestions for use contained herein are believed to be accurate and reliable, nothing stated in this bulletin is to be taken as a warranty either expressed or implied. It is the user’s responsibility to determine suitability and fitness of application,perferably through independent prototype castings and field evaluation programs. ADAMS Die Cast Inc.’s limited warranty provides only that its castings will meet the chemical specifications. There is no warrranty of merchantability or fitness for use, nor any other warranty either expressed or implied.

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