Many different aluminum profiles are called channels; however, they generally fit into these widely-used categories: “U”, “J”, “C” (or architectural angle), hat channel, both square and rectangular open seam tubing, and almost any other unusually shaped profile for which there is no other name, such as “Z” channel. Hydro Extrusion offers a comprehensive range of aluminum channel shapes with the broadest product capabilities in the industry.
Common uses for aluminum channels include railings, window and door frames, protective edges, ladders, electronics enclosures, aircraft and marine fittings, acoustic tile systems, decorative trim and more. Aluminum channel is ideal for traffic signals which are constantly exposed to weather extremes and benefit from aluminum’s non-corrosive properties.
In the rail industry, aluminum channel is widely used for windows and other components inside the train itself, providing excellent strength without adding the weight associated with heavier metals like steel. Aluminum channel is also ideal for the construction of the outer bodies of heavy vehicles, such as trucks, that require structural strength and maximum fuel efficiency.
Because aluminum withstands heavy loads and resists wind and corrosion, extruded channels are also favored by architects and glaziers who have to cope with the increasingly large spans of glass being incorporated into modern building designs. Large framing components also require large, state-of-the-art presses that allow for wider architectural-quality framing components. Sapa has the ability to supply custom solutions for many unique application requirements.
Aluminum extruders must understand the properties of different aluminum alloys in order to craft profiles with the appropriate characteristics for their intended applications. At Hydro Extrusion, we use both 6xxx series aluminum alloys and proprietary alloys in the 1000, 2000, 3000, 5000, and 7000 series, and standard and special tempers, to satisfy the most complex size and shape requirements of our customers. In the category of channels, suitable alloys include:
Our ACC-U-LINE™, ACC-U-ROD™, ACC-U-HEX™, ACC-U-BAR®, ACC-U-PLATE® and Jumbo Rod product lines are highly sought after by elite machine shops around the globe for their superior machinability and consistent ultra-tight tolerance, exceeding Aluminum Association standards.