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Architectural Aluminum Angle

Extruded architectural aluminum angle is used in applications where appearance is more important than strength. It has a sharp, 90 degree angle on the inside and outside corners where the two legs meet and is a constant thickness to the very end of the piece.

End shot of multiple extruded aluminum shapes

In contrast, structural aluminum angle focuses primarily on strength over appearance and will have a less finished look. It has a radius on the inside corner where the two legs meet and a sharp 90 degree angle on the outside. Its legs are tapered at the outside with a radius.

Other differences between architectural (sharp corner) angle and structural angle are the aluminum alloys used and the heat treatment finishes. Architectural angle is typically made from 6063 aluminum, which is softer and easier to form than 6061 aluminum. It also has a smooth finish that is conducive to finishing or anodizing.

Hydro Extrusion, the world’s premier soft alloy aluminum extruder, offers alloy 6063 in a variety of standard tempers, as well as special tempers developed for unique applications.6063 alloy angle is often finished with a -T6 or -T52 treatment.

The -T6 temper means that the extrusion has been solution heat treated and artificially aged. The -T52 temper means that the extrusion has been cooled from an elevated temperature shaping process and artificially aged. The temper affects the mechanical properties of the end product.

6063 alloy offers the best compromise of all commercial alloys for extrudability, corrosion resistance, formability, weldability, surface appearance, and strength. It is used extensively for architectural molding and trim, furniture, window and door construction, etc.

Maintenance of Architectural Aluminum

Architecturally finished aluminum requires special care. It may require special packaging to protect critical exposed surfaces, and there are safe, practical methods for keep it clean and well-maintained.

  • Anodized Aluminum
    Although anodized aluminum has exceptional corrosion resistant properties, its natural beauty can be damaged by harsh chemicals, rough conditions or neglect. These primarily affect only the surface finish and do not reduce the service life of the aluminum. However, mortar, cement and other alkaline materials will quickly corrode anodic coatings if allowed to dry on the aluminum surface.
  • Painted Aluminum
    Both painted and anodized surfaces, exposed to the atmosphere, collect soil and dirt. Recessed and sheltered areas are more prone to collecting dirt because rain doesn’t wash it away. Dirt will rarely damage the coating, but cleaning will preserve the aluminum’s beautiful appearance. This may be especially important in areas where heavy industrial deposits or construction debris have dulled the surface.

In general, the simplest cleaning procedure is to flush the surface of the aluminum with water using moderate pressure to dislodge the dirt. Cleaning chemicals should not be allowed to collect or puddle on horizontal surfaces or in crevices. They should be flushed with water and dried.

If absolutely necessary, solvents may be used to remove non-water soluble deposits, but use extreme caution or they may damage organic sealants and painted finishes. Never use aggressive alkaline or acid cleaners on aluminum finishes.

Hydro Extrusion is part of the world’s largest aluminum company, and the North American leader in common alloy standard and custom extruded aluminum products.

We supply extruded architectural aluminum angle stock and architectural channel for residential and commercial building, manufacturing, and other industries, and are pleased to offer full development and design services, value engineering, complete structural engineering and full fabrication and assembly consulting.