A Brief History of Metal Brazing

Like many metal working procedures, brazing can be traced back far beyond the modern era. In fact, brazing can be traced to ancient Egypt in the days of the pharaohs. While no one is quite sure exactly how brazing came into existence, we do know that, in ancient times, brazing was different than modern brazing process in the following ways.

  • Brazing was originally performed using a charcoal fire and a blowpipe

  • The fire’s low temperature required the use of filler metals with low melting points

  • Work took longer to complete because it was performed piece by piece

  • Ancient brazing resources could not maintain a “pure” atmosphere

  • Brazing was originally an open air procedure, regardless of the metal used.

Because ancient furnaces were inefficient at creating high temperatures, filler metals with low melting points were used. Consequently, ancient brazing work commonly consists of objects such as statuettes and jewelry made from gold. Advancements in furnace technology eventually made it possible to use stronger filler metals and create more utilitarian objects.


Events in the History of Brazing

The modern brazing process took thousands of years to develop and included hundreds of important events. Scientists, artists, and artisans all contributed to improvements in brazing and the spread of the brazing process across the globe. Below are a few important events in the history of brazing that witness how the procedure gradually progressed to its current state.

  • 2400 B.C. – Small buttons from Egypt were made from gold sheet with a fillet brazed joint.

  • 2200 B.C. – Drinking vessels with handles brazed to the body were created in Troy.

  • 1568 – Italian goldsmith Benvenuto Cellini describes the general brazing process.

  • 1774 – The element Oxygen is discovered.

  • 2001 – Flame brazing 5XXX aluminum alloys using non-corrosive flux is performed.

Today, brazing is a refined process that is performed using various types of equipment, from high-powered torches to atmosphere-controlled furnaces. Consequently, the biggest differences between ancient brazing and modern modern brazing is that work is now completed faster and with greater variety. To learn more about the brazing process, contact Franklin Brazing today.