Where to buy copper and aluminum online?

I Signed up for a metalworking class for when I start college. I really want to try out a lathe and the tools it comes with. I am planning on making a flashlight host with aluminum first. Any tips on how to do it? I looked online for copper and they come out to be over $50/FT for a 1 inch copper rod! There is also different kinds of copper types. “C14500 Tellurium Copper” Looks like it is much more machinable?

I took courses in machining at a local college. They were very reputable though it was machining from the time you walked in to the time out :). Even had 8 cnc for the advanced course. Ask your instructor where to get it. They usually know scrap yards and people in the industry who will donate metal. We had a couple of masons so it was easy to acquire the stuff we needed for side projects. When I was doing my own thing, I had to source copper locally from a distributor. It is expensive, and there was rumors flying around at the time that chinese copper had lead melted in it. If your using the copper for anything eatable, I’d go with usa copper like from Howell. It should be stamped Howell USA.

Hope this helps. Copper is really expensive any more but buying by the foot from a local distributor is the way to go. Lowes and Home Depot has copper parts but your going to pay a lot more than at a distributor.

cheat and use copper tubing


clear heat shrink tubing over the tube to stop corrosion :davie:

Check out this site. I bought some machinable copper here.


MSC and their subsidiary Enco have a fairly decent selection of aluminum, brass, bronze and stainless steel in rod form. Not too sure about copper and copper alloys. Check Enco first as it is the discount price division. Both readily findable via Google. Also do a search for the metal you want with “surplus” added to the search term. I have bought a fair amount of surplus 6AL4V Titanium rod via “surplus titanium” search term.

MY gosh… this is an amazing idea!!! I have so many nasty copper pipes that corroded.

But surely it should just clean off and you’ll get the nice shine back?,as copoer only slowly reacts with air which then forms a layer of copper oxide and that protects the underlying copper from more extensive corrosion. Give it a light rubbing with steel wool and it will be nice and shiny again.
just look at a really old buildings with now green copper roofs or flashings to see what happens to copper after many years, nothing

not really sure copper tube would be much use for the op’s purposes, think he needs solid round bar

The copper pipe is used for my diy flashlight hosts. I get my hand oils on it just by gently holding it so it corrodes insanely fast with all these hand prints. There are many types of shrink wraps, do you have any suggestions on getting a good, clear one?

Your local metal supply shops should have it available.


Single 18650 Battery PVC Heat Shrink Tubing (Translucent) 2m in length Flattened width: 29mm (before shrinking) $1.18

best i can come up with ATM

I am in the UK and use this ebay seller for my tubing. it is 2 to 1 type ie 30mm will shrink to 15mm


no idea if they will ship international

Some types have glue inside the tubing this maybe a better choice for you as it will stop oxygen getting in, hopefully.

For your first lathe work, brass or an aluminum alloy might be better, and the result would be at least as good. Copper has slightly more heat and electrical conductivity, but not much, and it is soft and hard to machine.
I have 1/2 ” and smaller copper pipe from a plumbing supply store and from http://www.aliexpress.com/item/High-quality-copper-pipe-copper-tube-Class-A/1807216445.html .