Nickel silvers are alloys that contain copper, nickel, and zinc. They are also called nickel brasses, the silver refers to their attractive silver shine. The cast nickel silvers are copper, tin, lead, zinc, nickel alloys and are named for their silvery luster. They have low to moderate strength and good corrosion resistance. They are used in the food and beverage handling equipment, decorative hardware, electroplated table ware, optical and photographic equipment and musical instruments. The cast alloys are UNS C97300 to C97800.
The microstructures of the nickel silvers are predominantly single phase solid solution alloys. The structure of the higher zinc alloys is a two phase structure, similar to that of the high zinc brasses. The nickel is soluble in copper, so it remains in solid solution with the copper. Zinc has limited solubility in copper. Alloys with more than approximately 32% zinc consist of alpha and beta phases.