But instead of its following from this that the process of alloying copper with other metals was not practised in the time of the poet, or was unknown to him, the contrary would seem to be the case from the passage (Iliad xviii.
R, each with its own set of constitutents, and remember that by different rates of cooling from different temperatures we can retain in the cold metal these different sets of constituents in widely varying proportions; and when we further reflect that not only the proportion of each constituent present but also its state of aggregation can be controlled by thermal treatment, we see how vast a field is here opened, how great a variety of different properties can be induced in any individual piece of steel, how enormous the variety of properties thus attainable in the different varieties collectively, especially since for each percentage of carbon an incalculable number of varieties of steel may be made by alloying it with different proportions of such elements as nickel, chromium, &c. As yet there has been only the roughest survey of certain limited areas in this great field, the further exploration of which will enormously increase the usefulness of this wonderful metal.
This explains the failure of boats built of commercially pure aluminium which have been put together with iron or copper rivets, and the decay of other boats built of a light alloy, in which the alloying metal (copper) has been injudiciously chosen.
In England the following standards are used for plate and jewelry: 375, 500, 62 5, 75 0 and 916.6, corresponding to 9, 12, 15, 18 and 22 carats, the alloying metals being silver and copper in varying proportions.
The electrical conductivity of a metal is often very much decreased by alloying with it even small quantities of another metal.