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In the early years of the industrial revolution, the tin-zinc alloy was known as a gun metal. However, it behaves more like a mixture of zinc and tin, rather than a pure metal. Originally, the alloy was developed as a substitute for cadmium electrodeposits. Today, it is commonly used for electrical and electronic applications.
Zinc is used in the production of a wide variety of products, including automobiles, engines, pumps, household fixtures, and jewelry. It is a weak metal, but it can be alloyed with other metals to improve its impact strength.
Zinc-tin alloys are useful in many types of applications. The speculum alloy is a good choice for marine environments because it is corrosion resistant.
Zamak is a zinc-aluminum alloy that is used in die casting applications in Europe. It contains 4% fixed aluminum, 4% copper, and 56% zinc. This material is tarnish resistant and has good formability.
The quaternary copper-zinc-tin alloy layers are deposited by electroplating. These layers contain varying amounts of copper, zinc, and tin by mass. They range from 5 to 13% by mass, and 4.5 um thick deposits have an average content of 5.6% zinc.
Some tin-zinc alloys are solderable and have good oil retention properties. Copper-tin alloys perform as if they were simple mixtures of metals, and can be used for precision instruments.
An autocatalytic tin depositing process would provide a thick solderable layer of tin. However, this would require the surface to be coated beyond immersion coatings.