Rockett, Frank H. Engineering Consultant, Charlottesville, Virginia.
Last reviewed:January 2020
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The generic term for any of several techniques for applying thin coatings of zinc to iron or steel stock or finished products to protect the ferrous base metal from corrosion; more specifically, the hot dipping that is widely practiced with mild steel sheet for garbage cans and corrugated sheets for roofing, sheathing, culverts, and iron pipe; and with fencing wire. During dipping, molten zinc reacts with the steel to form a brittle zinc-iron alloy. Control of temperature and the addition of aluminum reduce formation of the alloy, resulting in a more ductile coating. For marine use, magnesium is added.
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