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There are many different combinations of metals in the various aluminum alloys. Pure aluminum is just too soft. Pure magnesium would be lighter and easy to cast, but would corrode excessively and would be prone to cracking, with dire consequences. Five different alloys of aluminum were used for the Insight body depending on desired characteristics.
 

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IIRC, but I'd have to look at my Insight its a JLW (Japan Light Wheel) aluminum alloy. Been around in production over 17 years now.

Most of Japan inc (Japanese automobile manufacturers) use this same alloy in their wheels. Look for JWL in rasied cast letters on the wheel. If you really need to know the alloy make-up there's probably something on the net about it.

HTH! :)
 

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b1shmu63 said:
Pure aluminum is just too soft. Pure magnesium would be lighter and easy to cast, but would corrode excessively and would be prone to cracking, with dire consequences.
Exactly. If you held a piece of pure aluminum the size of a pencil horizontally, it would bend downward. You have to add other metals to it in order to gain toughness and other properties that are needed for a wheel. Similarly, pure magnesium just might burst into flames if the wheels are impacted.
 

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kapps said:
If you held a piece of pure aluminum the size of a pencil horizontally, it would bend downward. <snip> Similarly, pure magnesium just might burst into flames if the wheels are impacted.
HUH :!: :? Except under controlled conditions or with other external factors neither of the above is even close to true. You'll have to go a lot smaller than 8x150mm or so (pencil dimensions) for a "pure" aluminum rod to "bend" under its own weight. And while Mg is pyrotechnic, and a spark in its powdered form can cause ignition, a solid block is relatively flame resistant.

Non alloyed metals of all types generally are not sufficiently broad in their charasterics to make them desirable over their alloyed cousins.
 

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years ago my brother was grinding away at a magnesium lawnmower base for some time, building up a thick layer of magnesuim powder. Nothing happened until he tried grinding a bolt. The ensuing blaze of brilliant white pyrotechnics was very impressive. No one was hurt. :roll: Do you remember the plane last year that had to land with the front wheel at 90 degrees? That alloy wheel made some impressive flames!
 

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But the grinding had reduced some of the solid magnesium to powder. I suspect that the reason a solid block won't normally catch fire is that the heat is conducted away before any point in the block reaches ignition temperature. But if you have some powder, then grind on a steel bolt to make sparks, the sparks set the powder alight, then the powder burning makes it hot enough to ignite the solid block.
 
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