How to Identify Bronze vs. Brass

Many of us have wondered how to tell bronze from brass, and which is the optimum composition of metals for marine use.  You’ll want to read the Cruisers Forum thread, “Identifying Bronze versus Brass.” Posts cover information ranging from cast products to screws, nuts and bolts. The posts are definitive and include a couple from very knowledgeable people.  You’ll pick up some real world experience such as you should always go with red brass (gunmetal), which is 85-5-5-5 composition, or 85 percent copper, 5 percent tin, 5 percent lead and 5 percent zinc.  Avoid yellow brass in marine applications. The following is from a mechanical engineer with extensive experience in corrosion engineering:  the metallurgical standards for marine bronze in the US are stricter than in Europe.  Therefore “If you replace sea cocks in Europe, plan to do it again in a couple of years. I find this one really dangerous.”

About Marine Consignment Stores

The marine consignment store is a business model where everybody wins: the boat equipment owner has a sales outlet for his unwanted items and the buyer can find bargains on used equipment. The store owner can operate in a popular business niche and doesn’t have money tied up in inventory. The defining feature of a consignment store is who owns the item for sale. The equipment owner brings his item to the store and retains ownership until the sale is made. For the buyer, the obvious attraction is buying a serviceable part or equipment for a fraction of the cost of a new item. And consignment stores are known for having hard to find items.

Here’s a list of marine consignment stores from our database.

You can scroll through the list or use the “Search by Country & State” widget in the right column.  This is a growing list. If you know of a consignment store in your area– anywhere, worldwide– contact us with the info and we will add the merchant to our list. What’s not to like about the consignment store model? For the consignment store operator, or consignee, a major benefit is that one is using other people’s money. Except for overhead such as rent or mortgage, utilities, payroll and related costs etc.—the owner doesn’t have money tied up in inventory. The owners (consignors) of the parts and equipment displayed in the consignment store retain ownership until the sale is made. Then the agreed-upon splitting of the profit is done. Many consignment stores are never at a loss for inventory, as owners are happy to find a sales outlet for their unwanted items. It’s less painful for those technologically challenged people who may not feel comfortable launching an e-Bay sale. Finally, as store owners are aware, even if the part doesn’t sell, the consignment store is a convenient free storage facility for the owner. Don’t confuse consignment stores with marine salvage stores or salvage yards.  You may find salvage parts at either in salvage yards, much as the familiar auto salvage yards or in storefronts.  In yards you may have to wade among salvage wrecks to root out what you’re seeking .  Ideally, the dealer has a storefront and will have disassembled the parts, cleaned them up and then displayed them indoors on shelves.  The salvage dealer usually owns the items he sells. We have separated consignment stores from salvage dealers so that boat owners may understand that they can buy the items they’re seeking AND place their own unwanted items with the consignment store for sale.  From the buyer’s standpoint, a consignment store is attractive because the price is often quite negotiable when an owner needs immediate cash– or just wants rid of the item. The consignment store concept hasn’t seemed to have caught on yet in other popular sailing nations such as the UK, other European countries, and Australia and New Zealand. There are used parts stores that may be located in marinas and boat breakers salvage yards and the owners have probably bought items they stock for resale. In the UK a popular alternative is the boat jumble.  Here’s a schedule for upcoming events on the UK Boat Jumble Association Website. Here is some definitive information about consignment stores. Although some is country-specific, such as the US Small Business Association, much of the material in those articles is good information. US Small Business Association: Starting a Consignment Store Or if you’re interested in the consignment store concept, just Google start a consignment store for a ton of links.