Bell metal

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Tibetan bell
MFA# 20.6a


A metal alloy used for casting bells and musical chimes. Bell metal is usually composed of Copper with 15-40% Tin, but may contain small amounts of Zinc, Iron, or Lead for damping.

Fire tongs
MFA# 32.342

Synonyms and Related Terms

bell bronze; bronze à cloches (Fr.); Glockenbronze (Deut.); klokkenbrons (Ned.)

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Refractive Index = 1.0052

Resources and Citations

  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993 Comment: copper with 15-40% tin
  • R.Child,"The Identification of Post-Industrial Revolution Metals" in Modern Metals in Museums, Institute for Archaeology Publications, London, 1988. - 15-25% tin
  • The American Heritage Dictionary or Encarta, via Microsoft Bookshelf 98, Microsoft Corp., 1998
  • Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  • CRC Handbook of Chemistry and Physics, Robert Weast (ed.), CRC Press, Boca Raton, Florida, v. 61, 1980 Comment: ref. index=1.0052