Heat Treating

Heat Treatment of Aluminum,
Solutioning, Aging and Annealing




At Pilkington Metal Finishing, we solution heat treat and age harden 2XXX, 6XXX, and 7XXX series aluminum alloys for various industries- each run to their own required specifications and industry standards. We also have the ability to return parts at subfreezing temperatures to our customers to prevent age hardening. This allows our customers to continue to shape, form, or machine their parts before they harden to their final temper.

Once our customer’s products have been heat treated, we are able to verify the final temper of the aluminum. We use two physical methods to verify hardness/Temper of heat treated parts: Electrical Conductivity measuring and Rockwell hardness testing.

Solution Heat Treatment is a treatment in which an aluminum alloy is heated to a suitable temperature and held at this temperature for a sufficient length of time to allow a desired constituent to enter into the solid solution, followed by rapid cooling to hold the constituent in the solution.

Precipitation or Age Hardening A time-temperature-dependent change in the properties of certain aluminum alloys. It is the result of precipitation from a solid solution of one or more compounds whose solubility decreases with decreasing temperature. For each alloy susceptible to aging, there is a unique range of time-temperature combinations to which it will respond.

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Our Process

By meeting rigorous 3rd party requirements, we maintain our Nadcap and ISO certifications. Nadcap is a method used by the aerospace industry to ensure that process quality requirements are communicated, understood, and carried out by all suppliers. While this certification is technically specific to aerospace work, all of our customers’ products are subjected to stringent and refined process controls as a result.

Pilkington’s Heat Treat department is staffed with knowledgeable technicians and engineers who are dedicated to quality and continuous improvement. The operators are supported by a quality department, independent of production, who are involved in day to day operations. This ensures our customers’ parts are not only heat treated according to specification, but that the entire process is documented. Records provide us with the ability to duplicate the process used for future runs, while historical jobs can be audited when necessary.

Pilkington also maintains a dedicated customer service and accounting department, separate from the operators performing the service. Customer questions are answered by knowledgeable and helpful members of our team.

Size Capabilities

Oven Substrates Size Capability Solution Age Annealing ISO Nadcap Nadcap QOT
#1 Aluminum 4′ × 4′ × 4′ Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes 350°F, 800 – 1000°F
#2 Aluminum 24″ × 16″ × 6′ No Yes Yes Yes Yes 200 – 400°F
#3 Aluminum 24″ × 16″ × 6′ No Yes Yes Yes Yes 200 – 400°F
#4 Aluminum 36″ × 32″ × 24″ No Yes Yes Yes No n/a

Work Examples

Example 4″ × 10″ – Bracket 5″ × 5″ – Post
Industry Aerospace Automotive
Customer Specs AMS2750, BAC5602 None
Dimensions 4″ × 10″ 5″ × 5″
Alloy 7075 Clad Sheet 6061 Extrusion
Material Thickness .050″ .”
Load Capacity Used < 25% < 85%
Racking Density Low High
Solution Time 30 – 40 min. min.
Solution Temp 920 °F °F
Quenchant < 40% Glycol < % Glycol
Aging Loads 2 1
Aging Time 225°F, 350°F °F
Aging Temp 6 – 7 hrs, 8 – 10 hrs hrs
Required Temper T73 T6
Conductivity Testing 100% None
Hardness Testing Cond. Min and Max 10%
Certified Yes No
Quality Review ∗∗∗∗∗ ∗∗∗
Cost per piece $$$$ $$


Applicable Specifications

Specification Title Customer
AMS2770 Heat Treatment of Wrought Aluminum Alloy Parts Industry Standard
AMS2771 Heat Treatment of Aluminum Alloy Castings Industry Standard
BAC5602 Heat Treatment of Aluminum Alloys Boeing
BAC5946 Temper Inspection of Aluminum Alloys Boeing