G’day Julieta. The type of metal used for a bell is dependent on the
type of Tone and the length of decay of the tone you wish to
produce. I will list below some common Bell mixes that I use. I you
wish to use Sterling Silver then you must work harden the metal to
produce the sound required.
Mixes For White Metal Bells
Table Bells. Sn 97% Cu 2.5% Bi 0.5%
Silver Bells Cu 50% Zn 25% Ni 25% (Contains no Silver,
Silver Bells Cu 40% Sn 60% (Contains no Silver, pleasant colour
High Grade Table Sn 19% Ni 80% Pt 1%
German Silver / Nickel Silver.
General Bronze / Brass Bell mixes.
Swiss Clock Bells Cu 75% Sn 25%
Best Tone Cu 78% Sn 22% (This is the one that I prefer)
House Bells Cu 78% Sn 20% Zn 2%
Sleigh Bells Cu 40% Sn 60% (Silver Colour)
General Clock Bells Cu 80% Sn 20%
General Bell is the same a mix as general clock.
Fire Engine Bells Cu 78% Sn 20% Ni 2%
Large Bells Cu 76% Sn 24%
Rail Signal Bells Cu 60% Zn 36% Fe 4% (Basic High Tensile
Gongs Cu 82% Sn 18%
Light Cymbals Cu 92% Sn 8%
Heavy Cymbals Cu 80% Sn 20%
After Casting any of the above bell mixes the bells must be cold
worked to produce the tone and length of decay required, too much
cold working will cause the bells to be brittle and after repeated
use they will crack.
Hope this is some help
Michael W Kohlleppel. ( Metallurgist )
Art Tech Castings Australia.