What Metals Can Rockwell Portable Hardness Testers Be Used With?

Hardness is a characteristic of a material. It is defined as the resistance to indentation, and it is determined by measuring the permanent depth of the indentation. When using a fixed force (load) and a given indenter, the smaller the indentation, the harder the material.

Rockwell hardness testing is is easier and more accurate than other types of hardness testing. The Rockwell test method is used on all metals, except in when the test metal conditions would introduce too much variations, when the indentations would be too large for the application; or in the case of  the sample size or sample shape prohibits its use. There are a number of Rockwell tests, the most common ones for very hard materials are Rockwell and Rockwell C. When the material is very thin, lighter loads must be used.

Soft and hard metals can be used with our Rockwell testers.

Soft Metals

Soft metals includes lead, gold, silver, tin, zinc, aluminum, thorium, copper, brass and bronze. Gallium might also be considered a soft metal, as it melts at 85.57 degrees F.

A metal’s softness is what makes it valuable. For example the softness of copper allows it to be formed into wires and made into plumbing pipes. For other metals, softness is not valuable.  Precious metals like gold are too soft to,  so they are nearly always alloyed with another metal to make them stronger.

Hard Metals

There are a many metals that are considered to be strong . Some of the hardest metals are:

  • Steel
  • Titanium
  • Tungsten
  • Inconel

Ames offers a range of portable metal hardness testers for quick and easy on-site hardness testing in the Rockwell scales. Our testers fit most testing situations and comply with ASTM E-110 standard.  Our Rockwell testers are built with the highest quality standards of craftsmanship.



Ames Rockwell Portable Metal Hardness Tester – How To Use?