Pros and Cons of Aluminum, Copper, and Tin Sheet Metal

Picking the best sheet metal for your manufacturing process can be tough. Aluminum, copper, and tin sheet metal are all three prevalent in industrial settings. Here is a look at the pros and cons of each. 

Aluminum Sheet Metal 

Aluminum sheet metal has been used for an array of different applications in construction, manufacturing, and other industrial processes. It is a cost-effective material with a nice finish, which makes it ideal for a lot of things. 


  • Aluminum is the lightest weight of all three types of sheet metal 
  • The sheets are resilient to corrosion; therefore, it is good for outdoor applications 
  • Aluminum sheet metal is highly flexible, which makes it a good choice for certain manufacturing processes 


  • The lightweight structure also means aluminum is easily punctured
  • Aluminum may not hold its shape as well as other types of sheet metal 

Copper Sheet Metal 

Unique with its golden appearance, copper shows up on rooftops, furniture, and many other pieces, but it also has a lot of advantages in the industrial world. Even though copper is one of the most costly of the three, it has a list of advantages that make it a worthy investment for some applications. 


  • Copper has one of the most unique looks of any sheet metal; often taking on a beautiful patina 
  • Sheets made of copper of conductive and thermal, which makes them good for a wide array of applications
  • Copper metal sheets can work well in high-temperature applications because it has a high melting point


  • Copper sheeting is more expensive to fabricate than tin or aluminum
  • The material is softer and loses its shape easier 
  • The surface of copper is extremely easy to scratch or otherwise blemish 

Tin Sheet Metal 

Tin is perhaps one of the most common and traditional forms of sheet metal. The inexpensive material works well for low-budget applications and is excellent for manufacturing processes. 


  • Tin is one of the least expensive sheet metals to make 
  • Sheets made of tin hold their shape well; it is more rigid than aluminum or copper
  • The surface of tin sheets stand up well to abrasives and will not scratch easily 


  • Tin can rust if exposed to the elements without a protective coating 
  • Tin sheet metal can be harder to shape and form in intricate processes because of its density 
  • The edges of tin can break down with age

As you can see, every type of sheet metal can have its advantages and downfalls. Picking the best for your manufacturing process can take a little investigative research. If you would like to know more about sheet metal, reach out to a sheet metal fabrication company for advice.