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Brass pipe couplings submitted for examination were deep-drawn from disks then annealed and subsequently cold threaded. Chemical analysis confirmed that the specified alloy Ms 63 was used for fabrication. Some of the pipe already showed fine cracks prior to their installation. In most cases however the cracks were detected after a certain period of operation. The intercrystalline course of the cracks indicated stress-cracking as it often appears in brass after heavier cold deformation. The splitting of the couplings could have been avoided by a tempering heat treatment at temperatures between 230 and 300 deg C after rolling the threads. This procedure would have reduced the internal stresses while maintaining strengthening gained by the cold deformation.

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Karin Kuhn, Stress Cracks in Brass Pipe Couplings, ASM Failure Analysis Case Histories: Processing Errors and Defects, ASM International, 2019,

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