Frequently Asked Questions

What alloy of copper do you carry?

All copper is sold as an alloy-some purer than others. At Basic Copper, we sell highly pure C110-certified to be at minimum 99.9% pure copper! (other alloys and tempers available upon request). This high purity provides the premium quality needed for projects and applications in a wide range of industries and uses. Our copper is the preferred choice for everyone from contractors, government agencies, multi-national corporations, to individuals and small businesses. The copper we offer is used for everything you can imagine: airplanes, spacecraft, artwork, DIY home improvement, research & development, crafts, furniture-making, architecture, engineering, jewelry-making, children’s crafts projects, interior/ exterior design, garden projects, health and wellness, EMI/RFI shielding, and more. We take pride in providing the highest quality material.

What thickness of Copper Sheet should I use for my project?

See our Copper Sheet Thickness Guide for more information regarding choosing a thickness for your project. Also, see our Project Advice, Tips, and Tutorials page for advice specific to your project. If you still have questions, please email us, call (252-491-2812) or use our live chat service.

What can I use to remove fingerprints from my copper foil?

If you do not use gloves when handling copper sheets, the oil from your fingers will stain the copper. Removing these stains can be accomplished by using Wright's Copper Cream (note that when trying to remove stains from our patina copper sheets, you should avoid cleaners as it may disturb and discolor the patina). You can also use a homemade mixture of lemon juice, salt, and baking soda (skip the salt for less abrasiveness). Note: At Basic Copper we handle your copper sheets using gloves and take great care to make sure the copper arrives in the best possible condition!

What kind of finish does your copper sheet have?

Excluding our patina copper sheets, all of our copper sheet and copper foil has a smooth commercial finish (also known as "mill" finish). On occasion, you will notice a small amount of mineral oil on your copper sheeting. This is applied at the mill to slow down the oxidation process and help the rolling process. It can be removed quite easily with a cloth and a gentle buffing.

What is copper foil?

Copper foil typically denotes thin copper sheeting.005" (5 mil or 36 gauge) and thinner. Our copper foil stock consists of .001" (1 mil), .0014" (1.4 mil), .003" (3 mil ) and .005" (5 mil or 36 gauge). We also sell thicker copper sheeting. See our .008" (8 mil), .010" (10 mil), .016" (16 mil), .0216" (22 mil or 24 gauge/16 ounce), .032" (32 mil or 20 gauge), and .040" (40 mil or 18 gauge) stock.

Does "mil" mean millimeter?

No. Mil is an industry term used to describe the thickness of copper sheeting. The lower the "mil" number the thinner the copper sheet. For example, 1 mil copper foil is thinner than 1.4 mil copper foil, 8 mil copper sheet is thinner than 10 mil copper sheet and so on.. The thickness of copper sheeting is also often identified by "gauge." In terms of gauge, the lower the gauge number, the thicker the copper sheet is. So 36 gauge (5 mil) copper foil is thinner than 30 gauge (10 mil) copper sheet and 30 gauge (10 mil) copper sheet is thinner than 26 gauge (16 mil) copper sheet. Sometimes the thickness of copper is referred to by its thickness in inches and how many ounces it weighs per square foot. So 5 mil copper foil is often referred to .005" and 10 mil as .010" and 16 mil as .016". 16 mil/26 gauge copper sheet is also referred to as 12 oz. copper sheet and .0216" (24 gauge) copper sheet is often referred to as 16 oz. copper.

Will this copper sheet develop a patina?

Yes, copper left untreated will develop a beautiful green patina over time. The patina actually serves to protect and preserve the copper from corrosion. Of course, how long this process takes depends on the surrounding environmental conditions. For example, this process happens much faster when the copper is outside exposed to the elements rather than inside a climate-controlled building. Click on the following link to read a great article about the oxidation process from .

Can I speed up the oxidation process?

Yes, because the oxidation process is a relatively slow one, many people wish to speed it up via chemical coloring. We sell a variety of patina solutions and copper sheets with the patina already applied.

Can I keep my copper sheet from developing a patina?

Some people prefer to keep the new shiny look of copper by sealing with a variety of different clear coats. Check out these excellent articles about clear coating from and

How do I order?

Begin by selecting the thickness you would like to order by using the menu to the left. They are listed in order from the thinnest available 1 Mil to the thickest 40 Mil (18 gauge). Once you have clicked on your selection, you will be directed to a page listing all of the sizes available in that thickness in order from the narrowest width at the top through the widest width at the bottom. When you find the item you would like to order, click on the "add to cart" button. Do this for each item you would like, and then when you are ready to checkout, click the "view cart" button located at the top and bottom of your screen. From there, enter the information needed to process your order. Please email us. Let us know if you have any problems or questions! It is important to keep in mind that no clear coating will last forever, and will eventually have to be reapplied.