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Wikipedia article

This article is about an older version of DF.

Brass is a metal alloy made from malachite (copper ore) and sphalerite (zinc ore) at a smelter. It cannot be used to make weapons, although it can be used to make moderately valuable trade goods. It is not quite as valuable as silver (which is usually available at about the same time), although it is more fuel-efficient to produce (provided you have not yet set up a magma smelter): just as with making bronze, you get two brass bars from the one fuel and two ores.

Brass is ideal for producing furniture which can not be made from stone, such as barrels, bins, cages, animal traps, and buckets.