base metal

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base metal (countable and uncountable, plural base metals)

  1. (chemistry) Any metal at the lower end of the electrochemical series that oxidizes readily.
  2. (metallurgy) The metal to be welded (rather than that used to weld).
  3. A common or inexpensive metal
    1. (chiefly alchemy) one that was hoped to be transmuted into a precious metal.

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