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  #1  
Old 07-28-2006, 05:08 PM
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Acid Etching Alumn?

Has anyone thought of this before?

The process is to clean/mediablast the said part (alloy wheels?) to a plain alumn. finish, and then submerge the part in a mixture of 50/50 water and Lye solution, and let it sit (for upto 12 hours)

This leaves a hard oxide coating (pearly white) on the alumn. which is stronger than the alumn. itself.



It dosnt sound like a bad idea to me, why isnt it more popular. I use this process to etch the alumn. rings I use when making chainmaille.
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Old 07-29-2006, 01:18 AM
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You've described an easy way to make hydrogen. no joke.
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Old 07-30-2006, 06:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbaj007
You've described an easy way to make hydrogen. no joke.

a bi-product, really.



add a pop-bottle and you have a nice boom.
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Old 08-09-2006, 11:44 AM
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chain mail?

Really? Why do you make chain mail? Are you into re-enacting or something like that?

This forum has the most interesting people on it.

By "media blast" what do you mean? Is this like sand blasting with other materials? What other media would you use, nut shells and things like that? I have heard of this for cleaning bronze sculptures, etc.
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  #5  
Old 08-09-2006, 05:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee8go View Post
Really? Why do you make chain mail? Are you into re-enacting or something like that?

This forum has the most interesting people on it.

By "media blast" what do you mean? Is this like sand blasting with other materials? What other media would you use, nut shells and things like that? I have heard of this for cleaning bronze sculptures, etc.

For fun. It's something to do on those rainey days...

Media blasting is like sand blasting (yes, they use shells sometimes) but it's less harsh that regular sand blasting (we're just taking off a layer of paint...)

Etching involves Mixing Lye (active ingredent in draino) with water, and setting the (clean) alumn in it, for upto 12 hours, depending on the alloy of alumn. used. Resuslts will be a nice, clean pearly-white layer of oxidation on any exposed portion of the wheel. This coating is harder than the alumn. itself, and can be painted over without worry of turning black.


-----------------------------------------------------------------
Taken from www.theringlord.com (where I get all my rings)
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"Instructions for acid etching.

Make damned sure to read the safety stuff at the end.

According to my aluminum expert a 10% sodium Hydroxide solution is typically used to etch aluminum but Sulfuric Acid seems to work fine for etching. I compared sulfuric acid etched rings to the commercially etched wire I use and it is pretty much the same. Both are easy to get - I'll be trying Sodium Hydroxide soon.

The process is easy but remember you are dealing with stuff that will burn your skin. If you can't pour without spilling all over the place then you are not qualified to do acid etching and you should buy etched rings or wire

Best done outside or in a well ventalated area on a cement floor - sulfuric acid on wood or carpet could do som serious damage.

1. Obtain sulfuric acid - cost about $5/gallon - try the phone book under chemicals.

2. Wear old clothes and rubber gloves and safety googles/glasses.

3. Get 2 or more plastic container that are significantly larger then the amount of rings to etch. A stainless or plastic mesh basket for your rings is quite useful. You need a source of water and some baking soda.

4. Dilute your acid to about 20-30% Sulfuric acid - remember Always Addd Acid to water.

5. Dump acid over rings in a plastic bucket.

6. Allow to sit for 3-4 hours - stirring not required and increases the chance of an accident. There is no harm leaving the rings was longer.

7. Pour off the acid into another container - this step is a lot easier if the rings were in a basket.

8. Rinse the rings 3-4 times useing fresh water each time. I recommend adding baking soda to the water each time until the baking soda stops fizzing. Mixing is a really good idea here. The warmer the water the better the rinse works but the water temp is not a big deal. Neutralized waste water can be discarded in the septic system.

9. Spread out the rings and allow them to dry.

10. If you find your hands itch when using the rings then wash them again.

You can reuse the acid many times (yes it will look scummy but it still works). When it stops working it is too scummy you should take the sludge to a hazardous materials dump - check the phone book.

Safety stuff:
If you get acid on anything it shouldn't be on wash in lots of water. Baking Soda is also handy as it will neutralize the acid making in non-corrosive.
Sulfuric acid will eat through organic material including wood, cloth, paper, skin, etc.
If you splash acid on your skin it is not too serious. I've been splashed once and I washed immediately and never noticed any discomfort. I did notice the erea splashed immediately got very warm.

Sulfur gas is released from the etching reaction. Its not pleasant to breath and can't possible be good for you so ventalation is a good thing.

I've had one serious accident.... With a solution of about 80% sulfuric acid poured over 15 pounds of rings in a container that just held the 15pounds of rings. The reaction created lots of heat and literally melted the container dumped sulfuric acid all over the floor of my garage and making a lot of thick toxic smoke. Sent then I use baskets of 10 pounds of rings emersed in about 40 liters of 20% solution."
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  #6  
Old 08-17-2006, 04:08 PM
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http://theringlord.com/cart/shopdisplayproducts.asp?id=14&cat=Machine+Cut+Etched+Aluminum+Rings


depending on the alloy of alumn, results may very.
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Old 08-17-2006, 11:11 PM
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whole new world

Well, Monomer, you've opened my eyes to a whole new world. Never even knew such things existed, even though I did take my son to the Maryland Rennaisance Festival once. Never really thought much about where all the stuff they were wearing came from.

Do you get into working with any other metals?
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  #8  
Old 08-18-2006, 05:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dee8go View Post

Do you get into working with any other metals?

Alumn is fun because it's easy on the hands/tools.


I also use: Stainless Steel (316/Surgical) EPDM rubber, Titanium, German silver/Nickle silver, Brass, Si Bronze, etc...
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