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Old 04-02-2014, 04:44 PM   #1
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Default Anybody anodizing aluminum at home?

Are there any members of this sight that have tackled anodizing aluminum at home? If so, are you willing to share your experience and techniques? I plan on taking on this task so I thought out would put out the request. If you have actually done anodizing I would love to hear from you. If you have not done it, we can all learn together by reading along.

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Old 04-02-2014, 05:10 PM   #2
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I've thought about it but the chemicals aren't cheap nor terribly safe to store. For small batch or one shot type deals its prohibitive. Parkerizing is doable at home but anodizing is another animal. Even folks like midwest industries outsource it to dedicated anodizers. You can't just spot anodize either its pretty much all or nothing.

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Old 04-02-2014, 05:21 PM   #3
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Thanks Im still inclined to learn this skill set as I can see the value in it. The costs dont deture me and I always like to learn new things.

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Old 04-02-2014, 05:31 PM   #4
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Good luck on getting it to match other parts on the weapon or turn out the exact color you want.
I think I will leave that project to the professionals.

And once the part is Anodized it is "Anodized" if you copy what I am saying. NO second chance to make it correct. It can come out with a very black-deep purple effect! EEK! Since Anodizing impregnates the surface and is far from being a surface coating. To totally remove it after it is done changes the dimensions of the part.

Good Luck my friend!

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Old 04-02-2014, 05:40 PM   #5
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Anodizing mixtures are closely held trade secrets when it comes to coloration while maintaining hardness standards.

I would suggest trying parkarizing first. The processes are closely similar

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Old 04-02-2014, 05:56 PM   #6
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Not to be nit picky guys but Im not seeking advice on how to avoid learning a new skill set or how to fear anodizing. Im looking for input from members that actually anodize and are willing to share their experiences doing it. Im surrounded daily by people telling how not to do stuff or that it cant be done or it would be too difficult. I don’t usually pay attention to those folks because im too busy actually doing what they say cant or shouldn’t be done. If you have actually done it and failed, I might be interested but if you have never tried it and want to see to it that I don’t either, im less interested. The world is full of people too afraid to fail to even give it a try. The joy is in the doing. There is much to be learned by failing.

If you aimed for black and got purple, then solve the problem. You don’t stop trying and assume that others are just smarter than you and figured it out what you cant. You miss every shot you don’t take.

Many many people have for many many years been anodizing aluminum. Im not seeking input on anything that hasn’t already been done. If other men have been successful at it there is no reason to think I wont also be successful and I wont know unless I try which is why I place little value on discouraging words.

P.S. A lye bath (draino and water) will remove anodizing.

P.S.S. I am not soley looking for info for gun restoration and will also focus on new parts and even archery gear.

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Old 04-02-2014, 06:16 PM   #7
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If you do a Google search for diy anodizing- there are a few companies that DO make products for home use.

Yes, stuff is dangerous. I do hot caustic blue in my home shop, knowing that it is a boiling supersaturated solution of lye and ammonium nitrate, and getting it in your eye could cost you the eye. Spend some time reading, learning, and use the right safety gear.

As I understand the process, you are building up a layer of aluminum hydroxide on the surface, dying that, and sealing the color in. It should be do-able at the home shop level if you can safely handle acids and jumper cables. I'd say give it a try.

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Old 04-02-2014, 06:19 PM   #8
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Thanks C3. youtube has been helpful and I just figured I would ask here since this site is populated with some very capable folks.

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Old 04-02-2014, 06:20 PM   #9
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maybe i should build a nuclear reactor in my backyard and start generating my own power. surely someone might suggest or even recommend that this is not the best thing to do.

saying someone can't do something is not the same as saying maybe they shouldn't do it, simply because of the dangers involved.

somtimes instead of just jumping into something maybe using some common sense first is the best approach. maybe do some real indepth research into the chemicals and equipment involved. Google is your friend.

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Old 04-02-2014, 06:28 PM   #10
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Already done. Countless hours of reaserch/reading on the subject have been done coupled with web searches and youtube viewing as well as material/chem sourcing. My original request was seeking input from members of this community that might have already tried anodizing since the only way to find out if others here have tried it is to ask them. Perhaps I should have placed a qualifier in my opening request for only those who have actually tried it to comment, all others need not reply.

As to the “dangers” I contend that my drive to and from work daily is the most dangerous thing I can do each day as I am at the mercy of others. Anodizing in my shop is only dangerous to me if I allow it to be (And I wont as I have a very high regard for self preservation)

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