How do we get the best finish?
The anodic layer grows at 90 degrees to the parent metal. Therefore, sharp corners do not anodise and can be prone to chipping or discolouration. To overcome this, it is recommended to put a minimum of a .5 mm bevel or rounded edge on the components.
As explained on the surface preparation page, alkaline etching is another issues that causes blemishes in the end product. Please refer to the "surface preparation" page for tips on avoiding this.
Cleaning prior to anodising
Cleaning is one of the biggest issues for anodising, especially for used items with refurbishing.
New parts: Our processes take most cutting fluids and coolants off before anodising to an acceptable level. They do not pose any issues. Please ensure you follow the alkaline etching advise to assist in quality products.
Used Parts: We ask for your assistance by ensuring that used products are as clean as possible before delivery to us. Items that are dirty, deposit oils and grease throughout our anodising system and it takes hours to clean. If items are excessively dirty we may refuse delivery until clean or charge a clean fee of $100.
At DNA Anodising, we work with our customers to achieve the best quality products through holistic consultation. If you have any further questions or for assistance with the finish, please feel free to contact us.
A standard anodised layer is between approximately 10 and 30 microns thick. If there are machine marks or even the finest of scratches, the finished anodised surface will show these with most finishing types.
There are a number of different finishing types for different applications and industries.
This will leave a mostly transparent anodised layer with a "very slight" grey, green or yellowish tinge. Please refer to the "Aluminium Grades" page for the types of aluminium link with a guide on the colour of clear for each aluminium series.
Brush and etch finish
This is used in a lot of high presentation parts and a way to disguise machine marks. Using scotch bright or sanding, a light brushing in the direction of the grain leaves a smooth natural grained look. An etched finish gives a smooth consistent finish with the absence of machining marks and scratches.
Bead or soda blast finish
Beading and blasting can be a good look if successful. As the beads leave an indentation in the metal surface, the anodising may not take fully and may require more than one process. It can also leave an uneven pigment finish due to the disrupted anodised surface from uneven blasting. Contact our staff for further information in relation to this.
Commonly used within the automotive and art industries, Satin is one of the most common. It requires a fine machine finish or polished surface, but is "dulled" to distort light and create a satin look. Most common finish after the etching process has removed light machining marks.
Commonly used on high presentation components such as show vehicles, race cars and within the building industry. A high gloss requires a mirror finish with no scratches or imperfections before anodising occurs.
If you use a polish to achieve a mirrored finish, use a medium wax, minimal cutting compound and ensure you let the staff know you have used it prior to anodising. This allow the anodising process to be altered to accommodate. Staff can assist with further information.
Things that will prevent a gloss finish:
Poor machine finishing
"Excessive" polish build up
Poor aluminium grade used for manufacturing.
Best grades of aluminium for high gloss:
2xxx and 7xxx series. Others can be used when prepared correctly.
Marine or water submerged components
Marine grade aluminium is most commonly 5000 series. When anodising, a thicker layer of a 20 micron minimum is applied. This provides a better corrosion resistance for items that will be exposed to salt and excessive moisture.
Bike Frames, Rims and Components
We can anodise most frames and rims for motor bikes and aluminium bicycle rims. Some cast items do not anodise.
Car mag rims on the other hand we can not anodise due to the high silicon and magnesium levels used to form a car rim. We can only anodise billet or forged rims for cars. Please contact our staff for further information.
Colour matching and Custom Colours
We have a standard range of colours to suit most industries. But each of these can be altered to a range of custom shades. We can provide colour matching services at an additional cost. Matching an exact colour is not always possible but a sample assists in the closest possible match. We work on around a one shade variance when matching.
When matching two items the reflectivity of the different finishes, machining direction and metal type can create a colour difference.
Colour "flip" is a term used for light reflection from the different angles of the crystalline structure within the metal. This can come into account when colour matching. Please contact our staff for discussion on the matter.
Please refer to the "Colour Matching" page for further information.