Author Topic: Yet another question about enclosure etching  (Read 3373 times)

Govmnt_Lacky

Yet another question about enclosure etching
« on: October 21, 2010, 09:17:43 AM »
I have a brand new Hammond 1590BB still in the plastic with no dents or dings. So my short and simple question is this:

Do I have to sand the oxidation off of the top BEFORE I etch or will the FeCl etchant just eat right through it?

I ask this because I dont want to waste time sanding before etching if the surface is already smooth.
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deadastronaut

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2010, 09:19:46 AM »
i would sand it anyway..it may look flat, but it might not be, use a block to sand it to get it totally flat,
no hi or low spots ok...
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Govmnt_Lacky

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2010, 09:34:06 AM »
i would sand it anyway..it may look flat, but it might not be, use a block to sand it to get it totally flat,
no hi or low spots ok...

Thanks Rob. My plan is not to etch the entire face. In fact, most of the face will be taped off or have nail enamel for resist. I merely want to etch for two knobs and a pedal name. All block lettering.
I mostly asked the question because I wanted to know whether or not the FeCl etchant would etch through the oxidized aluminum. The box itself is already pretty flat and if I sand it I can run the chance of adding flaws into the surface. Dont want to run the risk if I don't need to  ;)
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deadastronaut

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2010, 10:20:15 AM »
right gotcha...i would paint the whole surface with nail varnish anyway even up to the edge of the lettering...... that works a treat...

and it doesnt go through it...better to be safe than blotchy... :icon_mrgreen:
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Govmnt_Lacky

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #4 on: October 21, 2010, 11:34:36 AM »
right gotcha...i would paint the whole surface with nail varnish anyway even up to the edge of the lettering...... that works a treat...

and it doesnt go through it...better to be safe than blotchy... :icon_mrgreen:

Thanks Rob. Already planning on using the nail enamel  ;) I do have some great thick packing tape to use also to cover broader areas.

So, getting back to my original question. Will the Ferric Chloride etch the oxidized aluminum as well as it would sanded aluminum? I dont want to dump this into the etchant and see that the oxidation would not let the etchant work  :-[
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deadastronaut

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #5 on: October 21, 2010, 12:35:40 PM »
yeah sorry, i missed ya point didnt i... :icon_rolleyes:

i would think that it will eat into any exposed aluminium...(not totally sure on that though)

what do you  mean by oxidised exactly..?...do you mean that greasey feel when its new?..(like engineering juice)..

either way. i would sand it anyway, to get an even etch...just in case.. then cover any unetched  in varnish etc...to be sure!..
you will end up sanding all the varnish etc off it after anyway...

dont know if this helps..

http://www.cabuk1.co.uk/FAQ%207%20Oxidation%20of%20aluminium.pdf
« Last Edit: October 21, 2010, 12:44:49 PM by deadastronaut »
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Maik

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #6 on: October 21, 2010, 12:55:55 PM »
Hi Lacky,

yes it will etch without sanding. Problem: The oxidation is harder than the sanded or piece without oxidation. I would prefer a sanding. Only takes 5-15 min.300-600 is ok.

frequencycentral

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Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #7 on: October 21, 2010, 01:39:50 PM »
Etch Master Slade says you must sand the surface totally flat to get a good toner transfer. I believe him.
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Govmnt_Lacky

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #8 on: October 21, 2010, 02:15:58 PM »
Etch Master Slade says you must sand the surface totally flat to get a good toner transfer. I believe him.

I would never question the methods of etch master Slade  ;)

I would want to ask a question about his phrasing though. Does he mean that you should sand the surface to remove oxidation or sand the surface to make it completely flat? My surface is already completely flat. Just oxidized  :-\
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frequencycentral

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Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #9 on: October 21, 2010, 02:33:25 PM »
He means sand the surface to make it completely flat. I recently sanded a couple of boxes ready for etching. I taped a 12" square piece of sandpaper to my (very flat) workbench, held the box in my hand and sanded away. I found that what I thought looked flat wasn't. The edges of the surface looked sanded straight away, but it took quite a few minutes of sanding before the centre of the surface was touched by the sandpaper. As toner transfer relies on a flat iron and a flat surface to be transferred to, the dip in the middle would have prevented a decent transfer.
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Barcode80

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2010, 02:38:10 PM »
To add to that, any little pits at all in the surface will not allow for toner adhesion, and neither will the oxidation. You actually need to sand it for all those reasons, plus the flatness and the fact that those enclosures come DIRTY!

Govmnt_Lacky

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2010, 02:45:00 PM »
Ok.... sanding it is then. Thanks all.  ;D
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deadastronaut

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2010, 07:45:58 PM »
bit of good old fashioned elbow grease!.... ;)
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Govmnt_Lacky

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #13 on: October 22, 2010, 01:45:39 PM »
Ok, my first attempt at etching was a miserable FAILURE!  :'(

I sanded as recommended... nice and smooth. I think my downfall was using PnP blue! It had really bad adhesion to the aluminum even after ironing for about 6-7 minutes on med-hi (it was the next-to highest setting on the iron.) I decided to try a 1590A enclosure which is why I only ironed for that time.

Can someone recommend a GOOD transfer media to use that is readily available? Preferably something that I can get at Staples or the likes.
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Maik

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2010, 03:37:52 PM »
I take paper from a magazine (Spiegel). And print it on a Brother HL1430. Tried the papers from staples, was not good. From my memory the paper of time magazine or hustler was ok ;D

Govmnt_Lacky

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2010, 03:43:05 PM »
I take paper from a magazine (Spiegel). And print it on a Brother HL1430. Tried the papers from staples, was not good. From my memory the paper of time magazine or hustler was ok ;D

I constantly get product magazines from Newark electronics. I wonder if the covers for that magazine would work  :icon_idea:

Wouldn't that be poetic?
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Earthscum

Re: Yet another question about enclosure etching
« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2010, 12:25:08 AM »
I take paper from a magazine (Spiegel). And print it on a Brother HL1430. Tried the papers from staples, was not good. From my memory the paper of time magazine or hustler was ok ;D

That seriously works?!? I gotta try that... we have an OKI that I use at work, and a Time mag I can slice pages from! lol! Don't let THIS get out to the press...
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