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Posted: 9/5/2010 8:47:58 PM EDT
I was just working on an old single barrel Ithica with an aluminum receiver. The original finish was 90% gone. So I disassembled stripped off the old finish sanded, degreased and Duracoated. Waited 3 days and the paint promptly pealed off the receiver with a fingernail. Needless to say I was not pleased. I have never seen Duracoat do this before. The paint was mixed properly as it is still sticking to other parts I painted at the same time.

So my question is whats the best thing to use for refinishing aluminum?

Does anyone have a recipe for a blackening agent for aluminum similar to cold blue?

Has anyone here tried to anodize at home? And if so how hard is it and how did it come out?

Thanks
Link Posted: 9/5/2010 9:47:20 PM EDT
I am working on setting up a small anodizing line in my garage, but I have not yet gotten everything together. It is somewhat more involved than applying Duracoat (which I also am getting ready to try, but have not yet actually done).

It looks like anodizing should work easily enough (famous last words!) once I get everything that I need - I'm still waiting on getting some "sealer" chemical, some anodizing dye, and some heating and cooling equipment. I also need to wire up a 220-volt power line for the power supply that I''m going to use. I will be anodizing newly-machined 6061-T6 aluminum alloy parts, which should help me to get good results. Success in anodizing can depend on which alloy you are using. I'm not sure how you can identify the alloy used in your receiver, and so you may just have to give it a try to see if it works for you.

As for the Duracoat scratching off, I'd be interested in hearing whether the finish gets stronger over the next week or two.







Link Posted: 9/10/2010 1:57:22 PM EDT
You need to sandblast the aluminum
Link Posted: 9/10/2010 2:48:30 PM EDT
Are you sure that it is aluminum, and not zinc? Seems like I remember an old Ithaca shotgun that had a pot metal receiver.

I would think that Duracoat would stick to zinc, though it might need to be blasted. After all, I think that is how Davis finished their fine line of derringers, and they were made out of pot metal.

But, I also admit to having no actual knowledge of finishing anything but steel, aluminum, or plastic.
Link Posted: 9/10/2010 3:04:22 PM EDT
Alumahyde works well.
Link Posted: 9/12/2010 8:38:31 PM EDT
Originally Posted By captainpooby:
Alumahyde works well.


This. Prep with bead blasting and heat metal and spray can w/ heat gun (or hair dryer).

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile
Link Posted: 9/13/2010 5:51:00 AM EDT
Thanks- I kind of knew I should blast but my big compressor took a dump and I thought I could get away with sanding instead of blasting.
Link Posted: 9/13/2010 5:54:21 PM EDT
Originally Posted By LA_357SIG:
Originally Posted By captainpooby:
Alumahyde works well.


This. Prep with bead blasting and heat metal and spray can w/ heat gun (or hair dryer).

Posted Via AR15.Com Mobile


Do not bead blast before DuraCoat. Neither steel shot or glass bead will work, leaving too smooth a surface for a successful finish. Aluminum oxide, slag or even ScatBlast (recycled car windows) are a much better selection for blasting. Save the glass beads for parkerizing and steel beads for auto parts. If you're trying to clean up pits or rusted spots, shot blast to smooth out the surface, THEN abrasive blast to get a surface to stick to.

DuraCoat needs a good surface to bite into...only going to get that with abrasive blasting. Their suggestion of sanding or Scotchbrite only barely works and will not adhere like abrasive blasting will. But, it does enough to make it a good selling point.


As far as the coating not hardening, remember some aluminums (especially casts) are highly porous. Whatever you used to degrease may still be in the pores. I degrease with an approved stripper/degreaser, blast, blow off with air, bake, parkerize, wash, dry, then coat and into the oven for an hour @110. I even bake for 30min at 300F after blasting, re-degreasing and reblasting AGAIN if there is any hint of a residue that shouldn't be there. Since I'm doing it for money, I don't want to see the same item again with a problem I could have prevented the first time.

I'm available at millerized at millerized dot com (or through the website millerized dot com) if you have questions you need anwered. I'm by no means an expert, but I'm working hard to make sure that WV's only Certified DuraCoat Finisher doesn't end up a failure.
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