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This technique http://imgur.com/a/dCvS5, shows how is easy to do permanent markings in stainless pot. But what about aluminium ?

Does anyone know if it is possible (and safe) to use it in aluninium pots ?

enter image description here

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Try it on the bottom exterior of you pot maybe... –  brewchez Mar 27 at 11:19
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Rather than mark my aluminum kettle, I purchased a metal yard stick and measures how many centimeters high each gallon from 3 to 7 was. –  Graham Mar 27 at 12:34
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A quick google search for "etching aluminum with electricity" brings up several links that suggest it will work on any metal. –  CDspace Mar 27 at 16:15
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We need John Palmer to answer this question about aluminum, and also tell us what he thinks about doing it to stainless steel. Looks very nice! –  Jeff Roe Mar 28 at 3:26
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Before you get too far, you need to decide if your etching will match cold volumes or hot volumes. If room temp to boiling temp is 4%, then by the time you put 9 gallons in there, you're looking at the difference between 9 and 9.36. –  Dale Mar 28 at 15:19

1 Answer 1

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Electro-etching works with all metals, including Aluminum.

Often, the makeup of the electrolyte is changed up to give better or worse results with different metals. In this case, you don't actually need an acid as per the above - just a salt water solution works fine for aluminum.

However, please make sure to do this in a well ventilated area as electro-etching with table salt (NaCl) will result in small amounts of chlorine gas being produced, and that certainly is not good for you to inhale.

I would recommend you test on the bottom of your pot to be sure you have your process down before etching the interior. While it's a relatively straightforward process, some experimentation in a non-visible area will help you get an idea of how long it will take to get an etch of sufficient depth / color.

Once you've etched the pot, boil a full pot of water for 20-30 minutes to re-establish your aluminum oxide layer in the areas you've etched. Note that this may make your etch a little harder to make out, but that's unavoidable.

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I though that the aluminium oxide layer could reduce the visibility of etching, but who knows whether it still useful ? –  Luciano Apr 10 at 13:36
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I believe you are right; you need to overcome the issue with depth. –  BrianV Apr 10 at 21:02

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