Home Anodizing Aluminum  by Starfire

Its EASY, and gives that brand new factory look.
Clean the part to be anodised.
In a plastic container, fill with a fairly strong solution of sulphuric acid.
Place a stainless steel or lead cathode plate at the bottom with a stainless wire attached.
Suspend the part above this on a stainless wire, they must not touch and pour in the acid so the part is covered.
Connect a battery charger to both stainless wires, POSITIVE to the work, NEGATIVE to the cathode plate.
After 30 minutes or so of fizzing, remove work and wash and dry it. Immerse in the dye for 15 to 20 minutes, remove and boil it in water for 20 minutes... this hardens and sets the surface.
Dyes are easily found under the DYLON home dye brand...used for dying wool and fabric. Food dye will also work. All colours are available and cheap.
This is less trouble with small parts and easier than painting. Gives a hard wearing surface, great for brake/clutch levers, pedals, brackets, even a whole engine cover.
Practice the process first on scrap aluminum parts to get the feel, much depends on acid strength, charger current etc, everything works, but times vary.


The finished job has a harder finish than the parent metal and will take quite a hammering. I do a lot of stuff this way for radio equipment bits and bobs, I miss the final boiling phase as I dont need a hard surface. An easier way is to use caustic soda to etch the surface and not worry about the battery charger ...works well but is less controllable, and Alkalines are far worse on the skin than acids. The thing is , with normal common sense, its safe to do, and any fumes are arguably no worse than breathing the paint fumes if you used that method. The depleted uranium bullet syndrome if you like. :lol: By leaving it as is, you will have a matt finish, polishing with metal polish will give a shiny finish. The easiest colours to get right are the black and dark green/blue. The lighter colours can appear blotchy, but practice` makes perfect! Ill post some pics of my stuff next time I do it.