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Pre-anodizing deburring for a shiny finish

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  • Pre-anodizing deburring for a shiny finish

    We have a similar issue that g8erh8er posted about recently in another thread, but based on our experiences I think our problem is being caused at deburring.

    We have some parts (6061) that we have to tumble deburr and we’re struggling to keep a shiny surface after anodizing. The attached picture isn’t great, but it illustrates the problem. The rectangular block is straight off the machining center and the triangle block has been through tumbling. All other process steps are the same, except deburring.

    Our deburring process is:

    -3 hours in ceramic with the appropriate cleaner
    -Rinse
    -3 hours in porcelain with the appropriate cleaner
    -Rinse
    -Pack to the anodizer

    To the naked eye, the part that has been run through the ceramic and then the porcelain looks just as shiny as the raw machined part, but when the parts come back from the anodizer the part that went through the tumblers has a much more matte finish. On a micro level I think the porcelain balls are just peening down any high spots to create a shiny surface. I’m not sure that is an issue for anodizing. We’ve tried green walnut shells with no change. I’ve had people suggest we try plastic instead of ceramic.

    What has everyone found to be the best deburring process to keep parts shiny through anodizing?

  • #2
    No method of vib finishing with cutting media is going to keep parts shiny and ceramic is the worst for smutting. Porcelain tends to burnish parts more than remove substrate. If you want success you must do two things. Change to synthetic media anywhere from one to four hours then in treated cob, anywhere from 6 to 16 hours depending on part geometry and polish level required. Then, it's up to the alloy and the anodizer to dictate the outcome.
    Last edited by gardinhackle; 04-12-2018, 10:01 AM. Reason: spelling

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    • #3
      Thanks for the response gardinhackle . We'll give some synthetic and corncob a try.

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      • #4
        I recommend contacting your vibratory tumbler manufacture, or a media manufacture. They will let you send them a sample part and they'll fine tune the procedure to give you the best possible finish with their medias.

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        • #5
          Good idea. Thanks dabeechman

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