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Electro polishing stainless steel?

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  • Electro polishing stainless steel?

    I have built some small stainless steel boxes that have a weld burn on the outer seams. I just want the stainless to look like the standard 2-b finish like it was before welding them. Is there anything I can buy or build to clean these up each time I build them?
    I know of an zinc plating shop somewhat close to here. Is there anything he can do for me with his standard equipment?

  • #2
    I've heard of electro polishing stainless before. I have also heard that the part has to be relatively clean before it can be polished. I don't know if your weld burns will have an effect or not. Perhaps you should try using a wire brush or a scotch brite pad? 2B is matte is it not?

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    • #3
      I made a search for you because i'm having the same problem with one of my parts.And I found the perfect machine for your application.
      Just click this site. One of my friend as one at there shop and he said that it was amazing the result it completely remove all welding discoloration.
      http://www.jwalter.ca/servlet/walter...ox&item=54D112

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      • #4
        You don't have to clean your parts before you electropolish; the shop normally cleans and degreases your part before the electropolishing stage using chemicals.

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        • #5
          Re: Electro polishing stainless steel?

          Electropolishing Basics
          DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME !!!!!

          Commercial applications for electropolishing have been in use since the early 1950's. Most formal research on the process occurred at that time, motivated by the growth and sophistication in electroplating technology. Today there are about 500 industrial installations nationwide, and perhaps several dozen electropolishing job shops.
          Electropolishing is often referred to as a "reverse plating" process. Electrochemical in nature, electropolishing uses a combination of rectified current and a blended chemical electrolyte bath to remove flaws from the surface of a metal part.

          The typical electropolishing installation is deceptively similar to a plating line. A power source converts AC current to DC at low voltages. A tank typically fabricated from steel and rubber-lined is used to hold the chemical bath. A series of lead, copper or stainless steel cathode plates are lowered into the bath and installed to the negative (-) side of the power source. A part or group of parts are fixtured to a rack made of titanium, copper or bronze. That rack in turn is fixtured to the positive (+) side of the power source.
          the metal part is charged positive (anodic) and immersed into the chemical bath. When current is applied, the electrolyte acts as a conductor to allow metal ions to be removed from the part. While the ions are drawn towards the cathode, the electrolyte maintains the dissolved metals in solution. Gassing in the form of oxygen occurs at the metal surface, furthering the cleaning process.
          Once the process is completed, the part is run through a series of cleaning and drying steps to remove clinging electrolyte. The resultant surface is clean and bright. In fact, the bright surface is the most identifiable trait...the one that helped coin the name: Electropolishing.
          While the process is best known for the bright polish left on a surface, there are some important, often overlooked benefits of this metal removal method. These benefits include deburring, size control, microfinish improvement and others. These metal improvement benefits offer great promise to design and production engineers for cost savings and product improvement.
          Although the process is roughly 45 years old, substantial refinements have taken place. Many electrolytes have been developed to allow for electropolishing of a broad range of metals. These newer electrolytes, together with advanced parts handling techniques have combined to improve production yields on a wide range of metal products.
          Last edited by jimcarry; 09-30-2005, 12:48 PM.
          Jim Eaton

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          • #6
            Re: Electro polishing stainless steel?

            i work with 2b 304 stainless daily in my shop. i have found if you use a wire brush immediatly after welding while the surface is still HOT this will remove the majority of the blackening that occurs from welding. hope this helps. what are the boxes for? also if the parts are not a cosmetic part and you want to keep your 2b finish electro polishing is not the way to go.
            MCF ANODIZING
            [email protected]

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            • #7
              Re: Electro polishing stainless steel?

              Hello

              I am new here.

              I need to know how to plate Bismuth on aluminium or copper on Aluminium.

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              • #8
                Re: Electro polishing stainless steel?

                Originally posted by robur
                Hello

                I am new here.

                I need to know how to plate Bismuth on aluminium or copper on Aluminium.
                This is a question that should be placed in Electroplating
                but since we are here to plate on aluminum after polishing the part must be dipped in zincate
                there are many very good answers to this question like in the electroplating section of this forum http://forum.caswellplating.com/show...ating+aluminum
                Jim Eaton

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                • #9
                  Weld heat tint on stainless steel can easily be removed with this product: www.retropol.com.au
                  It converts your existing tig welder into a weld cleaning/ electropolishing machine. It also uses non-dangerous food grade chemicals so it is pretty safe to use compared to other chemical based methods such as pickling paste. It's also a lot more affordable than the dedicated weld cleaning machines available. Best thing is that it doesn't change the look of the grain finish, so it works just as well on 2B as it does on No.4 finish. The kit sells for around $250 plus postage - and yeah, it really does work.

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