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How to print on anodized aluminum sheet without using Film


I need to find a machine that will print various white and black letters on thin aluminum plates. We are currently using an Automark TMB 2000 but would like to find some other options.

Jesse [last name deleted for privacy by Editor]
- R.C., Wisconsin USA


Dear Friends:

This is Frank, I am a Co-op Student and I met a problem in my second work-term as follows: I am working in a Aluminum Anodized Nameplate Manufacturing company. The production procedure is as follows: 1.Anodized aluminum sheet; 2. Make a film with images on it; 3. for large amount of products, use Silk-screening tech; for small amount order(<20), use photographic tech as follows: dip aluminum sheet in some chemical to photographize it; put the film on a glass cabinet and cover the aluminum sheet on the film, light the film so that the lighted area are sealed. 4. dye the aluminum, the lighted area are not dyed while other areas are dyed. Now the problem is of the produce of Barcodes:the amount of barcode is small ( 1 or 2) while each barcode is different. so we have to make film for each barcode to produce just one or two sheets, that is very costly. My boss wants me to design a new method to produce aluminum barcode in the same procedure, but WITHOUT using the film with the help of computer technology. My specialty is computer science but I do not have any idea about that. Anybody give me some advice? My boss'd like to buy some new equipments, or hire some experts to finish this job.

Thanks in advance.


Aimin CHEN
- Toronto, Ontario, CANADA


I am an anodizer without much computer expertise. But I have wondered if it would be possible to modify an color ink jet printer to apply anodizing dyes in precise patterns. I have information on special dyes which can be modified to flow and dry like inks. It would seem to be a relatively easy task for a 2D surface like a plate. Three dimensional parts would present a more difficult task.

Chris Jurey, Past-President IHAA
Luke Engineering & Mfg. Co. Inc.
supporting advertiser
Wadsworth, Ohio
luke banner

November 10, 2008

You and your boss should look into the use of a CO2 laser engraving machine for the application of barcodes to anodized surfaces. I think you will find that the technique produces the efficiency you are looking for.

David Baldwin
engraving support - Dade City, Florida

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