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Anodizing dye effects (FLAMES)

I have been trying to do some effects with anodizing dye. Basically the problem I am having is with masking tape. I have been cutting out flames from masking tape, and the tape wicks at the edges where two pieces of tape is joined leaving lines of dye. Does anyone know what the ideal mask is for an application like this? The part I am anodizing is a paintball gun barrel.


Graham Skjenna
- Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

You need some "platers tape" 3M makes a good one, different widths. Kind of like a vinyl layer with sticky. Should stick well to unsealed anodize, does not leave too much residue, ok but not great to cut, razor must be really sharp so as not to pull and pucker.

Jon Quirt
- Minneapolis, Minnesota

Jon is right about the 3m well...what I do when attempting a project like that is overlap the tape instead of butting the edges together..afterwards take something and push the top layer of tape down along the seam...that way no solution can leak under it...this is the way I do our flame designs (sometimes on paintball guns also) some other methods you can try are rubber cement, or a grease pen...I've never tried the grease pen myself but the rubber cement works well.

Good luck,

Jason Aube
- Flint, Michigan

It is important to make sure that the part you are masking on is very clean. One suggestion is to clear chem film your part prior to masking. This will remove the oils and organics leaving your part extremely clean. After masking make sure you "iron" the tape down to prevent leaking. Wooden sticks such as, paint stirrers and popsicle sticks work great for this purpose.

James Richard Guthrie
- Escondido, California, USA
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