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Chemically change STAINLESS STEEL w/ #4 FINISH?


To whom it may concern,

I am writing in regards to a studio assignment that was given to my classmates and myself. We were each asigned different metals and were told to perform a mechanical change and a chemical change to each of them. I was assigned STAINLESS STEEL w/ #4 FINISH. I have the mechanical change complete but I know through past experience with stainless that there aren't too many ways for chemically changing them. I have heard that Chlorine is one that causes pits on the surface but I have no idea how long it would take or if it would even work. I have to have 5 different chemical changes to this stainless steel and I was wondering if anyone out there knew of any good recipes that might lead to a nice reaction of the steel. Remember I am a college student and probably don't have access to alot of chemicals. I do appreciate it very much.

Chris Johnson
Architecture Student - Fayetteville, Arkansas


There are LOTS of ways to chemically affect the surface of stainless steel.

Put it in a bleach solution and bubble some air through the solution.

Put nitric or citric acid on the surface (See ASTM A967 [affil link] ) to passivate it. This will chemically remove the iron from the surface down to 25-30 Angstroms.

Put some glass etchant (HF--hazardous) on the surface. Etch it with muriatic acid.

Many more if you do some reading online.

lee kremer
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Lee Kremer
Stellar Solutions, Inc.
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McHenry, Illinois
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