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topic 54426

Surface prep to stop high temperature discolouration of 304 stainless?

February 22, 2010

Hi All,

I'm developing a garden wood burner made of 304 stainless steel that acts as an heater/incinerator, wood is burnt directly in the device and in places the surface approaches 500ºC.

I expected some heat discoloration but it has been very severer turning the whole device golden brown with blue patches. Interestingly on the surface of the lid where there was deposits of water there has been no discoloration, well silvery/blue patches only.

After reading a few articles on this site, is there a surface preparation technique such as chemical passivation or electropolishing that would create a thick clear oxide layer first that would protect the surface from subsequent discoloration when in use as a burner?

Lee Marsden
Product designer - Norwich, Norfolk, United Kingdom

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