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Best process to color stainless steel eyeglass frames?

An ongoing discussion beginning back in 2012 ...

March 26, 2012

Q. Hi ... I am creating a collection of eyewear made entirely of stainless steel.
The pieces will be stamped out overseas and brought back to the US to be colored. I am having a hard time trying to find a way to color them. Does anyone know what the process is called or what questions I should ask? I want to know that I can have the front painted red (for example) and the back painted purple. I contacted a powder coater who told me it would be to thick and we wouldn't be able to put the screws or lenses in afterwards. I spoke to an electroplater who told me that they only do basic colours (black, gold, antique gold, etc) and should try to speak to a jewelry plater. I spoke to an anodizer that told me that it wouldn't work (can't remember the reason).
So they need to be chip free (at least for 4 years) and can withstand heat, wear and tear, sweat, etc. and be hypo allergenic. I know it can be done as I sell a very colorful collection, but what is the process?
Thanks for all your help in advance

Andrea Gotti
Designer - New York, New York, USA

March 28, 2012

A. Andrea,

In the posting Letter 24520 I have placed a photo of the colors that can be obtained on stainless steel. The anodized film does not change the dimensions, stable in heat, open air, tear and sweat.

Anna Berkovich
Russamer Lab
supporting advertiser
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
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November 18, 2017

Q. Hi All,

I am in the process of creating glasses from stainless steel and certain parts are silver soldered. I would love recommendations on how to get a great finish on both the frames and ear pieces. They have solder residue, heat discolouration and are dull in general. I was thinking a polishing mop, but would love your advice. Based in the U.K.

thanks in advance!


James Green
Maker - London, England

November 20, 2017

A. To my knowledge most eyeglass frames are polished in mass finishing equipment. The finishing media is usually dry organic products with a polishing compound for normally long periods. If your solder is rough, you may need to go to a more abrasive media product first. Equipment is determined mostly by quantity.

tony kenton
AF Kenton
retired business owner - Hatboro, Pennsylvania

January 8, 2018

A. For polishing metal spectacle frames, mass finishing is a very good option. The frames need to be fixed in a fixture to prevent entanglement and the sides can be finished in Centrifugal Finishing with special barrels so that the sides do not bend and the edges are also smoothed out.

- Thane, Maharashtra, India

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