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Want dip process for brightening bare aluminum

April 14, 2021

Q. Dear Sir/Madam,

We are a group manufacturing aluminium cookware in Kenya. We have a requirement for a brightening chemical for our finishing process.

Our products have a milky white finish and we want to achieve a glossy/shiny silver finish but not like Stainless steel.

Please advise if anyone can advice on suitable chemicals.
We do not do or intend to do anodizing, hence the brightening will be the last and finishing process.

Thank you.

Milind Majithia
- Mombasa, Kenya
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April 2021

A. Hi cousin. I see two potential issues involved with your question. First, bare aluminum can resist corrosion in favorable environments but is unlikely to have much corrosion resistance and to stay bright for long in a corrosive environment. Be sure to pick an aluminum alloy well suited to your requirements; pure aluminum is perfect for this, but its other properties may not suit you.

The second issue is that aluminum usually requires mechanical polishing to achieve brightness, not just a dip.

I think readers could offer you much better guidance if you explained more fully what your product is. If it's general pots and pans for home kitchens, I think you'll find the need to mechanically polish and buff them; plus I don't think you can use an aggressive and poisonous aluminum bright dip as your final process, simply rinsing the poison off of a food surface.

I've never been involved in aluminum cookware though, and hopefully a more knowledgable reader will chime in.

Luck & Regards,

pic of Ted Mooney
Ted Mooney, P.E. RET
Aloha -- an idea worth spreading
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey
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