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Old 05-21-2012, 08:50 AM #1
rkhig
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Caswell Deep Red - Question! Please Help

So, Id consider myself extremely hobbyist learning the ropes at the moment. My partner and I (yes, extremely sexual I know) have done a few guns/batches and the colors have turned out fantastic. Learned a few tricks here and there about each individual color.... and thought we were onto something big here for a second up until last night... So I got the Deep Red from Caswell, some good looking red dye right? Well it came out a dusty cherry look. I had polished and cleaned the gun immaculately, and the second half of the gun we were doing came out this golden yellow which is what which is what we were trying to attain. So I know during the anodizing and cleaning we did everything right. The yellow, I couldn't be more proud of, for my skill level o'course! However, the red sat outside on paper towels while I strung up the yellow pieces. So, give or take, it sat there for 10 minutes maximum before it actually got into the red bath, probably less. Keep in mind, I was working by myself, which is undesirable at the moment. Anyways, the red wasnt taking very well at all. Normally, you know, you can put the piece in, pull it out and look at it and see the results for the most part. This red, not the case. I added 140f in the container for maybe 8 minutes prior to putting the parts in. Unplugged it. Put the parts in. Made sure they weren't touching the heater. Let them sit for 10 minutes. They didn't take. Then turned the heater on. Got better results but it was the beginning of this cherry/pinkish. After an hour of this BS, and considering it was hitting the 2am mark, I decided I would seal it and just went on with my business.

So TL;DR :

1. Has anyone messed with the Deep Red from Caswell

2. What color did yours come out when you did it?

3. I am wondering if my container was contaminated to throw off my results.
if
3a. what would cause it to come out cherry red instead of the deep red?

3b. I had washed the container out with water prior because I was changing dyes, and there was no residue at all in the tank.

3c. Assuming its best to minimize the time the recently anno'd parts - don't sit out of something.

4. Any tips to improve my process or have better results :p That can always be PM'd and greatly appreciated

5. I just wanted to say - FX anno, Bazooka Boy, AcidRain, XSV, probably more that I have forgotten and I apologize - you all are my idols, and if I could sacrifice my first unborn son in strength and anodizing knowledge/skill, I think I really really might have to consider it. Seriously though, any tips or knowledge for a silly college kid hobbyist would be superb.

Last edited by rkhig : 05-21-2012 at 09:31 AM.
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:14 AM #2
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Did you lay the piece on the paper towels after removing it from the anodizing tank? You should try to avoid this as the oxide layer may become crushed and essentially close off the small honeycomb structure that holds the dye. This may also happen if you man handle the pieces after they are removed from the anodizing bath and you get finger shaped spots that do not take dye well. Also, if you have not already sign up over at the Caswell Plating forums, many people over there that are extremely helpful, I know AcidRain is an active poster there.
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Old 05-21-2012, 09:24 AM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WKS01 View Post
Did you lay the piece on the paper towels after removing it from the anodizing tank? You should try to avoid this as the oxide layer may become crushed and essentially close off the small honeycomb structure that holds the dye. This may also happen if you man handle the pieces after they are removed from the anodizing bath and you get finger shaped spots that do not take dye well. Also, if you have not already sign up over at the Caswell Plating forums, many people over there that are extremely helpful, I know AcidRain is an active poster there.
I go through gloves like its no ones business. The paper towel things, we have thought of, but for the other parts it didnt mess up or leave marks like that at all. I have a hanging system, I just probably start using that. My partner has posted on the Caswell. I was just working the PBN angle. My fingers/skin does not touch the piece until 24 hours after its sat from sealing. From cleaning on, its gloves-on time.
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Old 05-21-2012, 10:02 AM #4
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What type of water are you using? Also, do you have any photos of the part that shows the color it came out as?
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Old 05-21-2012, 10:30 AM #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WKS01 View Post
What type of water are you using? Also, do you have any photos of the part that shows the color it came out as?
Distilled. I follow everything by the book. I will post the pics, the camera on my phone is wonky. Dont laugh, I am a fragile young man with high aspirations. But I havent quit my real job yet ;-) Nor have I stopped pimping myself out..



yes yes, I know there is a spot near the eye covers that didn't dye... that's what I get for having the GF clean it.. :-( (judgement should be displaced)



The color is harder to tell but it is like cherry coke red



then the yellow came out as intended.

Again, this pics were late last night without much light so the coloration is hard to tell. Damn circuit breaker in my room is wonky
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Old 05-21-2012, 11:06 AM #6
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That is what I was going to say. ^ Also what is the ph of the dye? (you can buy a cheap ph meter off ebay from china)

If you are crushing the matrix by laying it down you have something wrong. I have a towel that I lay down and lay the parts down. Hanging them is a good idea to.

What temp are you anodizing at? Acid concentration, ASF?



That is the deep red It was one of my first dyes and I've never had any issue with it. It was the deep red in powder form so prolly not from caswell. Its funny because I've never had any issues with my powder dyes, but caswells I have.
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Old 05-21-2012, 11:19 AM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xsvdynastypballa View Post
That is what I was going to say. ^ Also what is the ph of the dye? (you can buy a cheap ph meter off ebay from china)

If you are crushing the matrix by laying it down you have something wrong. I have a towel that I lay down and lay the parts down. Hanging them is a good idea to.

What temp are you anodizing at? Acid concentration, ASF?



That is the deep red It was one of my first dyes and I've never had any issue with it. It was the deep red in powder form so prolly not from caswell. Its funny because I've never had any issues with my powder dyes, but caswells I have.
140f for dyes, depending on the depth of colors. Anno tank around 68f is the goal. Where are you buying the powder dyes
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Old 05-21-2012, 11:20 AM #8
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ph of the dyes, I am not sure. I can check tonight.
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Old 05-21-2012, 12:11 PM #9
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I got them from this guy

http://www.focuser.com/atm/anodize/anodize.html

I wish I knew where he got them from they have always worked so well.

Sad he doesn't have more of a selection.

I'm not sure about the light fastness of them. Caswell has always boasted about the light fastness of their dyes.

All your temps sound good. Just as a test try going up 2 degrees in temp, Maybe adding some acid.

After you check the dye ph of coarse.

The splotch on the asa looks like drag over. You can fix the splotches by bleaching, 1min in acid, I like to let the part dry if I'm doing a solid color.

Don't forget rinsing ^^

http://forum.caswellplating.com/anod...ng-dye-ph.html

Use battery acid to go down and ammonia to go up in ph.
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Old 05-21-2012, 12:41 PM #10
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you mean I cant mix bleach and acid? Jk. super big joke. So you let it dry then do the dye again? Hmm. Never thought about that. Good point. Thanks for the links. We had looked at this guy before we went with Caswell. On my lunch break I got another thermo, its just hard to find those test strips in my small town. Thanks again for the advice. I am betting somehow it probably got contaminated. I am gonna do some test runs tonight with some scrap aluminum and see if the red is all fugly or if it was an anodizing mistake.
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Old 05-21-2012, 12:50 PM #11
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also my thought being, if it had been from laying down on something, not like they were thrown down or anything, wouldn't it just be affected on the side of impact? Just a thought.
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Old 05-21-2012, 12:53 PM #12
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XSV and WKS01, thanks for the help. I had to bail on hig early yesterday, so a lot of the blame i feel rests on me leaving.

We are using distilled water for everything except for the initial cleaning. All other rinses are with distilled water.
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:41 PM #13
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are you racking with aluminum? Also, my parts never get laid down, period. I hang everything. I too was having and issue with my red, but mines a powder. I was chilling my tanks too low, creating smaller pores. From what I read, some dies have larger molecules, so I ran some tests with the solution warmer and that fixxed the problem on my test subjects. Also, you can buy a infrared thermal laser @ Homedepot for $40. You need a ph meter, go to a hydroponics store, screw the strips, they are not as accurate. That will run roughly $100. As for dye, I buy them here, but they are pricey, they only sell minimum of 1 pound per.

http://www.usspecialty.com/product.php Tell them I sent you. Be prepared to spend though, I bought 4 dyes and cost me $221 for the unexpensive one, for example, hot pink alone is like 91 plus shipping. Lime green cost me $138, I had to buy 2 dyes and mix it myself.
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Old 05-21-2012, 01:56 PM #14
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This guy just likes to spend money ^^^ haha

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-pH-P...#ht_1640wt_659

this is the one I have. I expected the electrode to dry up and dye after a few times using it, but it hasn't!

Might not be as accurate as those 100 dollar meters, but .1 resolution is all you really need.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-LCD-...#ht_3973wt_884

This is what I use for my anodizing tank thermometer. Its only one deg higher than my expensive IR meter.

You guys should look on ebay for most of your stuff. I just bought an inline digital amp and volt meter in one + a shunt for 17 bucks!

200v 200a

I may have a bit of an addiction


Mario those must be where that focus user guy gets them! I think I might buy a few use what I need and sell the rest on ebay.
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:05 PM #15
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maybe we should just get in the business of making dyes.. those prices are ridiculous. I think I might be better off crushing berries with a rock and seeing how far that takes me. :-(

I am going to re do pieces tonight, maybe I can get a better idea of what happened.
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:06 PM #16
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^^^ the thermal couplers are famous for going bad, that why I use the infrared.

I also use this to test PH, works really good, not sure if it has all the calibration solutions.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/OAKTON-DIGIT...em27c72f 132a
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:13 PM #17
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We have gone through like 3 digital thermos in the past month. They just keep going bad. Not to mention, the heaters from Caswell as the biggest pieces of sh*t, ever. Needless to say, I ask and they resend me a set of three each time.

That being the next - heaters- any particular brand you recommend? something that is reliable?
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:22 PM #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xsvdynastypballa View Post
This guy just likes to spend money ^^^ haha

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-pH-P...#ht_1640wt_659

this is the one I have. I expected the electrode to dry up and dye after a few times using it, but it hasn't!

Might not be as accurate as those 100 dollar meters, but .1 resolution is all you really need.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Digital-LCD-...#ht_3973wt_884

This is what I use for my anodizing tank thermometer. Its only one deg higher than my expensive IR meter.

You guys should look on ebay for most of your stuff. I just bought an inline digital amp and volt meter in one + a shunt for 17 bucks!

200v 200a

I may have a bit of an addiction


Mario those must be where that focus user guy gets them! I think I might buy a few use what I need and sell the rest on ebay.
If ya got it, why not?
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:24 PM #19
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If ya got it, why not?
I remember reading in one of your threads about the amount you have put into it. But hey, if I had more cash laying around, I most certainly would.
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:33 PM #20
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I had a head start, Im a Gold/silver smith for a hobby, so I had all the buffing, vacuum systems in place, along with a **** load of tools.

As for dyes, I have 16 colors now and that cost roughly $1000. I didnt want to buy in 2 gallon increments for Caswell, as they are liquid, plus for a few dollars more I can have enough for 40 gallons so I have a way of refreshing the tanks. Plus, I read that Caswells are the greatest. I also was told by someone, that using RIT dyes will actually work, but I choose not to go that route.

I noticed that the yellow took very well for you, but the red didnt. Im thinking that the PH is the biggest concern for you, too high and the color retards, too low and the dye will actually remove the ano layer.

You really need to look into making a place to hang all parts and never let them touch anything. I, like you , anodize and seal and never touch for 24 hours.

Also, what are you using for degreaser?
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Old 05-21-2012, 02:43 PM #21
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ya-herrrd!!!....lol

I sealed the top of my probe with liquid electrical tape. Its lasted me over a year now and it stays in the bath wither its 95deg or 40deg

I don't see how it could go bad unless the acid got to the connection point.

Post pics of your result!
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