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  1. #1
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    removing laser etching

    Does anyone know how to safely remove the white laser etched Chris King logo from a CK headset.

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    Listen to me powers2b's Avatar
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    Laser etching is only a few thousandsth deep and could be removed by sanding/filing.
    Enjoy

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    Those headsets are anodized, if I used fine steel wool would it damage the finish ?

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    Listen to me powers2b's Avatar
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    Oh, you want to remove the logo AND still have a pretty HS.....
    In that case my friend you have a couple options.
    1. Live with it.
    2. Remove logo abrasively then use alodine to protect the now exposed Al.
    3. Send the part out to have the anodize removed and re-anodized. The Acid treatment used to remove the anodize will most likely also remove the logo.

    Enjoy

  5. #5
    Senior Member capwater's Avatar
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    Black Sharpie, $1.09, CVS.

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    Sometimes knows stuff. rmfnla's Avatar
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    Older CK headsets did not have that etching; perhaps you can find a decent one used or NOS on ebay.

    Aluminum is not easy to polish well. I guarantee if you start messing with the finish you will not be happy with the results.
    Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...

  7. #7
    Cycle Dallas MMACH 5's Avatar
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    If you go the sanding, refinishing route, just a few points:

    1. You will have to paint the piece, since as mentioned, polishing aluminum is rather difficult.

    2. Sand the entire piece. You won't be able to match the original finish on the area you sand.

    3. Use three thin coats of primer; one coat of self-etching primer and two coats of regular primer.

    4. Paint it with two thin coats of spray paint. If you lay on enough that it drips, you'll be disappointed with the results.

    Good luck.
    That's gonna leave a mark.

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    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rmfnla
    Aluminum is not easy to polish well. I guarantee if you start messing with the finish you will not be happy with the results.
    I disagree. You just need a cotton wheel, some rouge and something with a lot of torque to spin the wheel.
    I chuck mine in a drill press. You have to apply quite a bit of pressure on the wheel. I start with 220 grit emery paper and work up to 600. Rouge will remove the scratches from the 600 grit. You can use a pad sander on some parts. I can make a black seatpost look like chrome in about 20 minutes (I polish only the part that shows). It may take you a little longer. I've had some practice. I polished my first set of valve covers in the '60s (312 T-Bird).

    I dislike logos, so I strip and polish a lot of parts. Bare aluminum dulls quickly, especially if you touch it, so you have to polish it often. I use Mother's, but I'm sure there are lots of other good products.

    Aluminum bike parts don't need a protective coating, it just makes them easier to live with. All of the aluminum parts on my '70s French bikes are bare and they still look like new, at least right after I polish them.

  9. #9
    Senior Member duckliondog's Avatar
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    Why don't you just get a different headset that doesn't have a logo on it? I don't see the point of having Chris King stuff if it isn't pretty and anodized.

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    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by duckliondog
    Why don't you just get a different headset that doesn't have a logo on it? I don't see the point of having Chris King stuff if it isn't pretty and anodized.
    Same here. The other thing to consider is part of the reason they're so expensive is due to the warranty they carry. You can even send it back if you decide you don't like the color years after purchase. Removing the logo would void the warranty toot sweet

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    The solution, green sharpie (its a green headset). It doesnt completely get rid of the logo, but its pushed back enough that it looks pretty cool. The sharpie plan seemed best after I contacted the CK folks and this is what they had to say: "The laser etching on the cups can not be removed. The white is the lower surface of the anodized coating which is exposed after the colored portion has been removed. Below the logo is the silver raw aluminum. Exposing raw aluminum would allow corrosion to set in to the parts. Thank you for your support and have a good day". Thank for everyones input, it was helpful.

  12. #12
    "Uh-uh. Respek Knuckles." hypersnazz's Avatar
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    Apparently the new high-tech ultrasonic parts cleaners will take logos off certain components. We called around a few shops that had 'em when we went shopping for a new solvent tank for our store, more than one shop said their ultrasonic cleaner would scrub logos off crank arms, derailleurs, anything you left in there too long.

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    2-Cyl, 1/2 HP @ 90 RPM slvoid's Avatar
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    If you get yourself on a auto rotating lapper with 10 micron diamond paste, you can polish the CK to a shiny jewelry quality finish.

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    Cycle Dallas MMACH 5's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dminus22
    --snip-- Exposing raw aluminum would allow corrosion to set in to the parts. --/snip--
    Does aluminum corrode?
    That's gonna leave a mark.

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    Senior Member spunkyruss's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MMACH 5
    Does aluminum corrode?
    Yes, aluminum does corrode. Aluminum is so highly reactive that it does not naturally occur as the free metal, despite being the most abundant metal in the earth's crust.

    The shiny surface of raw aluminum quickly corrodes to dull, whitish-colored aluminum oxide. Aluminum oxide is very non-reactive, and the thin layer of aluminum oxide on the surface of the part prevents further corrosion of the aluminum beneath it.

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    I'm late to this discussion but I gotta ask, why do you want to remove the Chris King logo? People pay a huge premium just to be able to display it on their bikes.

    Maybe there will be a thread on "How do I etch a CK logo on my FSA headset?"

  17. #17
    Klaatu barada nikto cascade168's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dminus22
    Does anyone know how to safely remove the white laser etched Chris King logo from a CK headset.
    I'm pretty sure that Peter White was selling CK headsets without any logos. He said that he had a limited number, so when they're gone that's it.

    I know that does not solve your problem, but it's an alternative solution with same end (at the cost of a new headset, of course).

    See this page:

    http://www.peterwhitecycles.com/headsets.asp

    and, you can also see Peter's lovely wife, Linda ;-)
    "Work is the curse of the drinking class."
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  18. #18
    Senior Member Grand Bois's Avatar
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    I just spent a couple of hours turning an ugly set of Dia Compe 983 brakes into things of beauty. I used a pad sander with 220 grit and then a couple of grades of steel wool and then buffed with rouge on a cotton wheel. They look like I had them chromed.

    The rims, hubs cranks, bars, stem, brakes and seatpost on my Gitane TdF are all bare unprotected aluminum and they're 35 years old. There are no signs of corrosion on any of the parts. You don't have to worry about corrosion as long as you polish the parts once in a while.

    http://community.webshots.com/photo/...15654223LpNOlK

  19. #19
    Senior Member af895's Avatar
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    If it's laser etched, you're not going to "remove" it at all - you'd only be sanding down surrounding areas so the logo isn't as visible. A better option if it's etched is to remove all the anodizing as bare aluminum will make the logo far less conspicuous.

    I don't know how the logos are placed on the Chris King headsets, however, I have some experience with removing silk-screening.

    First, try a standard, pink eraser. You might test this on an inconspicuous area to make sure it doesn't take the anodizing off - usually it doesn't.

    Next step up is to try a blue, abrasive pen eraser. Be VERY cautious with this as it's much more likely to remove the anodizing.

    Finally, if you don't mind having a bare aluminum headset, BLEACH!

    Household bleach will remove anodizing from aluminum. Soak the part in it. Rinse with water when done and dry thoroughly.
    Last edited by af895; 12-04-05 at 09:51 AM.

  20. #20
    mousse de chocolat Moose's Avatar
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    ammonia and bleach are not the same thing and absolutey should not be mixed!!!

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by powers2b
    Laser etching is only a few thousandsth deep and could be removed by sanding/filing.
    Enjoy
    From 1989 to 2002 I was a wholesale distributor in the knife business. We had thousands of knives laser etched for special orders. I can tell you on steel it is very very difficult to sand down a blade to remove laser etching. Maybe aluminum is easier. That's why lasers are used in etching because they are cheap in large runs and very permanent. Good luck


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    Senior Member DannoXYZ's Avatar
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    Easy way to remove the anodizing is to use oven-cleaner (sodium-hydroxide). Spray on, let sit for 10-15 minutes, scrub off with scotch-brite pad. If the laser-etching was deeper than the bare-aluminium surface after you've removed the anodizing, then you're gonna have to sand some more...

    That's a lot of work, I say just spray-paint it...

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by DannoXYZ
    Easy way to remove the anodizing is to use oven-cleaner (sodium-hydroxide). Spray on, let sit for 10-15 minutes, scrub off with scotch-brite pad.
    Sodium hydroxide not only strips the anodizing, it dissolves the base aluminum (and, incidentally, your skin) too. Be very careful using it. You can distroy the parts if you aren't very diligent.

  24. #24
    Senior Member af895's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Moose
    ammonia and bleach are not the same thing and absolutey should not be mixed!!!
    I edited my original post - "whatever" household laundry bleach is, it seems to take off anodizing. I certainly don't advocate mixing it with any other chemicals, household or otherwise.

  25. #25
    Sometimes knows stuff. rmfnla's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dirtdrop
    I disagree. You just need a cotton wheel, some rouge and something with a lot of torque to spin the wheel.
    I chuck mine in a drill press. You have to apply quite a bit of pressure on the wheel. I start with 220 grit emery paper and work up to 600. Rouge will remove the scratches from the 600 grit. You can use a pad sander on some parts. I can make a black seatpost look like chrome in about 20 minutes (I polish only the part that shows). It may take you a little longer. I've had some practice. I polished my first set of valve covers in the '60s (312 T-Bird).

    I dislike logos, so I strip and polish a lot of parts. Bare aluminum dulls quickly, especially if you touch it, so you have to polish it often. I use Mother's, but I'm sure there are lots of other good products.

    Aluminum bike parts don't need a protective coating, it just makes them easier to live with. All of the aluminum parts on my '70s French bikes are bare and they still look like new, at least right after I polish them.
    Exactly.
    Today, I believe my jurisdiction ends here...

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