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  1. #1
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    Getting silver *brakes* anodized black?

    Has anyone here ever gotten their silver aluminum polished components anodized black?

    I'm lusting after these super burly long-reach brakes on VeloOrange, but they're polished silver, and won't match my Rival group. I'm building a custom bike, and want everything just *so*, so I'm willing to see what it would take to make these brakes work.

    I know anodizing can affect the thickness of surfaces, so... is this even possible to do on brakes after-market, or will it require re-tapping all the screw holes, re-machining all the moving surfaces, etc.? Or is that something that can be anticipated for and worked around?

    What type of place should I go to for this? Say, a custom motorcycle fabrication/machine shop? Anyone done this that can recommend a place by name?

    Any info would be appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2
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    I doubt there would be much impact on the brake. Even if you have to re-tap, those are cheap tools, and generally useful. Around here the reamers are a little more expensive. You could contact people in the yellow pages. Another option are places that handle gunsmithing. You can anodize at home and there are several videos on the subject. Requires nasty acids. Probably there are youtube videos also. I think it would certainly pay to get something off the rack in black like Paul Racers.

  3. #3
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    Tektro R710's, 730's or 736's maybe.

  4. #4
    Randomhead
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    I believe the old anodizing should be removed. I think people do this with lye, there has been discussion in C&V about that. Once you are done, polish them up and send off to an anodizer.

  5. #5
    Steel Ferrite's Avatar
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    As far as I know you don't need to do anything except take ALL of the steel/stainless parts off so there is only ALUMINUM parts left to be anodized. Then the parts are soaked in a acid bath (can't remember if it's sulfuric or nitric or what) which breaks down the oxides and anything else. Then they anodized it in a 25% sulfuric acid bath. The longer the darker the anodizing. I would stay away from the clear anodizing with dyes since they do fade over time. The above described anodizing method is military grade and the toughest out there.

  6. #6
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    PeterPan, Ferrite, thanks for the replies. Those are useful. I'm hoping to find someone who does this stuff for a living to do, I have no intention of mucking with expensive parts and acids and what-not.

    jmichael, tried 'em, they're spongy.
    unterhausen, I appreciate the attempt, but read the Velo Orange description again. ;-)

  7. #7
    Randomhead
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    I missed the part that they weren't anodized. They look like they would need to be polished before they would look good anodized.

    One problem is that anodizing is never cheap until you find a competent person that is doing it as a hobby. Here is a place that a lot of yo-yo fanatics use

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    I missed the part that they weren't anodized. They look like they would need to be polished before they would look good anodized.

    One problem is that anodizing is never cheap until you find a competent person that is doing it as a hobby. Here is a place that a lot of yo-yo fanatics use
    Oooh, good link. Yeah, that is pricey, but when I think about the hassle I'd be taking it on to do it myself - I live in an apartment so no garage, space is at a premium - it's not so bad.

    You know what's really weird? I've seen a few sites that have custom anodizing, and they've been related to stuff like paintball, telescopes and (IMO) niche hobbies like that. Been hard to find a place that's specifically related to bikes or (oddly enough) even motorcycles.

  9. #9
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    Oven cleaner will remove anodizing

  10. #10
    Insane Bicycle Mechanic Jeff Wills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by schnee View Post
    What type of place should I go to for this? Say, a custom motorcycle fabrication/machine shop? Anyone done this that can recommend a place by name?

    Any info would be appreciated. Thanks.
    Check in the phone book (remember those?) under "industrial coating" or "plating". A lot of plating places also do anodizing.

    Here in the Portland area, I took several pairs of cranks to Anodizing Specialties . I had buffed out some scratches and I wanted the original anodizing restored. They did a good job of restoring the silver anodizing: http://home.comcast.net/~jeff_wills/...ning%20005.htm

    Definitely ask about cost- usually there's a minimum charge. It was worth it to me since I had 4 pairs of crankarms to do, and the charge was $50.
    Jeff Wills

    All my bikes.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeff Wills View Post
    Check in the phone book (remember those?) under "industrial coating" or "plating". A lot of plating places also do anodizing.
    I did that once on a seatpost, and they dipped it in a huge anodizing pool that I guess was dirty - because it came out terrible.

    I mean, I got the part polished at a machine shop, wiped it down with a recommended cleaner (I forget which one now), and gave it to 'em in an hour. When it came back, it was cloudy, uneven, and bad.

    I'm hoping I can find a place that's more of a 'custom refinisher' so I'm guaranteed it will look nice.

  12. #12
    Randomhead
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    The yo-yo fanatic that gave me that link said that they charged him less than the price on the website. I wouldn't really worry about finding a bicycle specific anodizer, doubt that is going to happen anyway.

  13. #13
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    You could always buy a Campagnolo Centaur group so that the silver fits in better (or the first Rival group was polished silver too)

  14. #14
    bike whisperer Kimmo's Avatar
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    You won't need to tap any threads or anything because anodising doesn't make parts any larger.

    In fact, the opposite IIRC, so don't get em done for too long.

  15. #15
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    Sweet.

    I'm leaving for Yamaguchi's course next weekend, so all this is going to start to come to fruition soon. Frame in a month, probably another month for the paint and getting the bike together.

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