Anodizing

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by John R., Oct 27, 2009.

  1. John R.

    John R. Member

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    I've got a Galvin 6x9 (long bellows version). Bought it brand new in 1978, camera number three. Over the years the paint finish has worn away on the edges of the standards and some other areas. I want to disassemble it and get the components refinished with black anodizing. This Galvin is kind of special because I sent it to Jim Galvin many, many years ago and had it upgraded. It's great, simple little camera made in America, a icon in view camera history. So, a high quality anodizing is important to me. I considered SK Grimes but they are awfully expensive on things anymore, they would just ship the parts out anyway and mark up the service. Anybody have any anodizing done that you were very pleased with? What's your sources?
     
  2. John Koehrer

    John Koehrer Subscriber

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    There are some DIY solutions at gun sites on line.
    It seems much like chrome or nickel plating but for the chemistry.
    Lauer weaponry seems to have an assortment.
     
  3. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    You say the paint finish has warn away. Are these particular parts actually painted? What sort of metal are the parts?
     
  4. Greg Davis

    Greg Davis Member

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    If you search online for how to anodize at home, there is a website that has an instruction book and offers the service.
     
  5. richard ide

    richard ide Member

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    Some aluminum alloys anodize well. Some produce a real mess.
     
  6. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    +1

    Tried re-anodizing a M/C master cylinder. Came out blotchy. I think the type of alloy and metal finish make a big difference in how it turns out.
     
  7. RalphLambrecht

    RalphLambrecht Subscriber

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    I like cameras with a bit of patina. It gives them character!
     
  8. Mark Fisher

    Mark Fisher Subscriber

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    If it is all wrought material (no castings), you should be able get a good anodized surface from them. 2000 series alloys are more difficult to get a good appearing anodized finish due to it's high copper content, but it is possible. My guess is that it is either 5000 series or 6000 series aluminum. You should be able to find a local anodizer who could do the work or do it yourself. I've had lots of parts anodized from different anodizers and only had problems with 2024T4 and castings. My favorite is Pioneer Metal Finishing, but they would not take that small of a job. The trick is finding a small place that will do your small job. Maybe you could simply call SK Grimes and ask who they send anodizing work to.
     
  9. John R.

    John R. Member

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    Thanks for all the feedback on this. I really am not certain which alloy the aluminum components are machined from. Since the camera was fabricated in the late 1970's I would guess the alloy is not a 6000 series but maybe bordering on 5000 series. I don't know the history of those particular alloys. I would be skeptical of the 2000 series but never say never. The camera does have some components that could be machined billet or finish machined castings, such as the runners for the front and rear standards. I think parts of the back are cast, they don't seem machined in a couple places, hard to tell for sure. I do have the original brochure filed away so I'll dig it and out and see if Jim made mention of any of the technical aspects about the metal. I have also considered powder coating the parts. The problem with powder coating is the film thickness build up, it may be a issue with the tolerances between components. I also thought about just refinishing with a automotive two part urethane finish, maybe an alloy wheel urethane for toughness. There are also marine and aircraft urethanes but then I would have to use a flattening agent and test it to get the sheen right. Don't think I would want to deal with anodizing myself but I'll check out that anodizing website.
     
  10. Curt

    Curt Subscriber

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    If it isn't affecting the performance of the camera I'd leave it alone and enjoy it as it is.