Coatings for Aluminum - Lumiclad®

A comparison of Lumiclad® Electroless Black Oxide and Conventional Type II Black Anodizing

Finish Quality

Lumiclad Black Oxide Type II Black Anodizing
Durable, satin black molybdenum oxide Durable, satin black aluminum oxide
0.000060" thick (1.5 microns) 0.0004"-0.001" thick (10-25 microns)
Smooth, clean, scratch resistant Smooth, clean, scratch resistant
Durable finish: excellent handling properties Very hard, durable finish
Finish same hardness as base metal Finish harder than base metal
Interior or light exterior applications Interior or light exterior applications
40-100 hours salt spray resistance depending on sealant used 336+ hours salt spray resistance
Non-compliant with Mil Specs (different chemistry used) Used primarily for sales appeal Compliant with MIL-A-8625F
Electrically conductive Electrically non-conductive
Good base for paint, adhesives Good base for paint, adhesives
Black available only Wide range of colors available

Process Line

Lumiclad Black Oxide Type II Black Anodizing
Short process cycle: 30 minutes Long process cycle: 60-120 minutes
7 tanks: one heated 20 tanks: several heated and/or chilled
Electroless. No current flow needed.
(no electrical contact needed)
Electrolytic process. Spring clamp racks needed.
Non-dimensional coating. Heavy coating. Masking difficult/impossible.
Basket/barrel processing easy, economical Basket/barrel processing impossible
Easy to learn and operate effectively Difficult to learn. Experience needed.
Uses Ion Exchange to recycle rinsewater for
Zero-discharge operation.
Full Waste Treatment needed.

Operating Costs

Lumiclad Black Oxide Type II Black Anodizing
Low cost – less than $0.50 per square foot High cost: $5.00-8.00 per square foot plus freight both ways.

Corporate Concerns

In-house Lumiclad Black Oxide Line Sending Work Out For Black Anodizing
30-minute turnaround Requires 3-4 day turnaround
Streamlines workflow Hinders workflow
Lowers inventory levels and costs Requires higher inventory levels
Accelerates shipment schedules Slows shipment schedules
Allows for speedy customer service Makes key customers wait

Process Steps

Lumiclad Black Oxide Type II Black Anodizing
  1. Micro-Etch Clean: Room Temp; 8 min
  2. Rinse: 30 sec
  3. Apply Primer: Room Temp: 8 min
  4. Rinse: 30 sec
  5. Black Oxide: 200° F; 10 min
  6. Rinse: 30 sec
  7. Seal: Room Temp; 1 min
  1. Soak Clean: 160° F; 5 min
  2. Rinse: 30 sec
  3. Caustic Etch: 160° F; 1 min
  4. Rinse: 30 sec
  5. Rinse: 30 sec
  6. Desmut: Room Temp; 3-5 min
  7. Rinse: 30 sec
  8. Rinse: 30 sec
  9. Anodize: 68-72° F; 15-60 min
  10. Rinse: 30 sec
  11. Rinse: 30 sec
  12. Dye: 160°F; 5-30 min
  13. Rinse: 30 sec
  14. Rinse: 30 sec
  15. Seal: 190° F; 15-60 min
  16. Rinse: 190° F; 5-15 min
One heated tank Six heated/chilled tanks
30 minute Process Time 45-180 minute Process Time
No Rectifier needed Rectifier needed: electrolytic reaction