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Which acid?

  1. Feb 4, 2006 #1
    Hi.

    Is there any acid that will cut through Aliuminium (1mm thin).
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 4, 2006 #2

    mrjeffy321

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    Yes, lots of acids will react with Aluminum, but depending on which type of acid and its concentration, the speed it reacts will varry.
     
  4. Feb 4, 2006 #3
    Like aluminum foil?
     
  5. Feb 4, 2006 #4
    Most likely, although aluminum foil may be slightly thinner than 1mm.
     
  6. Feb 4, 2006 #5
    well. it is actually a side panel of a computer case. (I want to nake a hole through it. put some letters on it.) what can I use to cover the places that I dont want destroyed?

    I know this depends on the type of acid, but what can I use with a acid that is available to public?

    cheers
     
  7. Feb 4, 2006 #6

    mrjeffy321

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    So you want to eat holes through an Aluminum computer case with acid...sounds like a fun Saturday night to me.

    A very commonly availble and cheap acid is Hydrochloric acic (HCl). I buy it at home improvement stores (like Home Depot or Lowes), it is sold as "muriatic acid" and used to lower the pH of pools.
    The acid right out of the bottle is roughly 31% by weight, which is about 12 Molar...this is some pretty strong acid and you should be careful (as you should with any acid).

    Basically, any where on the computer case where bare metal is exposed is a potential place for the acid (or fumes from the acid) to react. If you strip the paint off the places you want to eat through, this will give you a good place to start the reaction. Once the acid starts reacting however, it can start eating away in all directions.
    I dont know how successful you will be in this endevour, but it will make a great story to those who ask you "What did you do to your computer!".
     
  8. Feb 4, 2006 #7
    Use Stationary contact transparent plastic over the area, then with an exacto knife cut out what design you want, then after the acid has eaten through, carefully wash the Acidic area until all acid is dissolved, Then by removing the contact plastic you will have a design left behind by the acids etching properties.

    This is a technique we used for Hydrofluoric Acid on a surface to be etched.

    I do not think HCL will eat the stationary Contact plastic.

    Try a drop of HCL on the contact plastic adhesive and see if it reacts.:bugeye:
     
  9. Feb 4, 2006 #8
    my english is not too great. what sort of plastic is that? (just everyday use plastic?) also once the acid moves through the foil will it just move through or will it move towards sides too?

    the good thing is I have an old case which I can test it on :)
     
  10. Feb 4, 2006 #9

    mrjeffy321

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    I think he is talking about a special type of plastic that will stick to what you place it on, effectivly protecting it.

    But the problem remains that once the acic eats it way below any type of covering on metal, it will not only react with the metal below it, but also beside it, enlarging the hole. The availible surface area of metal to react with the acid will be much much smaller in the sides than on the bottom, but if you leave it on there too long, the effects may be noticble.
     
  11. Feb 5, 2006 #10
    Would It be better to just make a hole (similar to shape I want but with smaller size) and then finish the reset with a sharp matal sissors?


    EDIT: would it take more than a few seconds to react and cut the aliuminium surface? maybe wash it after afew seconds to remove any side effects?
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2006
  12. Feb 5, 2006 #11

    mrjeffy321

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    It will take more than a few seconds for the Acid to eat through the Aluminum. The speed of thr reaction will greatly depend on the concentration of the acid.
    It is hard to say how much time it will take, you might want to do a small test on a scrap piece of Aluminnum to get a feel for how long it will take.
     
  13. Feb 7, 2006 #12

    Borek

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    Saw, scissors and file will be faster and more accurate. Start making a hole with a drill.
     
  14. Feb 8, 2006 #13
    You could always easily make some royal water :devil: and use it to make a hole in your computer. :rofl:
     
  15. Feb 8, 2006 #14

    Borek

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    Staff: Mentor

    Still drill will be faster and easier to operate ;)
     
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