This tutorial will show you how to etch your own designs/labels into aluminum panels with a reusable acid mix instead of using electricity(the most common method).
It's a pretty good and cheaper alternative to profesional made panels for your home made synths, stomp boxes, etc. :)
As with any work involving dangerous materials, you'll have to be very careful and take any precautions needed if you are going to try this instructable.
If in doubt, don't do it!, and if you do it anyway and get hurt, don't blame me or this website, you have been warned ;)
Acid can burn holes into your skin, wear some protective clothing, gloves, eye protection and gas mask with the appropriate filter designed for acids before handling it!
When the acid mix reacts with the aluminum it starts to produce acid vapours that of course are dangerous to your nose and lungs so by any means, DON'T breath that!
If you feel like this is too much for you to handle, you are probably right and is time to stop reading this and look some place else, otherwise let's move on:
Step 1: Materials
List of materials:
-Some aluminum panel/s
-A nice design for the etching
-Laser printer w/ black ink
-Some pnp-blue sheets
-Eye protection glasses
-Hydrochloric acid (same thing as as muriatic acid)
-Hydrogen peroxide (same thing as oxygenated water)
-A shallow plastic container to mix the peroxide with the acid (2:1 mix, depending on the peroxide concentration you may need to change the mix, I used 11vol. peroxide)
- Another container with water to rinse the panel.
-***Extremely well vented work area*** try this only if you have access to any open and well vented area, the process creates some probably dangerous, and bad smelling fumes, beware!!!
-running water(avoid any metal tool/surface... metal kitchen sink is a no-no, unless you like to spend some $ on repairs )