Etch Patterns on Metal With a Battery

About: I'm an engineering student from london and i have finally decided to share some of my interest's and build's for others like myself to enjoy

Here's a cool and easy way you can etch most metals such as knife's with simple ingredients found in every kitchen.

Teacher Notes

Teachers! Did you use this instructable in your classroom?
Add a Teacher Note to share how you incorporated it into your lesson.

Step 1: Video

check out the video and make sure to Subscribe to my Youtube channel:

Step 2: What You'll Need

All you need is something to etch,

-A battery 9-12v should do

-Some vinegar and salt

-A bawl

-Some wire and an earbud

- A pencil and a PCB marker (other types of markers might work)

Step 3: Drawing

Now take your pencil and draw the patterns you like and then go over it or around it with the PCB marker.

You can either etch negative or positive by going around the pencil sketch or over it. If you go over it you will etch the whole metal meaning only the section you have cover will keep its original shine and if you go around the pencil sketch you will only etch the pattern and keep the rest of the metal with its original finish.

Step 4: Mixture

Mix the salt and vinegar 50/50

Step 5: Connect Wires

Now connect the Positive wire from the battery to the object and negative to the earbud

Step 6: Applying

Now gently apply all over or just over the sketch depending on whether you chose negative or positive

Step 7: Cleaning

Use a wet sponge make sure it is wet or else it will scratch your metal and slowly scrub the marker off the metal and you have your etch!

Be the First to Share


    • Made with Math Contest

      Made with Math Contest
    • Cardboard Speed Challenge

      Cardboard Speed Challenge
    • Multi-Discipline Contest

      Multi-Discipline Contest

    8 Discussions


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Nice one!

    Not *that* useful but absolutely impressive!


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    errm you could say that. I believe the correct term for this is something like electrolytic etching or electrolyte etching if im not mistaking..


    Reply 5 years ago on Introduction

    No problem mate and make sure to take as much time as you can drawing the lines out for the best finish