We developed Multi-Etch in 1993 in order to use something safer than hydrofluoric acid to etch titanium. Although still considered hazardous, Multi-Etch has grown steadily for the last 15 years as the safer alternative. Not all uses of hydrofluoric have a safer alternative but using Multi-Etch to strip off the naturally-occuring oxide layer on titanium is a no-brainer. There are still companies that have been using HF for a long time and for those companies, we offer the following.
Rather than completely erasing the color, it
is possible to Multi-Etch the anodized item
and work backwards to the color you wanted.
It takes some practice and skill working
with this technique but it can produce the
colors you're after.
We've been experimenting with Multi-Etch and
have some new data to show for our efforts.
We tested heated as well as room temperature
Multi-Etch on additional grades of titanium
and on NiTiNol and retested many metals we
did in the past.
After cleaning a titanium sheet with
Multi-Etch, users can transfer the image
onto the titanium by ironing the film using
a lot of pressure. When the transfer is
complete, the resulting image turns from
blue to nearly black and is very durable.
If you're a small or large Multi-Etch user,
you know that it is important to stay
consistent with etch times. Here are some
helpful tips and links for checking and
improving the chemistry throughout the
lifetime of the etchant bath.