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Thread: Effective scale removal from aluminium?

  1. #1
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    Effective scale removal from aluminium?

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    I've got a few old Atomic's which I am restoring for my own collection but am having a real hard time getting the scale out of them.

    So far I've tried:

    Standard citric acid solution I use for descaling steel, copper and brass (1 tbsp per 1lt)
    Strong citric acid solution (3 tbsp per 1lt)
    Commercial Cafetto descaler
    Vinegar

    All solutions have been added into the Atomic when very hot then left overnight. It's then reheated and agitated then left for a few more hours. In all attempts so far, only about 10-20% of the scale has been removed. There is still a lot of white, lumpy scale on the aluminium.

    I'm not sure why these solutions aren't working. Should I just increase the concentrations or perhaps is there a better chemical or procedure that can be used when descaling aluminium?

  2. #2
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Hmmm...

    Sounds like something that Lyrebird could answer for you.
    Hopefully he spots the thread or maybe you could PM him...

    Mal.

  3. #3
    Senior Member Lyrebird's Avatar
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    Hi there.

    Pounds to peanuts the white deposits are not scale, given their recalcitrant nature they are more likely to be aluminium oxide. To my knowledge the best method of removing this is mechanical cleaning. Few things attack aluminium oxide and you really don't want to be playing with any of the ones that do.
    Dimal likes this.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lyrebird View Post
    Hi there.

    Pounds to peanuts the white deposits are not scale, given their recalcitrant nature they are more likely to be aluminium oxide. To my knowledge the best method of removing this is mechanical cleaning. Few things attack aluminium oxide and you really don't want to be playing with any of the ones that do.
    That would explain why it's not coming off after repeated attempts. I read that some people put small ball bearings inside and shake them around to dislodge the white stuff, I'm not sure if I want to do that. I might just leave it as is.



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