Fooling with aluminum cards and tags

One of my neighbors has a sign with a catchy maxim on it so I thought I’d make a neighborhood card and tag for fun.

Both are double sided, those are front and back respectively.

I got the materials from and I’m fairly pleased with the way they turned out.

I will say that the material edges are a bit rough. The ring lord is very inexpensive, you can see why when you get your order. I’d order from them again but only for things where you don’t need top quality.


Love the way anodized aluminum comes out.


silly question but is the anodizing on those tags conductive?

Probably? Let’s see what a multimeter says.

Well isn’t that interesting, the multimeter says no, not conductive. No continuity, not even a resistance registering. Looks like anodization is an insulator… let’s see what google says.

Random google result confirms.

I don’t know how strong the resistance is, you might want to look up its dielectric constant if you have a concern there. Also, it’s prone to scratching a bit, I don’t know how deep the scratch would need to be to expose the conductive substrate.


Aluminum is conductive but oxidizes quickly, and the oxidation is non-conductive.

It is used in wiring but the connectors break through the oxidation and prevent it at the contact points.

Anodization is also an oxide, so provides some degree of insulation. You wouldn’t want to count on it for safety.


Not generally in homes due to mechanical creep and fire risks, from what I recall.

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I wonder if it could be used as a mask for electo etching tags after engraving?

Not for general wiring in homes today, yes. It is still used for main drops and dryers, high power appliances, etc.

My ex’s was built in '58 and has a ton of aluminum, including the main underground supply.

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You’d have to move fast, unless the liquid prevents oxidation.

It will oxidize in water.

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We use a lot copper coated aluminum for grounding in my indistry, but thats seems to be one of the few applications beyond a terminal block or buss bar

The cut edges of the card would be a problem, they are bare metal. And it’s not clear if the engraved areas are conductive, I didn’t test that, and my test pieces are up in the house, not down in lasertown so I can’t check it.

Get it burning and toss in water, but have lots of protection. It will yank the oxygen right out of the hydrogen. As the British discovered in the Falklands dust up. That great idea they had of making military battleships in aluminum turned out to not be such a good idea after all.

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I think those turned out very nice. The things I have gotten from the ring lord are pretty comparable to Chewbarka’s stuff. Yes the edges are a bit sharp, but for the price I think it is a pretty good deal.


Aluminum wiring was still being used in homes into at least the late 1960s. They make oxidation preventative goop for connecting modern switches, outlets, fixtures, etc. to it.

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Anodizing actually forms a non-conductive layer of aluminum oxide, its like ceramic. It is done in a 15% sulfuric acid and distilled water bath with low current DC electricity. When finished, the ceramic will accept a dye for color.
I bead blasted a used aluminum shotgun upper receiver, cleaned it, got a battery refill kit from AutoZone, diluted the acid to the proper mix, added a big aluminum plate to the bottom of the bucket. (Cathode must be larger than the anode / the piece you are anodizing.) I ran 12v DC from an Astron power supply to the shotgun receiver for several hours. it came out beautifully. I made a bath of RIT clothing dye, heated it on the stove to 100 degrees. dipped the part in there for 15 minutes, then boiled in clean water for 30 mins, and it is perfect. I did the rest of the shotgun and parkerized the ferris metals. I added a tactical stock and turned a used turkey shotgun into a very practical home defense shotgun.
For those interested: