everhack Stuff I've been messing with, or just thinking about.

5Feb/110

Etched Beer Cans

Okay here's another fun process I discovered today!

Take an aluminum can and carefully cut it open and make the largest, flattest rectangle you can out of it.

Design a project where at least one layers is a "draw" layer, and one layer the "cut" layer.

Secure the aluminum, inside up, to a very sticky cutting pad. Best to secure the ends to the mat with some clear packing tape.

Using any old used blade, cut the "draw" layer on blade depth 6 pressure 3, just one pass.

Next, cut the "cut" layer on blade depth 6 pressure max, multicut 2 passes.

Remove the aluminum from the mat (carefully so you don't curl or crease it up any worse), and drop in a Metal Salt etching bath. Etch it, checking occasionally, until the straight lines of the "cut" layer start to break free. Let it go just a little longer and remove from the bath. Wash well in soapy water and dry well. Starting at the straight areas, find a starting point where the cut line has parted, and use your fingers to finish separating the pieces.

I like this because it's like print & cut, without alignment hassles. It also gives you a way of drawing fine lines with the blade that don't have the tiny jitters you get with fine point pens. The double cut lines will etch clean through the metal while the single cut lines just turn really dark gray.

-David

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