What Is an Anodized Ring?

Jay Leone
Jay Leone
Woman holding a book
Woman holding a book

Anodized rings have undergone an electrochemical treatment process to form an oxide layer on their surfaces. Aluminum is perhaps the most widely anodized metal used in the creation of rings. Anodizing a ring offers many benefits, including increasing the ring's overall corrosion and wear resistance. A ring that has undergone the anodizing process can easily be dyed any number of colors including red, yellow, green, and blue. The whole anodizing process requires constant monitoring, precise chemical concentration, and temperature control.

The anodizing process involves immersing a batch of rings or other metallic objects into a sulfuric acid bath. These baths can contain around a 15 percent concentration of sulfuric acid. When an electrical current is run through these baths, an oxide film forms on the surface of the objects. Since these oxide layers are relatively porous, dyes are easily accepted. The porous oxide coating left from the anodizing process must receive a proper coat of sealant to prevent the layer from rubbing off with abrasion over time.

Many benefits accompany the anodizing process. An anodized ring is very resistant to corrosion and will not rust in the presence of excess moisture. The anodizing process increases the ring's overall resistance to abrasion, durability, and resistance to wear.

Anodizing a metal such as aluminum creates an oxide layer on the metal's surface. Inking, dyeing, or staining a metal ring becomes much easier on anodized surfaces. Absorptive dyeing and electrolytic coloring are just two of the coloring methods employed after the anodizing process to give metal rings a variety of different colors.

An aluminum anodized ring is traditionally stronger and harder than an untreated aluminum ring. The oxide layer on an anodized ring can be very thick and dramatically increase the overall hardness of the ring. An aluminum ring with a heavy oxide coating can offer nearly the same hardness as sapphire or ruby. Oxide layers as thin as 0.0003 inch (8 micrometers) can also be applied to the surface of a ring.

Materials such as aluminum used in the creation of an anodized ring get heat-treated, rinsed, and etched before the whole anodizing process even takes place. Etching involves using a caustic soda such as sodium hydroxide to chemically remove a very thin layer of material. The process of anodizing a ring in a sulfuric acid solution after etching can take upwards of 60 minutes, depending on the type of metal used in the construction of the ring.

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