Anodizing Clinic: Technical References for Anodizing

Q. Are there any books or other resources that you could recommend for me to read and keep on hand as references?

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Q. I have been working as a chemist at an anodizing plant for a few months now and this is my first experience in this industry. Are there any books or other resources that you could recommend for me to read and keep on hand as references, mainly for troubleshooting appearance issues?

A. I use many different references that I have accumulated over the past 40 years. Many are articles from magazines that I have saved and others are specialty publications that are no longer in print. These are four excellent references that I believe are all still available and are invaluable sources of knowledge for anodizers:

  • The Surface Treatment and Finishing of Aluminum and Its Alloys, by S. Wernick, R. Pinner and P. G. Sheasby, Fifth Edition (the current edition may be the sixth edition).
  • The Technology of Anodizing Aluminum, by A. W. Brace and P. G. Sheasby, Second Edition (1979)
  • The Technology of Anodizing Aluminum, by Arthur W. Brace, Third Edition 2000
  • Anodic Coating Defects, Their Causes and Cure, by Arthur W. Brace

Another source that I value is Instructions for Applying Alcoa Alumilite Finishes, Aluminum Co. of America. This is a limited circulation, hardback publication that was provided to Alcoa-“approved” anodizers from the 1950s through the 1970s. This book contains the fundamentals of Types I, II and III anodizing, plus other basics such as dying using aluminum organic dyes, chemical brightening and much more. If you can find a copy, it is worth the purchase.

There are other sources as well. contains archived articles, organized by subject matter, from the Anodizing Clinic over the years.

Still another excellent source of information is available by joining the Aluminum Anodizers Council. Members enjoy access to specific technical papers published by the council. Becoming an active member and attending the annual conferences can also add to your knowledge of the subject.


Originally published in the February 2016 issue.

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