Titanium, Water, Bicarbonate of Soda and 19v = Purple!

Thought I would try out anodizing some of my titanium EDC kit.

It is a very simple process.

I used a USB DC-DC variable boost converter step-up voltage regulator, bicarbonate of soda in some water, some 24AWG silicone wire, cottonbuds and a cheap 5v powerbank.

I found 19v works well for a nice purple/ slight golden hue colour.

It is best to get set up then test on a scrap piece of titanium or start at the lowest voltage and increase gradually through the range to the desired colour, you can go forward but can't go back in colour as it were.

Connect a DMM to the leads and adjust the variable pot to the desired voltage or test afterwards to remember the colour effect for the given voltage.

Connect the positive lead to the titanium piece, wrap the negative wire around the water & bicarbonate of soda solution wetted cottonbud head and paint away. Careful of shorting the leads though ;)

There are other methods using different chemicals, or more dangerous ways like heat or entropic anodizing but this was a cheap quick safe way to try it.

The ano will scratch up eventually with most of this stuff sharing a pocket rubbing up with each other but we'll see how it goes.

Relative thickness & durability of the anodizing colours:


Click on for more images.

CRX Utility Keyring - CRX CuTi Atom, Ti Hobi+ 365nm UV & Petrol Lighter, Ti Pen & Toothpick, CuTi 1.6W 450nm Laser.

CRX CuTi 18350 1A Pocket Charger.

CRX Utility Titanium Magnetic Extendable Keyring Pen.

DQG Hobi Ti+365nm UV & Petrol Lighter - 10280 - Twisty Sw - Rechargeable.

CRX Utility Titanium Magnetic Extendable Keyring Toothpick.

War Armor Titanium Titanium Lighter.The grade 5 Ti-6Al-4V was harder to colour, probably due to the higher Al, V alloy composition.

CRX CuTi Blue Laser Osram PLTB450B 450nm 1600mW - OFBD 1.6A - 10280 - Momentary Tail Sw - 1600mW.

CRX CuTi Atom Triple Nichia 219C 5000K - Lexel TA Driver - 18350 - E-Tail Sw - 2200lm.


CRX Utility Pocket Kit.

Very nice CRX I was wondering about doing something like that but have been holding off for a couple of reasons. 1- other stuff is taking priority. 2- I heard that this type of colouring is not particularly hard wearing.

I’m curious to know about the latter. Let us know what you think of the durability.

I’ve messed around with this a few times to anodize the ti scales on some Chinese clone knives. Pretty cool and easy to do. I was even more low-tech and just hooked up various numbers of 9v batteries in series to change the voltage and step through colors.


For sure not hard wearing stuff, but it will last a while and it only takes seconds to do.

Thanks, CRX - I’m very unlikely to be anodising titanium any time soon, but this is still a cool post :beer:

Very nice! I did this with Borax and two 9v batteries on the scales of a small Inkosi, but I had to actually submerge them in the solution. I never thought to apply the solution to the Ti and hook the Ti itself up to the current. Looks awesome!

On a side note, did you build that laser? That’s wicked.

Cool project and great pictures!

Um… “toothpick”… right. Maybe I don’t want to know some of your other “hobbies”! :smiling_imp:

I was also curious as to the durability and if that can be increased by longer exposure time. I do have some Titanium for a build later and may use this like paint by masking and using different voltages for color changes, and repeating until painting is complete. Nice innovation, I am sure that Scotty from Star Trek is among us here at BLF incognito. :wink:

Will do :+1:

Cool, I saw the 9v battery method then remembered I had the USB converter plus I only had two 9v batteries on hand.


Yes I made it from some of the DQG modular stuff & copper, more info here.

I think he’s on to us… :innocent:


Yeah you could do some cool designs like that.