Author Topic: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time  (Read 9523 times)

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Offline Rockne

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Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« on: October 29, 2021, 03:42 PM »


I have this rule (and another 12" ruler) that is fading and becoming more difficult to read.  Anyone else have this problem?  FWIW, these are kept stored away in the very corner of the shop, and in their MDF custom-cut holders. . . .even so, the back sides are both faded as well. 

Most of my anodized things are black and have barrels, so I'm not familiar with the longevity of other colors.  The Drill Press fence is obviously retaining its "redness" better than the rule or the square, and the Square better than the rule (although the rule is older, so I expect the square will continue to fade as well.  I actually keep the square inside in my basement where it isn't exposed to any natural light whatsoever. 

Very disappointing.  I'd estimate about $50 bucks to send it back to Woodpeckers since it's such a long item.  I think I'll probably just find another solution.

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Offline Birdhunter

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2021, 03:55 PM »
I have a bunch of faded WP rules etc. Mine are faded on the side that is exposed to sunlight. No so much on the hidden side.
Birdhunter

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #2 on: October 29, 2021, 04:18 PM »
Yes I've also had the issue. The color red is especially prone to fading. I have many Milwaukee red PAINTED metal tool boxes that have been exposed to shop lighting and the exposed areas are all turning rose/pink.

Email or talk with Woodpeckers, they may be of some help.

Woodpeckers is aware of the issue and are actively looking into a different finish that resists fading.

Offline Birdhunter

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #3 on: October 29, 2021, 08:57 PM »
Oh well, as I age, I tend to fade.
Birdhunter

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #4 on: October 29, 2021, 10:17 PM »
Here's an example of the red PAINT fading from only exposure to shop lights. The front end of the container where the stick-on label is located has been only exposed to shop fluorescent lighting. The other surfaces are somewhat protected by the stacking of adjacent tools and the shelf that is directly above it. The bright Milwaukee painted red surface has unfortunately turned to a rose hued color.

Worse yet, anodized surfaces are 5-10 times more susceptible to fading than painted surfaces. The worst case is when you use the tools outside and that ruler lays in the sun for 10-12 hours for days at a time, just keep them out of direct sunlight.



Offline mattgam

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #5 on: October 30, 2021, 01:01 AM »
This was a problem in older woodpeckers tools.  I recall reading they changed their anodizing formula to make stuff more UV resistant. 

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #6 on: October 30, 2021, 01:47 AM »
     I had this happen to two of the 18" triangles, and a little bit on one 50" rule. I don't think it is just UV light. I don't know. I have noticed that it tends to happen on larger or longer items. So maybe it is due to different anodizing equipment or sources. Almost all of my WP stuff gets the same light and conditions. Only some have faded. Something about the anodizing is different between different items.

Seth

Offline thudchkr

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #7 on: October 30, 2021, 06:38 AM »
     I had this happen to two of the 18" triangles, and a little bit on one 50" rule. I don't think it is just UV light. I don't know. I have noticed that it tends to happen on larger or longer items. So maybe it is due to different anodizing equipment or sources. Almost all of my WP stuff gets the same light and conditions. Only some have faded. Something about the anodizing is different between different items.

Seth

Not so sure about that.

I have several different rules, each a different length yet all purchased at the same time and the only one of the group that faded was the one that was left out inside the shop.  It ended up catching sunlight that came through the windows at various times of the day.

Also FWIW, I was talking to WP’s customer service on another issue, (which they quickly resolved), I brought up the issue of the faded rule. The representative I was talking to informed me they wouldn’t take any action on that issue. Thankfully, in my case, it’s a 24” imperial rule, and I’ve primarily switched to using metric dimensioning.
« Last Edit: October 30, 2021, 06:40 AM by thudchkr »
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Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #8 on: October 30, 2021, 12:02 PM »
     I had this happen to two of the 18" triangles, and a little bit on one 50" rule. I don't think it is just UV light. I don't know. I have noticed that it tends to happen on larger or longer items. So maybe it is due to different anodizing equipment or sources. Almost all of my WP stuff gets the same light and conditions. Only some have faded. Something about the anodizing is different between different items.

Seth

Not so sure about that.

I have several different rules, each a different length yet all purchased at the same time and the only one of the group that faded was the one that was left out inside the shop.  It ended up catching sunlight that came through the windows at various times of the day.

Also FWIW, I was talking to WP’s customer service on another issue, (which they quickly resolved), I brought up the issue of the faded rule. The representative I was talking to informed me they wouldn’t take any action on that issue. Thankfully, in my case, it’s a 24” imperial rule, and I’ve primarily switched to using metric dimensioning.


Just speculating based on my stuff.

   I have about 15 red WP measuring tools. All of them are out in the same light and conditions (hanging on the same wall space). All have been there for at least ten years.  Only three have faded. Which leads me to believe that not all the anodizing is the same.  Probably just coincidence that mine were all larger items.


Seth

Offline jeffinsgf

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #9 on: November 06, 2021, 06:49 PM »
I don't know who you were talking to, but we routinely replace badly faded tools.

There's some voodoo to anodizing, and it isn't as consistent as it should be. Some batches just fade worse than others.

Offline Birdhunter

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #10 on: November 06, 2021, 08:42 PM »
Several of my many WP tools are faded, but all are still totally functional.
Birdhunter

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #11 on: November 06, 2021, 10:15 PM »
The rules are anodized. There are UV resistant dyes with a rating of 8 or even 8+.  Also the quality of the seal affects UV resistance. As a rule black dyes are the most UV resistant.  Woodpeckers could probably spec a dye with greater fade resistance. But note that the fading of the dye does not indicate that the corrosion resistant film has been breached. Woodpeckers dyes are probably rated 5 or 6.  6 is twice as resistant than 5, and 7 is twice as resistant than 6, etc.  So a dye rated 8 would be significantly more fade resistant.

Anodizing has several advantages as a finish.

1.  It is a penetrating finish and can never flake, peel or chip.
2.  It actually makes the surface of the aluminum significantly harder preventing scratches.
3.  The finish generally lasts 10 to 20 years.
4.  Laser engraving will reveal the contrasting raw aluminum.  It is an ideal finish for Woodpeckers process.

Write to them suggesting that they upgrade their dye selection, or if that is not feasible, the they should offer a black finish which will be more durable.

Note:  The color dyes are usually organic and will fade eventually. Some dyes can be produced from minerals and those resist fading.
« Last Edit: November 06, 2021, 10:19 PM by Packard »

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #12 on: November 06, 2021, 10:42 PM »
I don't know who you were talking to, but we routinely replace badly faded tools.

There's some voodoo to anodizing, and it isn't as consistent as it should be. Some batches just fade worse than others.

Well, I'd say there's a whole lot of voodoo to anodizing. It's not as simple as attaching a couple of electrodes to an aluminum substrate, placing it in an anodizing bath and then turning on the juice...it's way more complex than that.

Dye material make-ups, bath temperatures, bath ph levels, times of bath exposure vs alkalinity levels. If this was an easy process then everyone with a train transformer and some dye would be in the anodizing business.

Just keep anodized items out of the direct rays of sun and you'll probably be fine.

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #13 on: November 06, 2021, 11:51 PM »
As a rule black dyes are the most UV resistant. 

True...but that's exactly the rub. Corporate colors are extremely important for corporate identification and when you've built your product identification on a particular corporate color, if you change the color of your product, you're also throwing huge sums of potential sales down the drain because people no longer identify your product with the new corporate color.

Back in the 70's 3M changed their corporate colors from scotch plaid to red, that change alone cost them over 40 million dollars in revenue...and that was over 50 years ago.

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #14 on: November 07, 2021, 10:26 PM »
This topic got my interest so I went out to the shop to look at some of my WP stuff.  No fading that I can see, even on the straightedge that is always exposed to light. The set up blocks and the saw gauge see very little light because they're stored in cases.  The angle reference  was kept "in the light" for years, although now it lives inside a drawer of a toolbox.

Cheese, my old Milwaukee boxes all faded the same way as yours did. [smile]

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #15 on: November 08, 2021, 01:09 AM »
Cheese, my old Milwaukee boxes all faded the same way as yours did. [smile]

Nice to see you back in the mix Rob...baseball season must be over... [big grin]

Ya, it's weird that the Milwaukee painted metal boxes fade especially when they've been exposed to light intensity levels that are not extreme. Outside in full sunlight...extreme. Inside the shop & subjected to only shop fluorescent lighting...not extreme.

Offline Rob Z

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #16 on: November 08, 2021, 11:02 AM »
Good morning Cheese

Yes, the season is over and the post-season blues have set in  [embarassed]. Now, the countdown is on for Spring Training. [big grin]

Random observation about this fading paint thing....I have a steel Bosch box that is at least 15 years old, and while I don't have a way to compare, I'm sure that it hasn't faded much in that time. The Milwaukee red sure seems to fade a lot more.

Offline Crazyraceguy

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #17 on: November 08, 2021, 11:19 AM »
It has always been said that red is the most susceptible to fading as far as paint goes. This is something we always dealt with when I worked in a bodyshop years ago. You could match the color that it is today but the newer color, likely with better UV screening clearcoat too, will fade differently over time.
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Offline HowardH

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2021, 07:25 PM »
I have also noticed my square has faded quite a bit.  That's unfortunate.  I just got their perfect 90 miter gauge and it's really nice. Very high quality and dead nuts accurate. 
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Offline fritter63

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #19 on: January 11, 2022, 10:07 PM »
Here's my sample from the shop:

The only noticeable fade I see (and had noticed) is the bevel gauge. I had chalked it up to oxidation. Interesting that it only one side, but it is stored in a systainer in foam. Maybe more oxygen exposure on the up side?

NOTE that the bevel scale bar which it came with is NOT faded, and hangs inside a dark cabinet, but lots of airflow.

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Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #20 on: January 12, 2022, 12:12 AM »
Rumor has it that Woodpeckers is working on an anodizing dye that has more fade resistance. They've acknowledged they've had issues in the past and they are working to thwart the fading process.

I believe they came up with a special square several years ago that had a fade resistant finish but it was gold/yellow in color which doesn't work well with the corporate signature red finish.

Unfortunately, red is the color that is most prone to fading.  [sad]

Offline AstroKeith

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #21 on: January 12, 2022, 05:54 AM »
Could be worse - every 'UJK' item I have purchased from Axminster Tools has arrived  a different shade of orange.
Retired engineer/scientist

Offline JimH2

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #22 on: January 12, 2022, 09:32 AM »

Back in the 70's 3M changed their corporate colors from scotch plaid to red, that change alone cost them over 40 million dollars in revenue...and that was over 50 years ago.

Is there a source for this? It really sounds unbelievable given they did not change the company name. I am not familiar with their business lines in the 70's, but I doubt people switch tape brands or companies using their commercial products switched suppliers.

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #23 on: January 12, 2022, 09:44 AM »
This topic got my interest so I went out to the shop to look at some of my WP stuff.  No fading that I can see, even on the straightedge that is always exposed to light. The set up blocks and the saw gauge see very little light because they're stored in cases.  The angle reference  was kept "in the light" for years, although now it lives inside a drawer of a toolbox.

Cheese, my old Milwaukee boxes all faded the same way as yours did. [smile]

The rules have to be exposed to UV for them to fade.  If you don't use them outdoors and you don't have fluorescent light fixtures in your shop, and you don't have direct sunlight in the shop, then I would expect the color to remain for a much longer time.

Color photos fade the same way.  Exposure to sunlight and fluorescent bulbs is the main culpret.

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #24 on: January 12, 2022, 10:42 AM »
The white on gold was / is really hard to read. I have one 12" triangle that is gold. I don't use it for measuring or marking just for squaring.

Seth

Offline Mike Goetzke

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #25 on: January 12, 2022, 10:59 AM »
Could be worse - every 'UJK' item I have purchased from Axminster Tools has arrived  a different shade of orange.

This is also easy to notice on my TSO blue tools - even on tool sets where components are different shades.

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #26 on: January 12, 2022, 11:07 AM »
The "white" is probably just the raw aluminum exposed after engraving.  You can probably back-fill the engraved markings with a special crayon.

https://www.amazon.com/Markal-Lacquer-Stik-Highlighter-Fill-Crayon/dp/B008980KQY

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #27 on: January 12, 2022, 11:09 AM »
The "white" is probably just the raw aluminum exposed after engraving.  You can probably back-fill the engraved markings with a special crayon.

https://www.amazon.com/Markal-Lacquer-Stik-Highlighter-Fill-Crayon/dp/B008980KQY

Anodizing solutions need to be replaced or replenished as they are being used.  Some anodizers wait too long to add more product to the solution and the colors can be inconsistent. 

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #28 on: January 12, 2022, 03:46 PM »
Is there a source for this? It really sounds unbelievable given they did not change the company name. I am not familiar with their business lines in the 70's, but I doubt people switch tape brands or companies using their commercial products switched suppliers.

I don't know Jim, the only reason I know this is because I lived through the changeover and it was a very, very hot topic among the employees at the time. A lot of employees just shook their heads and dropped their jaws.  [smile]

Without going too far off topic signage was a huge expense with over 200 manufacturing plants, 150-200 office buildings, 100,000 employees and 50,000 products, advertising brochures, stationery & envelopes, water towers that needed to be changed, employee badges, the list was endless and I might add, at the time a decent yearly raise was 1% or 2%...hot topic indeed.

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #29 on: January 12, 2022, 04:37 PM »
Anodizing was originally produced to prevent the formation of aluminum oxide ("white rust", a white powdery substance).  It was offered in clear only. 

It is not a coating.  It penetrates the surface of the aluminum.

The longer the aluminum was left in the solution the deeper into the surface is the protection (and the color).

It also hardens the surface substantially.  Some race car engine blocks are made of aluminum with no cast-iron liners.  The block is hardened by "hard anodizing" to achieve acceptable wear resistance.  Typically these engine blocks are replaced after the 250 or 500-mile race.

Chevrolet tried to use this technology for the Chevrolet Chevette starting in 1976, but the anodizing was not up to the task of consumer driving and they abandoned that tech.

 

Offline JimH2

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #30 on: January 12, 2022, 05:02 PM »
Is there a source for this? It really sounds unbelievable given they did not change the company name. I am not familiar with their business lines in the 70's, but I doubt people switch tape brands or companies using their commercial products switched suppliers.

I don't know Jim, the only reason I know this is because I lived through the changeover and it was a very, very hot topic among the employees at the time. A lot of employees just shook their heads and dropped their jaws.  [smile]

Without going too far off topic signage was a huge expense with over 200 manufacturing plants, 150-200 office buildings, 100,000 employees and 50,000 products, advertising brochures, stationery & envelopes, water towers that needed to be changed, employee badges, the list was endless and I might add, at the time a decent yearly raise was 1% or 2%...hot topic indeed.

That makes sense. I misread your original post thinking it was lost sales only. When you add up all that related costs it makes complete sense. I have never understood rebranding other than the people who sell the stuff you need to rebrand make easy money. Most of the mergers and consolidations of large companies rarely benefit anyone and typically do not result in any savings for the consumer. It does kill off competition and helps guarantee price controls and a whole bunch of employees of the merged companies losing their jobs.

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Offline fritter63

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #31 on: January 14, 2022, 08:14 PM »

Chevrolet tried to use this technology for the Chevrolet Chevette starting in 1976, but the anodizing was not up to the task of consumer driving and they abandoned that tech.

And Vega. I owned one. :( My first car actually, 4 years old and I got it for $300. Burned more oil than gas thanks to those aluminum cylinder walls.

Offline rst

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #32 on: January 14, 2022, 09:41 PM »
So the Vegas were burning oil...I always thought they were spraying for bugs

Offline demographic

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #33 on: March 09, 2022, 06:30 PM »
Anodizing was originally produced to prevent the formation of aluminum oxide ("white rust", a white powdery substance).  It was offered in clear only. 

It is not a coating.  It penetrates the surface of the aluminum.

The longer the aluminum was left in the solution the deeper into the surface is the protection (and the color).

It also hardens the surface substantially.  Some race car engine blocks are made of aluminum with no cast-iron liners.  The block is hardened by "hard anodizing" to achieve acceptable wear resistance.  Typically these engine blocks are replaced after the 250 or 500-mile race.

Chevrolet tried to use this technology for the Chevrolet Chevette starting in 1976, but the anodizing was not up to the task of consumer driving and they abandoned that tech.

I've not heard of cylinders being anodised, do you have a link with a bit more information about it?
I have a motorbike with a NicaSil coated cylinder (Nickle, Silicon Carbide) and theres various versions of Nickle Silicon ceramic used to coat cylinders but I reckon its kind of overkill for a long straightedge or ruler.

Offline jobsworth

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #34 on: March 16, 2022, 02:27 PM »
funny,

My red Paolini rules have faded but none of my other red WP stuff has

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #35 on: March 16, 2022, 04:13 PM »
Anodizing was originally produced to prevent the formation of aluminum oxide ("white rust", a white powdery substance).  It was offered in clear only. 

It is not a coating.  It penetrates the surface of the aluminum.

The longer the aluminum was left in the solution the deeper into the surface is the protection (and the color).

It also hardens the surface substantially.  Some race car engine blocks are made of aluminum with no cast-iron liners.  The block is hardened by "hard anodizing" to achieve acceptable wear resistance.  Typically these engine blocks are replaced after the 250 or 500-mile race.

Chevrolet tried to use this technology for the Chevrolet Chevette starting in 1976, but the anodizing was not up to the task of consumer driving and they abandoned that tech.

I've not heard of cylinders being anodised, do you have a link with a bit more information about it?
I have a motorbike with a NicaSil coated cylinder (Nickle, Silicon Carbide) and theres various versions of Nickle Silicon ceramic used to coat cylinders but I reckon its kind of overkill for a long straightedge or ruler.

I believe you are correct.  The pistons were anodized to harden them. 

https://www.enginebuildermag.com/2016/04/honing-aluminum-blocks/

The surface of hard anodized aluminum is as hard as chrome (which is a very hard metal).

https://www.matweb.com/reference/anodize.aspx

According to this article it achieves a Rockwell hardness rating of 65 to 70 on the C scale.   Mild steel on the other hand does not eve use the C scale as it is too soft for that.  It is on the B scale.  So hard anodized aluminum is harder than mild steel.   

Offline demographic

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #36 on: March 17, 2022, 07:05 PM »
Yeah, it makes sense to me that the pistons would be anodised.

Online Cheese

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #37 on: March 17, 2022, 09:48 PM »
Yeah, it makes sense to me that the pistons would be anodised.

JE pistons is a big promoter of hard coat anodizing pistons for HP use. Have never yet seen aluminum block cylinder walls anodized for hard coat wear protection. The typical alternative is to  offer cast iron liners or Nik-a-sil liners. In the case of a cataclysmic engine failure, it’s far easier to bore the cylinders and remove the liners and reinstall new ones. Besides, cast iron or Nik-a-sil liners offer a superior surface for bedding rings.

Offline Packard

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Re: Woodpeckers Rules Fading Over Time
« Reply #38 on: March 18, 2022, 09:20 AM »
Racecar engines (and apparently Chevy Vegas) sometimes use unlined aluminum blocks.  For the race cars, they only use the engine block for about 250 miles.  For the Chevy Vega, it was a maintenance nightmare.  Apparently having no liner improves cooling and allows for tighter tolerances. 

What I thought I knew about these engines (I thought the cylinders were anodized) was incorrect.  So I won't spout any more "information".