Is it all right to strip and then anodize (at a shop, I suppose?) aluminum cranks?

I'm trying to build a bike and I saw second-hand cranks on eBay. They look like they're fine except for the scratches/abrasions they have. They're fairly cheap too compared to new old stocks so I'm wondering if it would be a good buy if I can restore them to look brand new again.

So would stripping, sanding, anodizing, etc. the cranks have any negative effect on them?

  • 7
    It would probably end up costing you more than just buying new cranks, going by the most expensive alloy cranks at Evans (except those with power meters). One-off jobs tend to be charged quite harshly by anodising shops, who also like to know the provenence of the material, and prep it themselves
    – Chris H
    Oct 31, 2016 at 16:31
  • 2
    You can anodize stuff yourself, but I have no idea how well you can get it to work. And I don't THINK that anodizing, done with reasonable care, will seriously affect the integrity of the item. But I'd personally just polish away the worst of the scratches and leave the rest as "character". Oct 31, 2016 at 18:29
  • @ChrisH is fairly right, it would be more expensive to do the process than buying a new crankset.
    – gstorto
    Oct 31, 2016 at 23:41
  • @DanielRHicks apart from the resulting fumes and chemical waste, anodising is fairly tricky to get right, but it wouldn't damage the bulk while making the surface more robust. Another option may be to polish right back to a nice shiny finish and protect that with a clear lacquer or even wax. This would need regular attention as the surface would be quite soft
    – Chris H
    Nov 1, 2016 at 7:33

1 Answer 1


Well, from the comments, I guess it is all right to strip the cranks and re-anodize them. There wouldn't be any serious effects on the material itself. The only downside is the process and the cost, which would probably cost close to, if not more, buying a new set of cranks.

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