View Full Version : Finishing touches - anodize vs cerakote vs rattle can?

11-17-2013, 1:56 PM
Talk to me about finishes. Upsides, downsides, etc.

Looking at the "non-black" ARs thread, I had some thoughts I'd like clarified, but maybe if we get some good info this could become a sticky. I don't know.

1. I know there's type 2 and 3 anodizing as probably the most common method of protecting your receivers - 3 being the harder and more durable method. Can someone break down the specific differences in just how much more beneficial 3 is than 2?

2. Given that you can apparently only do colors/patterns/non-black stuff with type 2 anodizing, is there any downside to getting the more durable type 3, and then painting over it with some type of durable rattle can stuff? I know there's plenty of good looking rifles out there, and plenty of good paints, but how would it affect (if at all) the anodizing underneath?

3. Differences between cerakote and anodizing? Benefits/negatives to each? I've seen cerakote finishes that wear down to bare metal just from brass ejecting - never really took a look at my ARs from active duty or noticed whether anodizing is susceptible to the same easy wear or what.

Any help clarifying?

11-17-2013, 2:01 PM
depends on ur budget..

rattle can good for DIY'r on a limited budget

sky's the limit

11-17-2013, 2:21 PM
If you want to do Cerakote yourself, you can try using the C - series paint.


It has been very durable for me so far. It's only a little less durable than the heat cured version, but I don't mind my rifle looking worn and used :)

11-17-2013, 7:29 PM
I have my ARs anodized first then I paint or cerakote on top of that. Type 3 is your best bet for firearms. And when cerakote is applied correctly it should be more durable than almost any type of coating out there.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kaufmann-Tactical-Firearms/484660358261891 if you have Facebook check out is guys work, the rifle at the top of his page has thousands of rounds through it and it goes in the back of his pickup everyday, and it was cerakoted about six years ago.

jb octane
11-17-2013, 7:58 PM
Don't forget hydro dipping.

I think that's the most common treatment for patterns like Multicam

11-17-2013, 8:24 PM
Think of Hard Anodizing as the last step in completing the build of an AR.

I consider any coating on top of the anodizing is cosmetic.

Anodizing is more structural than a protection from oxidation. The hardness of anodizing protects the receiver from early wear....

Coatings like ceracote or a tough finish like Norrells Molly Resin are great.

They also stick well to parkerizing and Anodizing.

Figure out what your rifle is for- looking pretty or holding up after 10,000 rounds and build it as you want it to function.