Design Review: Butterfly Knife Prototype

For my final project I have decided to make a butterfly knife. To give it a more unique look, I want to anodize the metal to give it a vibrant color. To anodize metal, you need to run an electric current through the metal in a solution. This process creates an oxidized layer with a unique color depending on the voltage that is being run through it.


Another way to produce a similar outcome is to oxidize the metal by heating it up. This approach seemed easier to accomplish since I did not have the equipment needed to electrically anodize the metal I had. I had originally tried to heat color aluminum but had no success. I then tried it on some old stainless steel i had lying around and had some good results.


I’m going to attempt to electric anodize still to see the outcome, but as of now I will make my knife out of steel. It will be easy for me to work with and and with have the strength to last a long time.







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8 Comments. Leave new

  • Branden Goldenberg
    March 20, 2017 12:06 pm

    I never would have thought of adding color to a metal in this manner. I think you would be able to achieve a more colorful product with the anodizing technique you mentioned. I am interested to see where you end up taking this project.

  • The knife you showed us in class that had a little bit of rainbow in it was so cool! I think this will be the most important part of your project. You should keep experimenting with different treatments of heat and electricity to see what gets the coolest colors out of the metal. I’m sure you can find the best way to manipulate the metal.

  • Oksana Schuppan
    March 17, 2017 12:30 pm

    You captured your aesthetics extremely well and I love how you are using chemistry to execute! I love that you tried on multiple devices as well. I’m sure your skills will be honed by the time you complete your final design. They are already looking great. Just keep experimenting.

  • The vibrant blues on the knifes are great to see. It’s going to be mesmerizing when the butterfly knife is in motion. It would be cool to see other colors and build your aesthetic around it. Overall, great job.

  • Very cool. The anodiziation idea I think would produce really cool results. Would the asethetic be industrial with the scorched look of the stainless steel?

  • Connor Swanson
    March 15, 2017 5:04 pm

    Your prototypes turned out great! I had never even heard of creating this color scheme on metal but it turned out really well. I’m excited to see how the knife turns out. Let us know if you decide to go with a real knife or a weighted piece that is strictly for practice.

  • Great prototype! The work you have put in to designing your aesthetic is impressive! I agree that the vibrant colors look great and make the butterfly knife interesting. Good luck!

  • This came out really well! It’s cool that you tried it on a few different pieces of metal to see how the metal type and thickness affects the color. I like how you were able to change the color and create a “spectrum” look.

    Are you still going to consider dipping the metal into a solution to change the color? You could potentially get nice results from doing it that way.


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