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Pure Tin Specimen Preparation

Metallographic etchant database

Tin can be difficult to prepare because it is very soft and distortion to the microstucture can easily occur. If not removed this distorted layer hides the true microstructure. In addition, if any excessive heat occurs during preparation the microstructure can also be masked by surface recrystallized. Proper preparation requires minimizing damage. For tin and tin alloys, alternating between polishing and etching is often required in order to remove the damaged microstructure. The recommended etchant is 2% nital (2 ml nitric acid in 100 ml methanol or ethanol); etch for only a few seconds before repolishing.

SECTIONING

MAXCUT Abrasive blade (Cat. No. MAX-E series)

MOUNTING
Compression Mounting with Phenolic, Epoxy or Diallyl Phthalate compression mounting resins

POLISHING

Abrasive/surface

Lubricant

Force/ sample

Time

320 grit SiC paper
400 grit SiC paper
600 grit SiC paper
800 grit SiC paper
1200 grit SiC paper

Water
Water
Water
Water
Water

5 lbs
5 lbs
5 lbs
5 lbs
5 lbs

Until plane
1 minute
1 minute
1 minute
1 minute

1 um DIAMAT diamond on DACRON pad

DIALUBE Purple Extender

5 lbs

2 minutes

0.05 um Nanometer alumina on NAPPAD pad

Nital etch and repolish

5 lbs

30 seconds


Metallographic micrograph of pure tin

Pure tin, 100X, 2% nital etchant for 2 seconds

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PACE Technologies ® - 3601 E. 34th St. - Tucson, AZ 85713 USA
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