Surface treatments are applied to magnesium parts primarily to improve their appearance and corrosion resistance. Mechanical and chemical cleaning methods are used singly or in combination, depending on the specific application and product involved to ensure repetitive reliability. This article focuses on mechanical finishing methods, namely, barrel tumbling, polishing, buffing, vibratory finishing, fiber brushing, and shot blasting. It provides useful information on process control and difficulties with chemical and anodic treatments of magnesium alloys. The use and applications of plating and organic finishing of magnesium alloys are also reviewed. The article concludes with a description of health and safety precautions to be followed during the surface treatment process.
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