Has Anyone Stripped Down The Framework To The Aluminum Case And Stone Washed Or Anodized It Yet?

Another side hobby of mine is the custom knife world. Plenty of stone-wash, bead-blasted and anodized finishes in Titanium and Aluminum. I would like to see a darker finish offered for the DIY and Pre-Built models. Apple does this by offering it’s “space grey” color. It goes a long way to hide dings, scratches and daily nicks.


I don’t think the framework team is going to be doing custom finishes to the laptop since the priority might be on making the laptop available worldwide and add more components available (expansion cards and such). But if you want custom skins, dbrand already provides lots of choices and they claim to be also scrach-proof.

I will leave this quote here, as it is related:


@Moffintops, Haven’t seen that before. That’s a great argument for not anodizing. Also, anodizing serves no real practical use, unlike a skin or case (to protect against scratches, drops, etc.).

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maybe not right now. Consider it’s a small startup with only a single model under production.

But, I believe you can totally end up with three piece of aluminum with nothing on them so you can electrocoat or anodize them (or at least, spray paint). I’m not sure how the logo is attached but probably will come out after some persuading with a plastic spudger.

At least, you can sleep on the fact that you can change them with just Philips screws (Ahem).

Hmm. Apple Dictionary refuse to beliebe “spudger” is a word. Interesting…

However, I do think that while the aluminum need to hold true for the bottom chassis and top cover, the palmrest can be made of other finishes/color for more customization. Carbon fiber, anyone?

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In this same vein, I wonder if it would be possible to make a completely new piece on the consumer end. Have models been released, or would that fall under copyright? In any case, it would likely end up costing more than just buying a replacement, as raw aluminum at the sizes needed is not exactly cheap. Still, it might be interesting to try.

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I think the plan is to release footprint model (rather than the actual thing) of the motherboard. Whether it will include other parts (e.g. hinge, display), Framework did not mention.

I don’t think making a 3D model of a opaque box (basically) with some holes and dimensions public will … it’s their decision.

Well, if we have the footprint of every single piece, there allow some interesting designs.
e.g. instead of a closure with place for 4 expansion, we can shrink it down to 11 inch and fit a smaller display. Or like Framework imagined people to do, 3D print a plastic box and put the motherboard (and cooling) inside to be used as a desktop.
Fans can also make the panels out of different material and finish (thick sheet of carbon fiber? plastic?) and different shapes.
Right now, looks like Framework is not publishing them, but, I do not think it will harm if you do the measurements yourself, especially of the motherboard.

Yeah that’s about what I figured. There’s another post of someone who wants to make a case out of wood that I think could be interesting to see. It would be nice to have cad designs of the parts, but I’m sure people will find a way to do things anyways.

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I have a 2020 M1 MBA along with my new FW laptop. There are a plethora of options for Macs but very slim to none for the FW. I have real stone skins on the MBA so I don’t have to be too gentle with it. The stone has a dark slate like appearance and the natural roughness of real stone. No luck finding anything like that for the FW which is a shame, it’s my perfect unicorn upgradeable forever machine. The vinyl stickers are not an option for me, not putting that on my real aluminum FW. As a stopgap, I had a real leather portfolio case made to fit from Etsy for about $50+ It looks nice, but I have to be careful about the ventilation on the bottom. The M1 Mac has no such issue…

Removing the magnets is tough. I have managed to get the bottom part powder coated but have not rebuilt yet. I will attempt rebuild after I get some pads

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Do you have some pictures to show us? I for one would be interested to see what is possible…

I just finished the rebuild. This is only the beginning but here you go


That looks really good! Are you planning on coating the expansion ports and dGPU module?

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@taeyeon Depending on the type of anodising it provides a very good protection. Hard anodising is generally as hard as glass so makes an aluminium item a lot more scratch resistant. However it doesn’t lend itself to colour dying very well as it tends to darken the metal oxide layer meaning most places only offer black hard anodising.

@rom4ster that looks great, I look forward to seeing the completed item. I started a thread to see if anyone was going to polish their FW16 but there was no takers :laughing:

Yes i may be able to order parts from scratch for expansion cards. DGPU we will see what we can do. I have yet to even look at it. Currently im focused on the top cover and making a video about this first part. That will be the Project Black.Work official debut.

That is a terrible argument for not annodizing. If you want something in life dont let others tell you no. Just get what you want. I respect framework’s reasoning but I will not be treating their views as gospel, I encourage us all to do the same. We have to band together and do whatever it takes.

@Jimsiss I wanted to annodize but its most likely to kill the magnets, while powdercoating can leave some alive according to my minimal research. Honestly though I am new to all of this so if there is information im missing please tell me as annodizing is by far the best way.

I’ve done some anodising on aluminium and Titanium but never anything with magnets fitted. I suppose the voltages and current involved could kill the magnetism in the magnets.

I’m not so familiar with powder coating, I believe the heat used to bake the coating on is relatively low so might not kill the magnets (heat kills magnetism).

I assume the magnets are glued in? In which case you’d need to try something to either heat up or dissolve the glue.

I thought that could have meant ‘tough’ but managed it. let’s face it the whole project is ‘tough’ for the common person and even the not quite to common frame workers

I mean who in their left or right mind would buy a DIY computer let alone try and anodise the cover.

Clearly a ‘bright’ breed of beings’.

I did acomplish removal of 2 … its not easy. I am not good at this so the community could perhaps help with methodology. I tried my heat gun but it did not work. I tried dipping in 99% alcohol and I was able to rip the front 2 magnets out. They were broken but that is no concern as the glue will hold them back together.

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woah that look sick
too dark for me, but Mmmmm.

Yeah the magnets are epoxied. You can try alcohol, but they probably wont do much either.