Pickling Paste 140 A powerful, low-fuming, safer-to-use pickling paste! Many of the processes used for pickling stainless steel lead to the development of hazardous nitric fumes. To improve safety when pickling, Avesta Finishing Chemicals has developed a unique patented low-fuming pickling paste which reduces toxic nitric fumes by 50 %. How Stainless Steel Pickling Works. Pickling is a pre-passivation process of treating stainless steel parts with an acid solution, typically hydrochloric or sulfuric acid, which can remove oxide scale and heat tint while dissolving steel flecks embedded in the part.
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Stainless steels get their corrosion resistant qualities because of an extremely thin (invisible) layer that covers the surface. This is the chrome-oxide layer (or passive layer) and it forms spontaneously when the chromium within stainless steel is exposed to the oxygen in normal atmospheric conditions.