Pure Matte Black the Hard Way

The best way to get a pure, non-reflective black uses optics, not pigments:

Matte black blade edges

Matte black blade edges

The shiny steel blades reflect light just fine, but the reflections have no way back out of the gap between adjacent edges: the angle of reflection always points away from you and the incoming light.

I always admire the blackness when I open that box.

Yes, I’m a member of the Society of the Easily Amused.

  1. #1 by Mike on 2017-10-09 - 14:38

    ” the angle of reflection always points away from you and the incoming light.”
    Stealth technology involving radar reflections work the same way.
    The SR71 / A12 / YF12 and B2 all were shaped to have no perpendicular surfaces facing the radar source. The B52, on the other hand is very reflective.

    • #2 by Ed on 2017-10-09 - 19:32

      You’ll never see a picture of the B2’s engine outlets, for the same reason you never see real submarine screws: they’re the crown jewels.

  2. #3 by RCPete on 2017-10-09 - 18:59

    I’ve been amusing myself watching a bubble in my left eye; had surgery on it, with the bubble to help hold the retina in place. At the beginning, one could see the bubble without light (direct stimulation of the cells, I suppose), but I’ve been watching it shrinking over the past few days. I think it will be gone tomorrow sometime.

    Can’t judge on the success of the procedure; had some bleeding when the surgeon removed tools. (Warfarin for the oops). Acuity was horrible when the dressing came off; I can see some shapes now, so I’m hopeful.

    • #4 by Ed on 2017-10-09 - 19:33


      On the upside, now you have a built-in spirit level! [Double erk]

      • #5 by RCPete on 2017-10-09 - 23:01

        It’s getting better; the bubble got to the area/volume tipping point and dissolved this evening. Acuity is getting better; the blurs on the keyboard are starting to resemble letters. At first, they had a big “H” on the electronic eye chart. Nope, nada.

        I had to do this while (sort of) awake, so I got to see the tools as shadows on the retina. They use some really small forceps that look like lineman’s pliers–for absurdly small lines. In several years, I might need to do the other eye. I’m in no hurry.


        • #6 by Ed on 2017-10-10 - 07:15

          All I can mumble: best wishes!