bronze-look steel

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Powers
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bronze-look steel

Post by Powers » 2013-02-05

What is the most economical way to make my steel armor look bronze? Bonus points if the solution can hold up to rattan.

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Lord Dubh
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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Lord Dubh » 2013-02-05

Heh...

Doubt anything that is not electroplating could hold up to rattan.
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Artex
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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Artex » 2013-02-05

Actually there is a company that makes stuff called Blacken-it they also make Patina-it and they have a copper patina that a couple of my SCA buds have used and it works well. It won't give you like a pure bronze look, but it will make it look kind of close. It however does not work on stainless steel.

Never mind they discontinued that color. But you may be able to find another company that makes something simular.

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Artex » 2013-02-05

http://www.sciencecompany.com/Do-It-You ... s-W12.aspx you can try this site if you are feeling productive.

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Kobalos » 2013-02-06

Electroplating won't hold up to rattan, either. Your best bet for armor that looks like bronze is to, well, make your armor out of bronze. It's legit:

Unless explicitly permitted in the specific armor type description, metal armor must be constructed of bronze or steel; and it must be at least 18‐gauge and no thinner than .045”.


As Artex mentioned, not much sticks to stainless steel. It's supposed to be stainless! ;)
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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Powers » 2013-02-11

I'm thinking of copper plating the steel (it sounds infinitely easier than bronze plating, though I may or may not need to nickel plate it first), and applying a Florentine brown patina from the site Artex suggested. My account for ArmourArchive.org finally got approved, so I'll bounce the idea off of the folks there and let you know what their consensus seems to be.

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Kobalos » 2013-02-11

Powers wrote:I'm thinking of copper plating the steel (it sounds infinitely easier than bronze plating, though I may or may not need to nickel plate it first), and applying a Florentine brown patina from the site Artex suggested. My account for ArmourArchive.org finally got approved, so I'll bounce the idea off of the folks there and let you know what their consensus seems to be.


Yeah, you'll probably need to nickel-plate it first. Here's a quote on a similar project from Ted Mooney, the brain at Finishing.com:

But, yes, the stainless steel screws can be copper plated. Plating of stainless steel starts with a Wood's Nickel Strike. The thing is, you can't successfully plate onto tarnish or a passive skin, you must plate on fresh, active metal -- but stainless steel passivates almost instantly. The nickel strike simultaneously dissolves the tarnish while it deposits a fresh layer of nickel plating. Good luck.


Do you actually have access to a plating tank big enough for your armor? This could be a lot of cost & effort for an experiment with unknown outcome...
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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Kobalos » 2013-02-11

Oh, and if it does work, hopefully your stainless is magnetic (not all SS is). That way, it'll be easier to convince a doubting armor marshal that it is in fact made of steel ;)
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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Powers » 2013-02-13

Kobalos wrote:Yeah, you'll probably need to nickel-plate it first.

I was thinking that would probably be the case, especially on the pieces that are stainless.

Kobalos wrote:Do you actually have access to a plating tank big enough for your armor? This could be a lot of cost & effort for an experiment with unknown outcome...

I have none of the equipment. If I end up plating it, I'll probably start with a smaller piece of armor, or even a scrap piece of steel, in a smaller tank, then beat the sample until the coating fails or I lose interest.

Kobalos wrote:Oh, and if it does work, hopefully your stainless is magnetic (not all SS is). That way, it'll be easier to convince a doubting armor marshal that it is in fact made of steel

I'll have to check that out. I'm pretty sure my breastplate, bracer, and greave are made of mild steel, but I'm working on a stainless gorget--working stainless steel is taking three steps forward and two steps back, so I might stick with mild as I finish my kit.

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Thrush Svartehjertet » 2013-02-14

Powers, you comin' to March Campout?

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Powers » 2013-02-15

Thrush Svartehjertet wrote:Powers, you comin' to March Campout?

Thrush
berserk

At this point, it's looking like I should be able to make it.

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Powers » 2013-02-15

Asking around on the Dag and SCA boards, I found out that I can achieve a bronze look by baking vegetable oil onto the steel. However, I will have to reapply the finish at least once a year since it will be getting smashed with rattan.

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by mardux zulammar » 2013-02-15

At least vegetable oil is good for one thing. Lol
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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Powers » 2013-02-15

mardux zulammar wrote:At least vegetable oil is good for one thing. Lol

It actually worked fairly well: I baked the coating onto some spoons.

Does anyone have any ideas for making the finish more durable?

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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Thrush Svartehjertet » 2013-02-19

Powers wrote:
Thrush Svartehjertet wrote:Powers, you comin' to March Campout?

Thrush
berserk

At this point, it's looking like I should be able to make it.


* yes. Party time!


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Re: bronze-look steel

Post by Kobalos » 2013-02-19

Powers wrote:
mardux zulammar wrote:Does anyone have any ideas for making the finish more durable?


How about clearcoating it with the same stuff you used on your shield? I would think the flexible clearcoat used on PD would work better than a brittle lacquer.
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