phillc54 wrote: Really nice work Bryan.
I agree, that is taking it to a whole new level!
Can you tell us a bit more about the dyes.
Thanks guys, I appreciate the kind words.
SteelFX is a chemical patina that is sprayed onto freshly polished steel. It will not work if there is mill scale and works better the brighter the surface is polished to. I always start with cold rolled steel as it doesn't take much to get it to a state that's ready for the patina. Mill scale is a pain. The patina is sprayed on and it immediately begins to react with the steel, actually creating a thin layer of copper (for the CopperFX product). There's copper sulfate in the solution I believe.
The copper is the base for some other colors such as the torch fx (red/blue). The patinas can be layered to achieve different unique results. Once the color is achieved, just a rinse with water will "lock it in". Then it is immediately dried with compressed air as it will flash rust within minutes, especially in a humid environment. I then immediately seal it with an indoor/outdoor clear lacquer, although some powder coat. I have heard mixed results about this specific product yellowing after a clear powder is applied, I think it's extra sensitive to the PC cure temps. The cost per sq. in. I've found is actually a bit cheaper or at least similar to powder coating, and the finish is much more unique and interesting, in my opinion.
Also, I've you seen in the photos you can see through the finish so it's nice to add swirls.
Uthayne wrote: I always start with cold rolled steel as it doesn't take much to get it to a state that's ready for the patina. Mill scale is a pain.
How do you get the cold rolled steel to a state to be ready for the patina? Polishing? With say a buffer pad used on a car?
First I remove the dross from the back side with a 4.5" compatible wire wheel on a grinder, but I do not touch the top side. It is too aggressive and can be hard to get the scratches out later. Then I use a degreaser or mineral spirits to clean the oil off of the part, as well as any metal dust/debris from cutting. Once the part is at the stage, I'll switch to a 2" die grinder with a scotchbrite roloc pad. I prefer the red one (medium grit) as a general starting point, but will switch to the green one if I want the finish to be brighter. You could use 600+ grit and get it super polished and I'm sure it would look even better. Not something I have tried, but it would be nice looking I'm sure.
Keeping the angle of attack consistent and grinding in the same direction, I'll polish up the entire surface. Once this has been completed, I'll go back and add swirls if wanted. The cleaner and more brightly polished the surface, the better with these patinas.
With hot rolled, I do the same thing but remove the mill scale with muriatic acid (HCl) or sand blast it first, but it is a bit more work and the CR sheets are only a few dollars more for me.
thefabricator03 wrote: Powder coated?
I wish I had an oven big enough for that... I rattle canned it
Yeah I have had success with rattle canning things Ive cut as well. They come up surprisingly better then expected.
Gloss on the left, Matt on the right. Ended up Matting both of them as the gloss showed up all the grinder touch ups.