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Author Topic: help with brass color.  (Read 1540 times)
steampirate
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« on: August 17, 2010, 11:00:03 pm »

I am in the middle of making a steampunk gun and I have a good number of brass components on it. Unfortunately most of them have uneven color and spots on them. So I sanded off the outer coating to reveal the bare metal. My question is this: how do I make the brass look shiny and polished again?

Thanks in advance Steampirate

EDIT: I have done some of my own research. Apparently there is a varnish on the brass. I used 220 grit sandpaper to sand it. So, would it then be possible to varnish it without polishing it and still have it look good?
« Last Edit: August 18, 2010, 02:20:06 am by steampirate » Logged

Narsil
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« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2010, 11:30:15 pm »


The short answer is to polish them.

If they are badly scratched then you might need to use wet and dry paper, work down through teh grits until you get to about 1200 grit then move onto a metal polish.
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« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2010, 05:46:48 pm »

Quote
If they are badly scratched then you might need to use wet and dry paper, work down through teh grits until you get to about 1200 grit then move onto a metal polish.

Unless you really want to keep the sanded finish, you'll need to sand them with increasingly fine sandpaper- you'll probably need to go up to 600 at least, but the finer the grit, the smoother it'll turn out. And if you want a shiny finish, you'll have to polish them.
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Narsil
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« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2010, 06:27:54 pm »


On metals any lacquer or varnish will be basically invisible so its not a substitute for polishing, if the surface isn;t right before you varnish it it won;t be any better afterwards, if anything coatings tend to hi-light surface imperfections. 

Personally I'm not a big fan of lacquering metals, it keeps them looking shiny for a while but once it starts to flake off it looks horrible and even when its new it looks quite plasticy compared to a naturally patinated and lightly polished surface.

In the long run a wax or oil finish looks better and is easi4er to maintain.
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twilightbanana
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« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2010, 08:12:35 pm »

For future reference, to remove the tarnish from brass and other copper-based alloys you can use a commercially available brass cleaner like Brasso. Or vinegar, lemon juice, ketchup, or other mildly acidic substances.
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Danbury Shakes
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« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2010, 09:34:48 pm »

For future reference, to remove the tarnish from brass and other copper-based alloys you can use a commercially available brass cleaner like Brasso. Or vinegar, lemon juice, ketchup, or other mildly acidic substances.

Brown sauce is also great for cleaning brass (HP, Daddies, etc)


Mare's Tail is also a traditional way of cleaning brass and copper - a lot of hard work with it though
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