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Water Based Metal Coatings


I'm looking for a formula for water-based metal coatings like those manufactured by Sculpt-Nouveau or Modern Options / Sophisticated Finishes [affil link] . I would like to patinate some wood furniture to make it look like old metal, but I don't have the time or resources to do something like plating or leafing. These commercial products are fairly expensive and come in a small quantity. I'm also restricted to their choices of metals. All the information I have found makes me think that this stuff could be made relatively cheaply using inexpensive off-the-shelf products, I'm just not sure what the vehicle and binder should be for the metallic powder. Almost everything I can think of would seal the surface and make patination difficult. Thanks in advance.

James Hughes
- Seattle, Washington, United States


I recently saw a flyer for Rustoleum American Accents [affil link] paints to simulate patinas, leather, stone, etc. These or similar paint products would answer your problem of how to apply the patina to other metals; the reason they don't put real patinas of varying colors on other metals is that you can't do it (the patina is a reaction between a given metal and some reagent).

As for printing the formulations of proprietary products, we can't do that, James. The anonymity of the Internet makes it impractical to determine if a responder has the knowledge legitimately or is a disgruntled employee or competitor who is revealing trade secrets. But if anyone wants to give a reference to published literature, that would be fine, of course. Speaking of which, there are a number of books about patination which will give you the formulas. Good luck.

Ted Mooney, finishing.com
Ted Mooney, P.E.
Striving to live Aloha
finishing.com - Pine Beach, New Jersey

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