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topic 3218

Seeking Terne plate or Terne 2


Q. Does anyone know where I can get some 30 gauge Terne 2 plate? I cannot find it anywhere. I want to use it to construct some small 'artistic' boxes (New Mexican tinsmiths use it out here but none of them will tell me where they got it from). So if you know where I can get a hold of some or if you know of another type of coated metal that I could use (needs to be able to be soldered with an iron), please let me know. I would appreciate any information.

Portia Sharp
- Albuquerque, New Mexico


A. Isn't that just like them?

But I would stay away from terne, since it contains lead, and keep trying to find tin plate.

Lead is bad when you make your creation, and bad for the person who buys your creation, because you don't know the final use of a bowl or what have you.

I'm sure you can find tin plate. Don't give up!

Good Luck, Tom


tom pullizzi monitor
Tom Pullizzi
Falls Township,


A. Terne is less common now than in the past because of the lead content, and is being phased out of all applications except those for which it cannot be substituted. You can also get tin plate with a bright OR a matte finish. Good luck

Keith Bolog
- Chicago


Q. I deal in electrolytic tin plates, would like to know if there is something through which we can get into business.

Thanking you


rachit goverdhan
- Rochester New York,USA


A. I bought a big roll of terne a few years ago, to repair a flat roof. I called businesses (in Kansas City, MO) that advertised in the Yellow Pages, carrying sheet metal materials and roofing materials. Also, the Old House Journal has advertisers who carry it. Good luck.

Michael Dean Baker
- Thailand


A. Follansbee Steel makes Terne II material. Terne II does not contain lead. It is a tin/zinc coating on carbon steel. It is available in roll form.

Robert Bastaja
- Columbus, Ohio


A. According to the "Steel Catalog and Reference Book"(published by J.H. Jackson & Associates,Inc. Melbourne, FLA), and supplied by my local steel distributor, Long Terne steel sheets are still available (16-28 ga.). I have even found it through my roofing supplier.

George Trovato Jr.
restoration - Dallas, Pennsylvania


! I have used the original Terne plate for "early American" tin ware reproductions. I found this very satisfactory. My supplier supplied me with a sample of the Terne 2. With the zinc and tin coating it had the appearance of galvanized metal, lacking the luster that I desire for my products.

Henry Sharp
- Newark Valley, New York

August 8, 2010

A. I sell tin by the sheet out of my workshop. Bright, smooth finish similar to the tin that the Spanish Colonial silversmith's were using to create frames, sconces and nichos for the local Missions. At 28 ga., it's a little heavier than the 30 ga. that you're looking for. It solders beautifully.

Jason Younis
- Albuquerque, New Mexico

July 29, 2015

A. While Terne plate contained lead, Terne II replaced the lead with zinc - it is a tin/zinc alloy instead of tin/lead. Notionally similar to work with, but I haven't used either myself.

Tom Schwerdt
- Austin, Texas, USA

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