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Aging wash tubs to make light fixtures

August 31, 2010

I would like to buy 3 new wash tub and distress them to look like this...


Any thoughts on how to achieve this look?

Thanks in advance!


Sidney Roche
hobbyist - Mt. View, California

September 13, 2010

Well this might sound silly but lightly sandblast the galvanizing off of them, throw rocks at them and leave them in the back yard in the sun and rain for six months and that will pretty much do it!

rod henrickson
Rod Henrickson
gunsmith - Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

October 7, 2010

Thank you for your input! What do you think muriatic acid would do to the finish?

Sidney Roche
- Mt. View

October 7, 2010

Hi, Sidney. Muriatic acid is dangerous stuff, but it will remove the galvanizing almost instantly and leave the underlying steel very prone to rapid rusting if that is what you are seeking.


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

October 10, 2010

Try next solution:200 gms iron(III) chloride/ 1 lit water.You can make your own iron chloride, simply dissolve some old nails or some rusty iron scrap in muriatic acid. Or you can oil (very very sparingly) your object with linseed oil (or any other edible oil or fat) and then heat your object to 200-400 °C temperature(slowly). Hope it helps and good luck!

Goran Budija
- Cerovski vrh Croatia

October 13, 2010

Iron dissolves in hydrochloric acid (muriatic) to form ferrous (II) chloride. Ferric (III) chloride is usually made by the action of chlorine gas on hot iron. Not a hobby procedure!

Goran's method would probably work but it is the residual acid doing the etching

geoff smith
Geoff Smith
Hampshire, England

October 15, 2010

If you are really interested for colouring zinc(or tin) plated iron at next webpage you can download(free-=$) small handbook on colouring an cyanide free plating of metals: http://attachments.wetpaintserv.us/TfuRNJ_GLYiy-a_0jvIMxA483937

Goran Budija
- Cerovski vrh Croatia

Ed. note Jan 2017: Although wetpaintserv.us was a legitimate site when Goran posted it, it now appears to be a malware site. Don't go there!
Goran has been kind enough to upload his booklet to https://www.finishing.com/library/budija/budija.pdf.

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