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Coating for copper welded art items

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  • Coating for copper welded art items

    I recently completed a copper rose trellis made from 1 inch copper tubing, all tig welded together. The customer wanted to let it age and turn green, but since it was my first one, I polished it up and took some photo's in the bright sunshine. I prefer the shiny golden copper color myself, and was wondering if anyone can recommend a clear coating that would preserve the shiny polished apperance of copper that would be outside in the elements. I bought a copper mail box and spent 3 hours sanding and polishing it with Mothers Mag and Aluminum Polish, then attempted to clear coat it with Rustoleum clear enamel. After spraying the clear coat enamel on the nice shiny copper, it turned back to a dull, pinkish color. Now I have to try and chemically strip it and polish it again...obviously a test piece of copper would have been the smarter way to go....anyone have any experience with a clear coat for copper that will be outside?

  • #2
    im not quite sure......... but i would like to check out your up in danbury........but i hit some of the bars in your area...

    email me



    • #3

      I coated a copper bird house in a clear Krylon laquer and it turned out quite nice. It seems like 2-3 light coats lasts about a year in out in the weather.


      • #4
        These people will answer your questions...Metal Finishes ...Might as well do it right, and once...


        • #5
          This might be of no help and off topic but at the National Auto Museum in Reno Nev there is a polished copper bodied Rolls Royce that was owned by some sultan in India or something. The cars are maintained by volunters that "adopt" them. An e-mail to that org might be answered.


          • #6
            Can some one tell me the in's and out's or just the basics of TIG welding copper. What would be my limits in thickness with the 180sd? what company makes filler rod? Easy or hard?
            Any would be great.
            Thanks to all


            • #7
              Canuck, it is not a big mystery to tig weld copper. The only thing is that copper, being such a good heat sink, takes more amperage, for equal thickness material, than Carbon steel, Stainless or Aluminum. So with Argon gas, you are limited to about 1/8" material. Lanthanated tungsten and DC straight polarity. Some of the guys here may be able to tell you how to change your set-up to weld a little thicker.

              Filler metal is readily available. Harris Welco is where we get ours. Natweld, Inweld and others have it I am sure. Just ask for De-Oxidized Copper. If you buy it in 10# boxes, 3/32 shouldn't cost you much over $5.00 a pound.

              I have customers that tig copper caskets, copper rain gutters and roofing fixtures, and even one who is building a copper boat.


              • #8
                How much heat can your'e masterpiece withstand?? Not sure if it would discolor in the heating process (oven). If it can take 400 degrees F, you could clear powdercoat it....Very durable....I don't know just a thought.....


                • #9
                  Thanks klsm it's just one more thing to put on my OOOH I GOTTA TRY THAT! list Would be nice to maybe do some art work from copper.


                  • #10

                    I'd try a polyurethane marine spar coat, like "Helmsman", or Flecto spar "Varathane". Try it on a spare piece and let it sit out awhile.
                    I use it on wood, but it's rated for metal also. Pretty bulletproof stuff.

                    Be well.

                    ...from the Gadget Garage
                    Millermatic 210 w/3035, BWE
                    Handler 210 w/DP3035
                    Victor O/A "J" series, SuperRange