Monday, 25 November 2013

finish it redux

I re-treated the workpiece by using fine steel wool to rub in more of the bluing. This evened out the appearance, but it would require several more applications with the somewhat abrasive wool to achieve a really deep colouration.

In a document that I was reading about cold bluing, one user recommended a 10-time repetition of immersing the workpiece in boiling water, application of bluing with steel wool, rinsing & drying. That seemed a little excessive, but probably works.

An assumption I made at the bleaching phase was to use liquid chlorine bleach which had an interesting reaction with the aluminium pan I had the workpiece resting in. A yellowish deposit formed wherever the bleach was in contact with the pan. I did not consider using peroxide bleach until I saw a bottle in the drug store the other day. It bears some further experimentation.

One of the other tests I'd like to undertake is to try to apply a copper-based patina available at art-glass supply shops. That would provide a nice contrast to the dark blue on certain projects. How it will work with steel is a mystery at the moment, as it is designed for use with lead came in stained glass applications.

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