Do-It-Yourself Brass Nameplates
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If you want the background of the finished plate to be dark, instant gun bluing solution or paint works well. Gun bluing can produce a very nice patina, depending on how it is used. Finally, polish the raised portions of the plate with brass polish or 1,500-grit sandpaper, stamp in your serial number and other desired data and clear coat. That's it. It might take a bit of time to get your artwork the way you want it, but once you have a pattern to work from the rest is just following a process, working it until you get it right. And once you get comfortable with the process you can be creative with the etching, making thin spots, nicks and scratches in the PnP Blue mask to produce a used look that duplicates the wear and tear of use. I guarantee you will be impressed - and you'll have done it yourself.
The etching solution used in the process described here is ferric chloride. It is readily available at Radio Shack and other electronics stores in a ready-to-use solution. It is strongly acidic and as such deserves attention. Always wear eye protection and rubber gloves when handling this or any other chemical.
Ferric chloride does not produce noxious gases when it reacts with brass. It can be safely used indoors, but I suggest staying out of the kitchen since ferric chloride stains badly. It will not attack plastic, glass or rubber. Read and follow all cautions on the packaged product.
Sourcing PnP Blue
The Techniks Inc. website at www.techniks.com has more information on PnP Blue, plus listings of other distributors in the U.S. and Europe.
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