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Painting metal to look like wood

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This instructable will show you how to give a wood-like appearance to a flat metal plate. This is a very simple process, which involves a coat of paint and a varnish finish.

I came up with this process (although I'm sure I didn't invent it) to make a rusted metal circuit box cover blend better with the wooden accents in our home. The circuit box was never properly installed, and as a result was just a mess of dangling wires and exposed switches. My original thought was to make a wooden door to cover this mess, but after searching through the storage shed, I found the metal box that was intended to cover the circuit box.

After a bit of sanding, a coat of paint, and a coat of varnish, we now have a beautiful wood-like circuit box that goes nicely with our wooden door and window frames.

Materials:
• Paint
• Varnish
• Something to paint

Tools:
• Paint brush
• Sand paper
 
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Step 1: Sand metal

Picture of Sand metal
Depending on the condition of the original metal you are working with, sand any rusted spots, and if it's a painted object, sand off the finish so the new coat of paint will apply properly. I used a metal sandpaper for this process.

That looks amazing, but make sure to check your local laws because here in north california it's illegal to paint circuit boxes.

irish2ice2 years ago
Awesome looking. I actually think it does look like wood, but would you please take a couple of pictures from further away? That way we get the full effect. Your close pictures are great for showing the detail though.
Winged Fist (author)  irish2ice2 years ago
Irish2ice - I found it very difficult to photograph this final product, as with the flash it created a glare, and without the flash it was just too dark to make out any detail.

I did this project on vacation in our beach house in Brazil, and now I'm back in NYC, and unfortunately don't have any better pictures to post of the final product. Maybe next time I visit I can get some better pics.
doowopdave2 years ago
It is probably just one's personal taste, but I think a simple two coats of a semi-gloss enamel would have looked better. Frankly I don't think this even resembles wood grain, but to each his own!
l8nite2 years ago
it does look a lot better
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