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I see many ibles made with black pipe here but rarely do they mention any coatings to prevent rusting. I also often build with rusty items where I need to cover the rust so it won't rub of on clothes etc. but don't want to lose the beauty of the patina. An architect once told me he used linseed oil to preserve rusted iron outdoors. I tried it but the damned stuff never fully dries! I could use polyurethane but the oxidation will continue underneath and it will eventually flake off. I've tried "rust stabilizers" but they turn the rust black so it loses it's color. I finally got turned on to a product from an old timer in a paint store I would probably never have found on my own.

Step 1: Penetrol

He recommended a product called Penetrol normally used as a paint additive to improve flow and adhesion that also seals and stops rust. It can be used alone as a base coat on bare metal and will fix the rust while preserving the appearance. The finish will be darker than dry rust but similar to rust sprayed with water or oil and can be top coated with a polyurethane for a more durable finish.

http://www.flood.com/paint-additive-solutions/pro...

Be sure to open and view the rest of this ible before sending me questions. ;-)

<p>Hey Brian. So Im building a wine tasting area with an industrial look to it. Decided to go with hot rolled steel sheets for flooring. Id like to preserve the rusty look and I see you recommended Penetrol. Now if I go with Polyurethane on top of that, how slippery would it be? Do you have any other recommendations for the top coat thats not slippery?</p><p>Thanks</p><p>Aman</p>
<p>What great information and helpful advice to those of us that love the rustic patina look. Thank you all for sharing and advising.</p><p>I also have a question regarding some inexpensive oil lanterns that I purchased off Amazon earlier this year. I opted for the uncoated sheet metal lanterns so that I could get them to rust, which they have marvelously. Now, I'd like to seal them to stop any further rusting, but also to maintain the existing look I have. It's a little tricky, becuase these lanterns will be used and stay out in the elements year round. The work great because rain does not get into the burner area so the wick stays dry. Would your recommendation work in my circumstance, or would the heat be a problem? I could get by with only treating the oil tank area, which would not produce heat, but I'd love to treat the entire exterior. Any thoughts or advice?</p>
<p>I already applied limseed oil, yup,doesn't dry. Now what? Try to rub off and uses penetrol? Thanks</p>
Don't know, not a paint guy. I'd check with a knowledgeable person at a paint store or Google around 'til I thought I'd found a good answer. When you figure it out, please post back here. There will be others that would be glad to know the answer.
<p>Brian, I will be using welded wire fencing for deck railing and want it to rust for color but then coat to keep it off hands and such. What do you recommend? Anything besides the SW Industrial Poly you know of? Here is a pic I borrowed off Google showing my intention, but this is Galvanized I don't want the silver look. thx, Mark</p>
<p>For outdoors, I would probably stick to the Penetrol and not use any polyurethane top coat. The Penetrol won't crack and peel as it ages in the sun like poly and can be reapplied without all the scraping and sanding if it needs it. </p>
<p>Thanks for the reply. I guess what confused me was a comment someone made that said Penetrol will not fully dry/cure. </p>
<p>Hi Brian, my wife bought a used Bourbon barrel with the intent of using it as an accent piece in our living room. The metal bands have some rust and I want to preserve the look. I stumbled upon this very helpful topic and have read through the comments, and I have a few follow-up questions:</p><p>1) The Penetrol instructions say &quot;for exterior use only&quot;, which has me a little concerned about the toxicity. If I am using it for an indoor piece, how long should it cure and dry before moving inside?</p><p>2) Will the Penetrol prevent the transfer of rust to hands and clothing, or will I still need to apply a coat of something else on top of the Penetrol?</p><p>3) You mention Penetrol is not very hard or durable. Since this will be an accent piece and rarely touched, do you still think a polyurethane coat is necessary?</p><p>4) Can I apply the Penetrol to the entire oak barrel, or should I mask it and apply only to the metal?</p><p>Thank you in advance!</p>
1) You'll have to check with the manufacturer on this. I don't recall seeing that warning before. I would think a polyurethane top coat would be sufficient to encapsulate it.<br>2 &amp; 3) Yes. &amp; It's a good idea. The Penetrol isn't a good final finish and the Poly is easy to apply. It will take more time to clean the brush than to put a coat or two on the bands.<br>4) There's no reason to put Penetrol on the wood but the Poly would work well and make the wood easier to keep clean.
<p>Thank you for sharing this product and information about it, especially that it is linseed oil based, which is not mentioned on their WEB site, literature, or the MSDS. I noticed that you added Step 2, as an after thought, for the Bot. I don't know when you added Step 3 but, I hope it works as you intended ;)</p>
Thank you Arnold. It's good to hear from you. I miss the show. Glad to see you haven't been mad into bacon yet. ;-)
I don't recall where I heard it was linseed oil based, so if none of the companies data says so, don't take it as gospel. That said, it makes sense, and it feels like it is, but I don't have any direct knowledge.<br><br>As for step 3, not really, but it did make me feel better at the time. ;-)<br>
<p>It takes someone like you with experience to understand what is there. About 32% of this product is a secret. The company is only required to mention the hazardous ingredient(s), and their percentage, through a MSDS. Roughly 68% of this product is some form of thinner and/or drying agent. This would explain why you don't have the same problem(s) previously experienced with the linseed oil drying/curing time and how it gets &quot;under the rust&quot; to stop further oxidation, while preserving the surface rust. Again, thank you for sharing this, your experience and time on this site. </p>
<p>Hi, I have a gorgeous old cast iron soap dish that I want to hang in my new walk in shower (I guess I'll have to screw it into the walls once they're tiled). Do you think this process will be enough to handle this kind of wet environment? I love the old patina, but my boyfriend will cement me behind the walls if it ends up rusting over all our new tiles. Thanks for the help and advice.</p>
<p>Nope. Don't do it.<br><br>It's not the water so much as the soap. I don't know why, but no coatings I know of will stand up to soap for long. Even the baked on epoxy paints they use to &quot;refinish&quot; old sinks and tubs will only last a few months unless the user is really over the top OCD about <strong><em>never</em></strong> letting any soap sit on the finish. If it is enamel over cast iron, you might be able to find someone doing re-enameling but they are very hard to find these days. True enamel is a fired on glass powder. DO NOT let anyone convince you that their spray on epoxy coating will work. If it was originally chrome plated, you can probably find a plater in your area who can re-plate it for you.</p>
I installed in my yard a metal goat sculpture that has been painted white. It has some small patches of rust here and there, which I want to keep--since they make the goat look more realistic. But I don't want the whole thing to rust. I love how it looks now--and want to keep it just as it is: mostly painted with a few rust spots. It'll be outside in the elements except winter). Can I achieve this?
<p>The Penetrol would stop the rust but I'm not sure if it's clear enough to put over white paint. I'd test it on something white first to see what you think.</p>
Hi Brian, <br><br>I've got some cold rolled steel table tops in a restaurant. Having difficulty keeping a finish on them as they are in everyday use, I've used a couple of different polyurethane finishes but always scratch and flake off. Any suggestions? Needs to be 100% food safe. Thanks
You might try waxing them. It would't flake but also wouldn't be scratch resistant and you might need to re-wax them occasionally but it would protect from the moisture of frequently wiping them down. What do you do now when they start to flake?
I just got a large metal planter that I have out rusting right now. I want the rust finish to stay but I'm concerned that the rust will run off and stain the surface it will be on. Will Penetrol solve this problem? And will Penetrol be all I need or should I use polyurethane as well?
<p>If it's inside I'd coat it with the polyurethane. It 's a harder surface and much easier to keep clean. If it's outside, I'm not sure. My instinct would be to not add the poly because the UV might cause it to peel eventually but I'd check with a good paint store to be sure. None of my stuff is outside so I haven't researched for those conditions.</p>
It will be outside. Will the Penetrol keep the rust from running off with rain?
<p>If it's well sealed it I would think it should but like I said, I'm not sure about outside applications. You may have to recite it periodically. Check with an expert at a real paint store, not a big box or local hardware store. You may also check with the manufacturer on their web site or tech support. <br></p><p>When you find out, post it here so others can benefit too.</p>
<p>For those with metal and iron they want to protect from rusting, look at Corrosion X. It isn't anything like Penetrol, so isn't ideal for the artistic applications, but it is remarkable for protecting that cabinet saw top and so forth.<br><br>I polished my cabinet saw top using worn diamond pads from my granite polishing adventures. When done, I had a mirror like surface. It was wonderful, but needed protection. I'm not fond of wax and such, because it just doesn't hold up and even a drop of sweat can leave evidence you were working. Corrosion X gave the table top long term protection. The sad thing was, it also hid the mirror finish.</p>
Good to know but this is really the exact opposite of what this post is about. Our goal here is preserving the natural look of rusted steel, not removing or hiding it.
<p>Point made. That said, let me offer an elaboration, which, I believe, will bring my post about Corrosion X into harmony with your purposes regarding preserving damage to metal and iron.<br><br>Corrosion X does the same thing Penetrol does. It, somewhat, does it in a fashion that makes it less obvious the rust has been treated. Using Corrosion X produces a less glossy result, However, like Penetrol, it darkens the rust significantly.</p>
<p>Since the Penetrol itself is not a good finish coat, I usually top it off with a few coats of flat or satin polyurethane for a harder, more durable finish. With the poly, you can choose whatever level of gloss you want. It looks like the CorrosionX is a light oil like WD40. That's not a finish I'd want on most household items.</p>
<p>Just for reference, and based on my extensive experience with farm equipment, like plows, disks and so forth, though we kept a lot of WD-40 around and found it handy, it was the last thing I'd depend on for rust or corrosion resistance, or for general lubrication. <br><br>Comparing Corrosion X to WD-40 is an apples/oranges thing. I use it on my commercial table saw, band saw, jointer and spindle sander tables. I would never dream of using any kind of oil, since it could mar a finish on mahogany, walnut and what have you.</p><p>Just to be clear, your tips and methods using Penetrol are time tested and proven. For example, I used it on the underside of the bed of a Rockwell Delta 46-450 lathe I'm restoring. Others have used it to protect underside and hidden surfaces of their collectible cars. </p>
<p>I was only comparing it to WD40 for it being a light oil and not a coating that would harden. The things I read all said Corrosion X was a penetrating oil. You'd never try to apply polyurethane over anything like WD40. Do they have a version of Corrosion X that will set up and take a top coat?</p>
<p>On the matter of Penetrol:</p><p>http://www.floodaustralia.net/products/anti_corrosion/penetrol-anti_rust.php</p>
<p>I just purchased two unfinished whiskey barrels. I want to preserve the natural look and use these as outdoor pub tables. Since there is a combination of steel and oak wood, what type of finish would you apply?</p>
Since it's already weathered, and you're using it outside and under a table top, I probably wouldn't put anything on it. Just raise it slightly off the ground so it won't trap moisture and it should last for years
<p>I have an old '82 Bronco that's rustin' apart in my hometown of Anchorage Alaska. While wanting to figure out a way to stop the Rust's excessive progression, I also wanted to keep the body looking like it does now. So out of curiosity, I searched until I stumbled upon this Instructables page, and now I have a way to do both. As a person with similar tastes in style, I just wanted you to know that it's great to finally see that someone else can appreciate the aesthetic nature of the natural(-ish) appeal of rust on an object, especially onesuch object that has travelled so many miles or worked so hard. (Over 300,000 miles on it and still pushing harder than ever.) It defines it's character, and the mind of one who finds beauty in it has more experience and character than one who finds fault. Oh, thanks, and please say thanks from all of us to the &quot;Old-timer&quot; who recommended this product if you can; we all would be stuck with black-colored painted metal, or nothing left at all, without his/her advice. </p>
<p>Quick question for you, the rust that was on your bronco, was it just a little on the surface of sheet metal? I have an Olds Alero that has rust from salting the roads and I want to keep the large flakes of rust on it, while keeping it from eventually making the frame break in half. </p>
Check out a Sherwin Williams product called Sher Clear for a possible top coat. An auto paint place might be able to recommend something better than plain polyurethane too. I don't imagine a few coats of regular polyurethane would hold up long on a car.<br>
<p>Thank you for the product recommendations.</p>
<p>Hi there</p><p>I ordered the product from the US, I tried it and the result is perfect. One more question please. I would like to use the rusted metal sheet outdoor. Do you suggest that I leave it with the Penetrol finish or would it be better to apply an extra coat of polyurethane varnish?</p><p>Thanks and have a nice day</p>
<p>I love your tip about Penetrol, I ordered some and its on its way now! As far as sealing/protecting do you have any advice on what I should use for a steel table top? Ive seen to use to use the polyurethane top coats, but there are so many kinds and most say &quot;for wood&quot;. Thank you so much for this post and any advice you might be able to offer :) </p>
<p>INDUSTRIAL STRENGTH POLY</p><p>A table top, specially a work table or dinning table, is a pretty tough environment. It's prone to lots of impacts and abrasion. At the least, I'd use several coats of polyurethane. You might also talk to someone at a Sherwin Williams store about SherClear. It's a HD industrial clear coating. It's pricey but incredibly tough. It's made for ships and equipment but a friend uses it to coat canvas floorcloths and it lasts her for years in high traffic areas and under tables and chairs.</p>
<p>Thank-you for this tip! My kids and I had fun rusting this sheet of metal with salt, vinegar &amp; bleach and then sealing it with Penetrol &amp; Polyurethane. How thick of metal do you recommend for a sink like you have pictured?</p>
<p>I think I used 12 ga. mild steel. That's .109 or a little less than 1/8 of an inch.</p>
<p>You have been 'oh-so-kind' in taking time to reply to all.... I hope that my question might not be crazy.... and yes, I get it that you are not a paint/etc expert...</p><p>I just ordered online my Penetrol due to your most fabulous info!!! (yeah!!)</p><p>My question is however.... upon attempting to research online my 'best reviewed option' of a good polyurethane, that many say &quot;water-based&quot;. And I get it --- that only means that 'clean-up' is water-based (or at least that's what the term used to mean)......<br>SOOOOO, without even taking my little 'google rabbit-hole-search' any further..... DO YOU recommend an oil-based or water-based polyurethane????? </p><p>While 'clean-up' doesn't make a difference to me... I just want the BESTEST of BEST applied right now. Touch-up later is not my concern. But finalizing my initial efforts will allow me to sleep well at night :))</p><p>Any rec's of your most favorite Poly????<br>I thank you for your time kind sir :))</p>
<p>Please forgive me for taking up further space, but just to clarify:</p><p>Do you rec an oil-based CLEAR poly or will a water-based CLEAR poly do just as well. My thought is that if the Penetrol is oil-based ---- that an oil-based poly will adhere much better than than it's water-based sibling......I would presume that the oil will also last much longer.</p><p>Either way, what is your favorite clear poly on the market these days that will adhere BEST to Penetrol?</p>
Flecto-Varathane has always been a solid brand. SherClear by Sherwin Williams down right miraculous but also about $100 a gallon.
<p>Never heard of Flecto.... </p><p>Your time and advice is gratefully appreciated; thank you Brian :)</p>
<p>ahhhhhh...... aka: Varathane!</p><p>Yep, one of the best!</p>
<p>We have a 112 y/o Victorian and the bathroom has a metal medicine cabinet. We've stripped the four layers of paint off it, sanded it and left it as is. We are noticing rust appearing when the cabinet is opened with wet hands. Will this product prevent that from happening and should we then cover with the poly? Thank you</p>
<p>Condensation from the shower will eventually do that to the entire surface. If you completely remove the rust down to bare metal again, you can just go straight to the clear poly. If you want to preserve the rust so it shows, use the penetrol first and top coat with polyurethane.</p>

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