Introduction: Basic of Weathering Metal: Tin Can

About: cosplayer from NZ, loves to do mad max and fallout related stuff

it has been ages since I wrote my last instructable, but today I will be showing you the basics of weathering metal, to turn this clean can into something more old and dirty


black paint(preferably acrylic)


rough sandpaper(the lower grit, the better)

medium grit(optional, but a great idea)

your item that you are weathering

Step 1: Prep

now, if you look closely, my tin can has some adhesive on it, I don't care, because this is just to show the technique, but for your actual project, if it has any adhesive you may want to remove this using hot water or even acetone if you have a lot of glue or a very strong glue that won't come off with water.

another step for prep is to sand the whole thing with medium-grit sandpaper, this will do two things: take away the shine of the can to provide a nice base for all of the other effects and it will make it easier for the paint to stick, you don't want all of your dirt effects to suddenly just rub off, that would be annoying.

Step 2: Paint Effect

this is the last step, water down some acrylic paint until it is the consistency of milk and then brush it all over the piece, make sure to get it into all the nooks and crannies.

now, the most important step is DON'T WAIT FOR IT TO DRY!, or else the entire weathering process won't work, instead, what you do, is wipe most of it away, leaving it in all of the nooks and crannies, as that is where dirt would usually stay, just remember you are not wiping it until it looks clean, you are wiping it until it looks dirty

and that is how to weather metal surfaces, keep in mind, you dont just have to use black paint, you can use anything, brown, rust, sand colour, it all depends on what dirt and ageing your metal piece has seen, weathering tells a story.