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Metalwork

Metal paint removal

Wrought iron and aluminium garden furniture, cast iron radiators and other similar goods appear for blast cleaning all the time. We have seen some amazing pieces over the years.

Cast iron fireplaces, radiators and the like can be returned to their original unpainted appearance in many cases, provided they have not gone rusty or been blasted or abraded before. It you grit blast them you get a clean dull grey metal finish which can be painted or lacquered etc, but you need to do something or it will corrode fairly readily. If you clean them with soft plastic media you can remove the paint and expose the gunmetal black metallic surface of the original cast iron without damaging it. This can be left natural, lacquered, or in the case of the fire surrounds then graphite paste can be applied to give an almost pewter look (not good around children who might touch.)

About Corrosive Salts
Wrought iron and cast iron are course grainy metals and comparatively porous structures which allow moisture and corrosive salts to get deeper into the surface of the metal than with say steel. When blasting them, they blast clean and look great - for a while - but the surface soon starts to oxidise (rust). This is because invisible salts are in the surface of the metal where the blasting can't reach them. We take the item outside and hose it down with water and the rust forms almost before your eyes, then we blast it again, and repeat the cycle until we are happy the salts are gone. Our phosphate treatment helps to stabilise and protect the surface until it is painted.