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blacken aluminum and weathering wood


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#1 Gluhead

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 03:14 PM

Hey guys,

First, I need solutions to these problems that don't involve a specialty product made for the job. My modeling budget is about as close to zero as it can get, so I need solutions that come from typical household items, if at all possible. Really cheap and available about anywhere may also work in a pinch.

Problem 1 - I need a way to weather wood. I'd prefer that the effect was more subtle than extreme.

Problem 2 - I'm looking for a way to blacken aluminum without having to paint it or anodize it...some type of chemical reaction that darkens it rather than lightens.

Thanks in advance :)

#2 Ace-Garageguy

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 04:23 PM

2) To the best of my knowledge, there is simply no easy chemical interaction that will blacken aluminum. Immersion in lye or oven cleaner (sodium hydroxide) will sometimes leave a blackish smut on aluminum, but it's not even or attractive. It can also produce a hazardous gas. There are several products like
Birchwood Casey Aluminum Black

used by gunsmiths that will do the trick.

1) Many many years ago I built model railroads on occasion, and I found that depending on the type of wood, model paints thinned and applied as washes by brush, and even watercolors, could produce very realistic weathering of wooden structures. Experiment.

#3 Joker

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 05:13 PM

This is Chuck Doan Fotki Link and work...just stunning
On the second thing..do this Outside please..
oven cleaner..do a test piece first

Chucks Fotki Link...http://public.fotki....d498cf9e87.html
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Joker

#4 Fat Brian

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Posted 15 November 2012 - 07:42 PM

I achieved some fairly realistic weathering of wood by taking waterbased black paint and diluting with 91% alcohol and the soaking the pieces in it. It gives a good gray tone like wood left unprotected outside.

#5 southpier

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 04:49 AM

isopropyle alcohol & india ink or shoe dye for wood. if only a small batch, try A-West Weather It. they also make Blacken It for metal, but i have never used it on aluminum.

http://www.micromark...fl-oz,7266.html


http://www.micromark...fl-oz,7267.html

#6 VW Dave

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 06:06 AM

No ideas on the blackened aluminum, but I can help on the wood weathering.

A model RR scenery guru I know clued me in to a 'stupid easy' method: waterbased India ink thinned with isopropyl alcohol. A brief soak in the solution, followed by drying on paper towels overnight(or half the day if it's sunny) yields a nice gray 'neglected' finish:
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I added some knots and nails with a Pigma 005 artists' pen, and drilled out a few bigger knotholes. I use a rectangular Tupperware container for the soaking, and an old pickle jar to store it for reuse(and prevent loss by evaporation).

#7 Gluhead

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 08:31 AM

Thanks, guys. These are all great looking examples (Chuck Doan...Diorama God...good grief lol).

I'm going to try out the alky/india ink deal tonight. I'm really after a more subtle effect on this particular piece, so hopefully I can find a sweet spot with duration, etc.

#8 Ramfins59

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Posted 16 November 2012 - 09:07 AM

I've never tried any homemade solutions for making wood look aged... I have used stuff called Weatherall that I picked up at a hobby shop which gives wood an aged look... just dip it in the bottle and it works great. Not expensive stuff either.