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Proper paint for old cast iron steam radiators???!

Jim_21 Member Posts: 3
Can anyone advise if Rustoleum Silver Spray paint is acceptable to use on old cast iron steam radiators, or is a special paint required??


  • Max Frister_2
    Max Frister_2 Member Posts: 2
    Painting old radiators

    The rustoleum paint will work fine for a radiator or two. If you have access to proper spray equipment, you can mix your own by mixing powdered metal with "bronzing liquid", clear automotive lacquer, or just oil. The drying oil (linseed or tung) is the traditional approach and yeilds a beautiful, non-glossy metalic finish.

    Powdered metal is aluminum and various bronze colors is available from US bronze Powders, 516-485-5544. It is also available from better paint stores, art and pottery supply stores.

    -- Max

    Obligitory warnings: spray painting is dangerous. Do it with plenty of ventilation and wear a respirator and protective clothing. Polymerizing coatings can spontaneous combust. Allow all rags to dry flat and/or soak in water before throwing them away.
  • scrook_2
    scrook_2 Member Posts: 610
  • Mike T., Swampeast MO
    Mike T., Swampeast MO Member Posts: 6,928
    Curious Max

    Are those the REAL bronze powders? I've been using ones that are actually mica and they seem to work very well. I do think though that my "copper" "bronzing" contained powdered aluminum (or something) in addition to the mica as it mixed VERY differently than the rest.

    When I tried to find the actual powdered bronze over the web couldn't seem to find a source in anything but industrial quantities. Also read that in raw state, powdered bronze is EXCEPTIONALLY damaging to the respiratory system with one good inhaled "dose" causing permanent damage.
  • JOE_24
    JOE_24 Member Posts: 12
    radiator paint

    on this website under hot tech topics there is an in depth article about painting rads. under
    Does color of radiator matter aug. 12,1999
  • Max Frister_2
    Max Frister_2 Member Posts: 2

    Yes, these are real bronze powerders and sometimes mixed with aluminum to acheive a particular color effect. Bronze itself is a pretty generic term and includes a multitude of alloys copper with tin, zinc, aluminum, lead, magnesium, etc.

    I am not surprised that it is bad stuff but I don't think it is overly dangerous. Here is a link to one suppliers MSDS for it. It basically says don't breath or eat it but it is not especially alarming.

    - Max

    http://www.mohawk-finishing.com/mhk_cds/product_msds/M380-109.pdf?prodname='Bronzing Powder'
  • Mike T., Swampeast MO
    Mike T., Swampeast MO Member Posts: 6,928
    Thanks for the source!

  • BillW@honeywell
    BillW@honeywell Member Posts: 1,099

    HEPA cartridge on a respirator is recommended for any finely powdered metal, if using a solvent or drying agent, back the HEPA up with a black organic vapor cartridge combo. Avilable from the Direct Safety catalog, or from most distributors.
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