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Old 11-16-2017, 03:58 AM
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johnwesley johnwesley is offline
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Default brass patina by CopperState Drums

Thought you might be interested in my 2 latest projects. I've developed a process to give a natural patina to copper, brass, and bronze. Either a heavy patina or lighter depending on clients desire. Both of these are brass, one with heavier patina and one with a light patina. The lighter patina drum is a PDP which also got updated lugs and mag throw plus 3 way butt.
The process in no way alters the metal and is an "aging" process rather than paint or stain like some drum makers are doing. Not for everyone I know. Some like the shiny bling. JW
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Old 11-16-2017, 04:51 AM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

That's interesting. Do you do something to prep the shells, or do you just put the solution on the shell?
There was a thread about doing this fairly recently, and I think that person just put the shell and hardware is salt water.
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Old 11-16-2017, 05:16 AM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

There's a lot more to it than setting it in salt water, which has very little effect. The clear lacquer has to be removed before you can apply the patina mix which must set up for 48 hours minimum depending on how heavy a patina you want and whether you want varying colors. It took a couple years to develop my system to the point it actually worked and looked natural. Follow up is 2-3 coats of either satin or gloss enamel depending on client preference. So far I've done about a dozen for people around the country and all are ecstatic to have a drum like no one else. JW
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Old 11-16-2017, 06:42 AM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

I'm not really a fan of the patina look, but damn, that Pork Pie brass patina sure is a sweet sounding drum.
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Old 11-16-2017, 06:43 AM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

I just saw that DW brass snare on ebay. Very interesting treatment!
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Old 11-16-2017, 10:55 AM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

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Originally Posted by SYMBOLIC DEATH View Post
That's interesting. Do you do something to prep the shells, or do you just put the solution on the shell?
There was a thread about doing this fairly recently, and I think that person just put the shell and hardware is salt water.
If you're thinking of trying this, brass needs to be clear of any/all adhesives for the patina to develop on the surface, so scrub (with gloves, so your finger oils don't get on either) first.

Then you can spray on your solution (basic chemicals like ammonia and salt are enough, or you can get a little fancier and experiment with some different ones, but make sure you understand chemical reactions before you do!) After spraying suspend the drum (on dowels or something) over more solution inside a sealed enclosure and let the vapors assist the process. The longer it spends in the chamber the stronger the patina. Clear coat when you're finished.

I'd practice with some brass/copper sheets first to get the hang of it, but it's quite easy and fun to do at home.
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Old 11-16-2017, 06:10 PM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

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Originally Posted by running View Post
If you're thinking of trying this, brass needs to be clear of any/all adhesives for the patina to develop on the surface, so scrub (with gloves, so your finger oils don't get on either) first.

Then you can spray on your solution (basic chemicals like ammonia and salt are enough, or you can get a little fancier and experiment with some different ones, but make sure you understand chemical reactions before you do!) After spraying suspend the drum (on dowels or something) over more solution inside a sealed enclosure and let the vapors assist the process. The longer it spends in the chamber the stronger the patina. Clear coat when you're finished.

I'd practice with some brass/copper sheets first to get the hang of it, but it's quite easy and fun to do at home.
Actually the combo simple of ammonia and salt don't work very well by themselves.
As for suspending the drum in an enclosure and allowing vapors to aid the process takes a long time and can be impractical for safety reasons. (kids, pets)
I've tried a dozen different patina processes before finally coming up with my own that's safe, relatively quick, controllable in terms of patina depth and stability, and satisfaction of clients. JW
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Old 11-16-2017, 08:07 PM
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Default Re: brass patina by CopperState Drums

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Originally Posted by johnwesley View Post
Actually the combo simple of ammonia and salt don't work very well by themselves.
I beg to differ. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r_yqASgdb6Y

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As for suspending the drum in an enclosure and allowing vapors to aid the process takes a long time and can be impractical for safety reasons. (kids, pets)
I don't think overnight is terribly long, but the safety issues involved in working with chemicals are always valid.

Quote:
I've tried a dozen different patina processes before finally coming up with my own that's safe, relatively quick, controllable in terms of patina depth and stability, and satisfaction of clients. JW
Glad you and your clients are happy with your process! As you mentioned, many ways to skin this cat.
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