Corten steel is a commonly used steel that will rust over time when exposed to the weather. Usually rust on your items is a bad thing, however, it has been and is being used more and more as a decorative option. The rusty appearance gives a great rustic or outdoorsy feel. The natural tones of the rust can give any picture a completely unique look due to the natural randomness of the steel rusting.
The process of creating an artistic rust finish on corten steel.
1. When the steel is manufactured and laser cut it has a black appearance, there is no rust at this point.
2. Once the panel has been bent, welded, and laser cut, we place a natural acidic solution on the panel and let it dry which drastically speeds up the rusting process. We usually have to apply the solution several times letting it dry each time.
3. Once the panel has started rusted nothing will stop the process. We however do not want the panel to keep rusting at a normal rate because it will start to rust out after several years. In order to stop this, we apply an oil based coating to significantly slow the process. When this is first applied it will darken the natural beauty of the orange rust color.
4. As stated before the rust will re-appear and give it the beautiful rust finish we are looking for and it will last for a much longer period.