Home > skills, techniques & education > Adventures in Brass: Part One ~ Oxidizing

Adventures in Brass: Part One ~ Oxidizing

I inherited a lot of trophy brass for my engravers. Besides practicing engraving, I thought I would try my hand at some fun techniques and see what happens. I haven’t had any formal training in metal nor have a worked with it before, other than some crude wire work. I just like to think up an idea and try it out and see what comes of it.

The first thing I did was create patterns on the brass plate using a paper embosser.

Then I needed to rub the surface with a very fine steel wool as trophy plate has a coating to protect it from tarnishing. The steel wool will remove the coating and this is the area that we will oxidize. The effect depends on how much of the coating you remove, but generally, the recessed areas will remain with the coating while the top will not.

The brass oxidizer I have is for the colour black and I got it from an engraving supplier, but is available from many sources including jewelry supply shops. This is an acid so you want to wear gloves and keep out of reach of children.

I used a Q-Tip to apply the solution to my brass plate.

I applied the oxidizer evenly over the surface of the brass plate.

Almost instantly, you will see the brass turn black.

Wipe off the excess…and there you have it. Oxidized, patterned brass. I applied a jewelry wax sealer to the end product.

So what to do with this brass plate? Part two will be the a peek into the projects…

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  1. April 19, 2010 at 12:10 am

    It looks great Leilani !! Looking forward to seeing what projects you come up with 🙂
    Cheers,
    Tasha

  2. April 19, 2010 at 8:40 am

    Oh Leilani- looks like you’re having so much fun with it!! Fantastic textures & designs. I look forward to seeing your final pieces.

  3. April 19, 2010 at 3:01 pm

    Those look great Leilani. I can’t wait to see what you do with them.

  1. April 19, 2010 at 7:55 pm

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