Wednesday, May 6, 2009

An experiment in stainless steel and blue paper

On the weekend I split a packet of Press'n'peel Blue with a mate of mine, because we both wanted to try it out, having only ever used magazine pages. I also bought some stainless steel wall-plates, used for light switches and audio systems etc. For a couple of days I tried to find something that would look good on a stainless steel wall-plate as a replacement for my boring white plastic light switch. I finally stumbled upon the back of a card. After mucking around with it in Gimp for a while, I finally got it scaled to the right size for my wall-plate. I decided then that this would be the perfect opportunity to test out the Press'n'peel Blue. Accordingly, I printed my image onto a sheet of it, and proceeded to align and iron it. FAIL.The bottom picture is my first attempt at the Press'n'Peel, and the top is the second attempt.
My iron was on too high a temperature, it was still on the setting I use for magazine pages. I turned it down to 'Synthetic' and tried again. FAIL. I don't know if it was poor technique, or if P'n'P doesn't work on stainless steel, or if it even works at all, but only about a third of the image adhered to the metal, the bits that I've drawn around were the only bits that adhered. So I went back to magazine pages, and, wha'd'you know, it worked. It wasn't perfect, but about eighty-five percent of the picture was there.

I took it out to the workshop and set up a brand new tank, this time with table salt as the electrolyte. After discovering that yet another fuse was blown in my power supply, I switched to batteries. My smaller battery was too small to have much of an effect, and when I put my bigger one on and tried to measure the current the tank was drawing, the jumper leads exploded. So I hooked it back up, but with three pairs of jumpers instead of one. Much better, and it was pulling about six amps.

After blowing up lots of little hydrogen bubbles, I took it inside and cleaned it off. It's pitted in places, and looks very raw, but it has a certain
je ne sais quoi to it, appealingly aged.Here it is installed on my wall, I put some Prussian blue oil paint over it to bring out some of the detail, but the camera doesn't show it.


  1. WOW
    dude that is totally cool!!!
    i love your ideas :)

  2. Agreed. You are really talented and creative! I have no idea how you come up with these ideas but they are really good. As awesome as your sense of style :P


  3. i hope you dont mind i linked this page to mine only cos i think its really awesome :P and kinda fits with the whole decorate your own room style :P

  4. Thank you Millie and Mez. Your kind words are appreciated.

    I don't mind if you link to me, in fact I'd love it if you did. I was in fact thinking how appropriate this particular entry would be to your blog just this afternoon.