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Painting Cob  RSS feed

 
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Location: latitude 47 N.W. montana zone 6A
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Ok; Last season I discovered that concrete dye mixed in a batch of cob made a nice brick red color for my barrel. This year I discovered that you can mix those dry ,add water and paint directly on your cob! That got me thinking about colors other than red /black. I haven't started coloring yet, but I have been learning about natural pigments. Seems there is a myriad of colors that can be "painted" directly on cob. Most all are heat stable to over 340 F . The issues are, the binder or sealer will not hold at higher temps. Without a binder / sealer coat, your painted cob will "dust off" over time and need to be reapplied, not a big problem for me as I seem to rebuild every spring! I have not been able to test yet but I was told that near 200 F shellac mixed with pigment will start to varragate and change colors, (could be a cool effect). The pigment /shellac mix won't dust off with the binder,and should last quite a while on the lower part of the barrel but not past 1/2 way up. I found a great website that sells all natural pigments with an outstanding range of colors. http://www.earthpigments.com/ I currently have a mayan green and mayan royal blue that I purchased from them and I have red & black concrete pigments from H.D. I may get some white as well, either a white pigment or a lime wash, as I may want a "white canvas" for my colors to be correct. . Without a binder such as waxless shellac your color will dust off, but if all you have to do is mix up some dry pigment add water and reapply then your barrel can be a work of art in progress . As far as your mass, if its cob. It can be any color or have any kind of art painted on and sealed with a binder (such as shellac) and it should last for years with little upkeep. How cool is this ! Apparently using pigments in cob is a thousands of years old idea... using it on a RMH barrel or mass is not. This could change the complaint of ( I have an oil barrel in my living room ) for ever ! The big question for me is WHAT DO I PAINT ? A scene ? a color pattern ? Not being an artist maybe I should do caveman stick figures and hand prints ? lol The possibilities are endless.
 
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Hi Thomas,

The big question for me is WHAT DO I PAINT ? A scene ? a color pattern ? Not being an artist maybe I should do caveman stick figures and hand prints ? lol The possibilities are endless.



Well, per our other discussion, and now that you have asked directly... When this topic of "ugly stoves" and now a "oil barrel" comes up, I tend to turn to my pragmatic self and follow tradition...

Traditionally, masonry heaters that needed (or their owners wanted) them to get "fancied up" turned to the world of ceramics. Painted (glazed) tile and glass is the best and most enduring way to add color to these "heating devices."

For the masonry heaters there are countless tombs in multiple languages that cover this subject. For the barrel I would recommend a wire armature not much bigger than the barrel that tile could be afixed to in whatever pattern, color, format and/or texture on whishes. I have seen dragons, or abstracts and the choices are infinite. This does take more work and involves other things to learn but is the only "guaranteed" durable color treatment I know of for "hot surfaces" other than acid oxidation and related which is not something I enjoy doing when I've done it...

For the cobb part, there are just so many ways...You will enjoy that adventure all on its own...

Good Luck, and look forward to seeing what you do...

j
 
thomas rubino
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Cool enough the other eavning to do a short fire in the rocket. Mixed up some mayan pigment & water and put some test spots starting at the top of the cobbed barrel and moving down to the bottom. Then I sprayed a commercial shellac over some but not all. I then mixed some pigments with water glass and painted one spot on the cob and two spots on the bare metal lid of the barrel. Didn't run the barrel up to full temp only got just over 600 on the barrel top. Results are as follows ; pigment & water spots are perfect no change with heating at all. spots thin sprayed with shellac retained all their color but lost the shellac protection and afterwards I could rub them off. The mix of water glass & pigment failed completely on the cob, it curled up and fell off as it heated. However on the top of the barrel where temps were in the 600 F range the water glass solidified and stuck with the color as bright as when it started. Will that hold when the barrel top runs over a 1000F ? I only ran the rocket for an hour and i doubt I will get a chance before next winter to really get the thing heated up. I plan on getting some quality waxless shellac and experimenting more with thicker coats at different spots to see if I can find a heat point where it can be safely applied.
 
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