Rusted Anchor & Ship’s Wheel Sign – Over 8′ Tall!!

A nautical themed charter school in the Bronx, New York, asked us to create this huge, rusty, patinaed, weathered wood statement sign to go in their lobby. We were very excited to try using iron pigment paints that really rust for the anchor, and experiment with creating a weathered wood look from HDU foam.

We finalized the design to be 8.5′ tall and 8′ wide and about 5″ thick, made in three layers. The anchor was so big that it required a metal frame embedded in the back to reinforce it. We routed out a channel in the back of the anchor and installed a custom welded frame, along with eye bolts for hanging.

Next, we carved and textured all the wood grain and hammered metal texture and began base coats of paint.

We painted the anchor with Modern Masters Iron Pigment paint and used their spray rust activator to patina the entire anchor. It worked great and the paint turned from dull grey to many shades of bright orange. To prevent the rusting process from going further, we locked it in with Modern Masters sealer. It’s a water based clear coat and it toned down the colors from vibrant orange to a warm, rich brown.

We painted the scroll with Modern Masters Copper paint and patinaed it with blue verdigris spray. The letters were routed out of 1/2″ acrylic sheet and spray painted with hammered copper and iron. The large ring was painted with bronze and patinaed like the scroll.

Next, we assembled the whole sign, took some celebratory pictures, and shipped it off to New York!!

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