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  • Coloring Metal

    So I have this أœberdorky idea for remodeling my living room. I'm going to give it a space theme (my stereo cabinet is going to be a scale model of the Apollo launch tower, the CD rack is going to be a model of a Saturn V, the couch will be modeled after the couches on the Apollo capsule, the loveseat will be part of the rover, the magazine rack will look like the LM's leg, the end table will look like the Soviet Venera probe, the ceiling fan is going to look like Skylab, I haven't figured out what I'm going to do with the entertainment center or the recliner yet) and I want my coffee table to look like a solar panel on a space craft. I've been checking the prices on solar panels, but they're all more than I want to spend (and sadly, the surplus sites I know of no longer carry broken solar cells), so I'm hoping someone knows a cheap and easy to get that blue/silver metallic look that solar panels tend to have. Anyone have any ideas?

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  • #2
    Weellll, for the entertainment centre you need an all glass cockpit. Let's see... for that solar cell look... Some chrome plate art brass sheet metal, pin-striping tape to mask in appropriate connection pattern, metallic hammer tone undercoat, heavy transparent blue overcoat, 12x9 volt batteries in series connected to the metallic edges of the table to convince guests that it is real. Should do.
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    • #3
      Mig cockpits with instruments, sheared before and after pilots position are about $6500..

      Be a nice computer desk.

      David..

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      • #4
        Tuckerfan:
        Canadian Tire has cheap arrays www.canadiantire.com

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        • #5
          Thrud, this must be some use of the word "cheap" I'm not familiar with. Assuming that the prices are Canadian dollars, and that the exchange rate is $1.00 Canadian to $.50 USD, the least expensive array they list comes out to $100 US. It's also a bit small for covering the top of a coffee table. The scrap panels I've seen in the past were going for something like $10/sq ft. which is what I was hoping to spend.

          I know that there's some way of getting the necessary appearance using sheet metal, a blow torch, and a couple of chemicals, but I can't recall what it is. Still, I'll keep the site in mind in case I can't come up with anything better.

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          • #6
            Tuckerfan:
            They were not that expensive last time I was in CT.

            There is a solar cell company here in Edmonton, I will see if they have anything cheap for you.

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            • #7
              Just shine up your sheet metal, lay out a grid with tape (like Evan says) then use gun blue. A couple of coats and some super-fine steelwool should get it looking pretty close. Lay glass over it and let everyone wonder where you got that $2,000 solar panel.

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              • #8
                <font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Thrud:
                Tuckerfan:
                They were not that expensive last time I was in CT.

                There is a solar cell company here in Edmonton, I will see if they have anything cheap for you.
                </font>
                Thanks, Thrud. I'm just looking to get the cosmetic appearance of solar cells, so if they've got scrap ones they'll let go for next to nothing, I'm surely interested.


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                • #9
                  Tuckerfan:
                  I will try to get down there in the following week and get back to you.

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