I am updating my kitchen and plan to change out my cabinet knobs to a tarnished bronze finish. Any ideas on how to make my current brass looking hinges have a similar finish.
low $: spray paint or soak off the finish with a stripper and have the "bare metal"
more $: take to a metal plater and have them redone.
Solid brass or plated brass?
There are 'brass brow' chemicals available, but you have to remove and lacquer or protective finish on the brass.
The chemical do not always work well on plated brass.
Buy new hinges. YOu'll be many dollars and hours of labor ahead. Without rigorous preparation, painting something active like hinges doesn't work well, and most of the oil rubbed bronze spray paints don't look "right" without a lot of fussing with several shades and then clear coating the top when you're done.
Don't know if hinges are solid or plated brass. Is there a way to find out?
"Don't know if hinges are solid or plated brass. Is there a way to find out?"
First check is if they are magnetic.
If a magnet attracts them they are steel plated with brass.
If the magnet does not stick they could still be zinc, or another cheaper metal, with brass plating.
If you remove one you can scratch the back and see if it is plated.
A utility knife with a new sharp blade can easily get through plating.
A silver scratch means plated.
A good scratch (more than just the surface) that is still brass colored is likely to be solid brass.
I spray painted hinges on my bathroom cabinets because mobile homes tend to have funky sized hinges and I didn't want to hassle with finding the right sized replacements or filling & drilling holes.
To prep for painting, I soaked them in ammonia (or maybe ammonia & water). This step cleaned them and removed a clear coating. After rinsing & drying them off, I primed them with BIN & sprayed them with Krylon metallic spray paint. If I were to do it again, I'd get the Krylon Fusion & skip priming. Spray in light, even strokes, being careful to start and stop each stroke off of the item. Multiple light coats are better than heavy coats.
I think I may have sprayed too heavy & my finished result doesn't quite pass for satin nickel, but it was good enough for me. I've heard of others having luck with oil rubbed bronze. Since hinges don't get hard wear like knobs, the paint has a chance of holding up well.
For my kitchen hinges, I did what jessicaml did. Unfortunately, the satin nickel doesn't quite match the new knobs, but it isn't really that noticable. I did end up buying some new, because a few of the old ones were in bad shape -- that was a real pain, because it was an older style (1/4" wrap overlay) which is not available in most hardware stores like Rona, Home Depot, or Lowes. I eventually got them from a specialty hardware store, on order. (Even Lee Valley didn't carry them!)
I soaked mine in some stuff that took off the shiny finish. Ask in metalworking and they may know what it was. I cleaned them all with a wire brush and spray painted them front and back with oil rubbed bronze spray. They look great after 1.5 years of heavy use. No one has even noticed or asked.