Can copper be clear-coated?

scott.cr

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Hi guys, I've been wanting to set up some air lines in my garage using copper plumbing pipe with brazed fittings. The idea is to have utility air drops at the machine table, workbench and probably so I can air up the car tires too.

Some reasons why I wanted to use copper are cost, ease of installation, and sort of the look, but only the look if it's polished to a bright finish.

Can a common spraypaint-type clearcoat be applied directly to copper to keep it from tarnishing? Is there a better method? Any other ideas or comments?
 

Marduke

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I've used a specialty clear polyurethane on copper before for the purposes of keeping out moisture. It also had the effect of preventing tarnishing. It was Vishay brand, but only comes in small bottles.

I'm sure something cheaper and bigger would work similarly.
 

VanIsleDSM

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You want to use copper for the price? As in you like spending a lot of money?

Copper is a very expensive metal. I've seen plastic piping the for exact thing you're talking about that's built for air lines. You can cut it anywhere and attach the fittings to it. I've also been in many professional shops that just use 3/4" plumbing PVC. Everyone knows it's not meant to hold gaseous pressure, but it's only used for air lines 100psi or less.. at that point it's so overrated for what it's doing, meant for it or not.. I've never heard of anything ever breaking or coming apart. I think stapling a proper PVC air line, or even a good rubber line up around your place would be cheaper than copper.

As for coating the copper, if you really want the copper look, I believe lacquer may be the best option. I'm not sure, but I've heard it sticks to bare metals better than other types of clear coat. Make sure it's extremely clean and slightly roughed.

..wish I could afford to have a designer shop. Copper air lines, a marble work bench, forged titanium vice :)
 
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KC2IXE

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PVC under pressure is a bomb - and an OSHA violation, don't do it

Yeah, copper can be clear coated - why not?

The 2 traditional ways are copper, or black iron pipe, with iron being a LOT more common - that said, when I do my shop, it'll probably be done in copper! Why? Simple, when Dad passed away 2 weeks ago, I inherrited more copper pipe (from 3/8 up to 1.5") with fittings than I really know what to do with. Probably 40-50 lengths in his garage, along with rolls of tubing and the like. There is also a bunch of Iron pipe, EMT, and other stuff, 5-6 drums of Freon of various grades, all sorts of HVAC dryers, and stuff
 

X_Marine

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PVC under pressure is a bomb - and an OSHA violation, don't do it
Just for the record, I have 3/4" PVC running from a 100gal 2stage 5hp air comp about 120ft to my garage and then several T's for drops in different locations. It has be in use for over 20yrs and I keep 200psi on line and use small regulators where needed. It is very cheap and very easy to work with.

Have you priced copper lately? :ohgeez:

Good luck with it..
X/BillyD..
 

Oznog

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Well, copper's worth like $3/lb in recycling value alone. That's money there. You might sell it and just buy some "normal" air piping and hoses.
 
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