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Big Lots Lantern Distressing Technique

2492 Views 5 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  Hairazor
This is the way I distressed the lantern from Big Lots in their outdoor section.

How-To: Paint the lantern glass (after you beat it up of course)
Finished product here

Tools of the trade:
  • heavy chain (15' tow chain pictured)
  • 5 gallon bucket
  • misc steel/bolts
  • pliers
  • dismantled lantern

1.) Dismantle the lantern completely, save screws
2.) Remove glass and set aside
3.) beat it up.

*Keep in mind it's made with Chinese metal so don't get carried away when beating it up or you will destroy it.

Here is what it looks like originally:

Put parts in the bucket you want to age:

Get your chain set up by laying it out then folding it up so when you drop it in the bucket, it "pours" out of your hand.

Place chain wad over bucket:

Drop chain (basically "pour") it in the bucket:
*Awesome action shot*
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Chain is completely inside the bucket:

***REPEAT until desired look is achieved***

I flogged the lantern a little also with a shorter piece of chain I had. If you do you this, be careful not to hit yourself with the chain. It will hurt.

End result: (about 5 mins of repeated chain dropping)

The top and bottom rims that the glass sits in will be bent over preventing the glass from fitting. Take the pliers and bend it accordingly.

**Side note**
A lot of people seem to buy this lantern. Brush on a semi-paste paint & epoxy stripper to take the paint off if desired. After several minutes sand or grind it off. If you use a power tool, wear glasses because little bits of the chemical will fly off in the process. Don't get the stripper on your hands for very long, it'll burn and take your skin with it. I washed my hands with it once to get paint off (I obviously ignore directions and common sense). It will start to burn for awhile then your skin will peel for days.

To naturally rust, submerge in water for a day or so then let drip dry until desired look is achieved. Coastal folks, do the same but remove from elements sooner than later so the salty air won't annihilate the metal too much.

Reassemble, add finishes and incorporate into your application.
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I like how you beat up the metal with the chain. Nice dents left behind.
The scientifically accurate term for this technique is "distressing":) It's also used to make wooden furniture look as if it's been around the block a few times, except you usually can't put furniture into a bucket.
Great how to! Proof that about anything can be achieved by beating someone-- :eekvil:umm, I mean something with a heavy chain! :D
Good one LordH. Added bonus, a good way to work off stress!!
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