How to Paint Shiny Metallic Objects

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Things You'll Need

  • Rags

  • Mineral spirits

  • Blue painter's tape

  • 3- to 4-inch paintbrush

  • Etching primer

  • Oil-based paint


Never use masking tape en lieu of blue painter's tape or you may end up with bleed-through.


Because etching primer is acidic, it helps to abrade the surface of shiny metallic objects. This helps to promote adhesion. Never attempt to paint over shiny metallic objects without using an etching primer first or you will end up with chipping and peeling.

Image Credit: Hemera Technologies/ Images

Most amateur painters know the basics of applying paint to most surfaces. However, when it comes to painting shiny metallic objects, many do-it-yourselfers are at a loss. Because they are hard and slick, metallic surfaces aren't ideal for paint adhesion. More often than not, paint tends to peel and chip from these types of surfaces over time. If you plan to paint shiny metallic objects, you need to know the proper preparation techniques that are critical to promoting a long-lasting, attractive finish.


Step 1

Dampen a rag with mineral spirits.

Step 2

Wipe down the shiny metallic objects with the moist rag. Allow 10 minutes for the mineral spirits to evaporate before continuing.

Step 3

Cover any areas you do not want painted with blue painter's tape.

Step 4

Apply the etching compound to the shiny metallic objects using the 3- to 4-inch paintbrush. Be careful to smooth any runs or drips.


Step 5

Allow two hours for the etching primer to dry.

Step 6

Clean the 3- to 4-inch paintbrush using mineral spirits. Use your fingers to massage the mineral spirits deep into the bristles of the brush.

Step 7

Repeat step six two more times to ensure that all of the primer is cleaned from the paintbrush.

Step 8

Repeat step four except use paint instead of primer.



Ryan Lawrence

Ryan Lawrence is a freelance writer based in Boulder, Colorado. He has been writing professionally since 1999. He has 10 years of experience as a professional painting contractor. Lawrence writes for High Class Blogs and Yodle. He has a bachelor's degree in journalism and public relations with a minor in history from the University of Oklahoma.