Recently we were asked to repair an umbrella stand. The left hand stay was missing. Replacing parts on cast iron objects can be expensive. To cut down on costs and avoid having to go to a foundry to have the part cast I decided to replicate it in steel. The steel would be then coloured to look like cast iron.
The missing bit had what looked like crudely turned parts. These were in the shape of flower petals, with a square section holding them together. These turned parts were replicated on the lathe and the rough flower petal shape was filed using a triangular file. The square section was made from 16mm steel tube with a thickness of 3mm. This square tubing was then creased down the middle of each flat side, its entire length. This produced a subtle star section that replicated the other side of the stand.
The parts were then TIG welded together to obtain a small unnoticeable weld area. The whole replicated part was then aqua blasted to give the surface a good key for blackening, so as to look like cast iron. The blackening was achieved using Zebo Grate Blackening, which is rubbed on with a rag, left to dry and then buffed up to give it a mildly glossy metallic lustre. As you can see from the photographs the replicated part is almost undetectable.
By Terry Ives