Sunday, August 10, 2008

Oil Painting with Tim

Tim has taken up a new hobby, oil painting.

He isn't painting on canvas. He prefers to paint on wood or metal. He isn't using a wide variety of colors. In fact, his painting is rather monochrome and dark.

He is painting with used motor oil.

This is a little trick we learned from the neighbor. Used motor oil can be used to paint untreated wood and metal. Here you can see the manure spreader and a gate that have been painted. The oil soaks into the wood to preserve it. On metal, it helps prevent rust.

Our neighbor uses this method on several of his outbuilding as did his father before him. It stains the wood a deep gray color as you can see in this photo, except of course for the red doors. Apologies for the shadows in this shot.

The oil we used was saved from servicing the vehicles around here. It is a cheap and easy way to make our wood and metal last. The largest drawback I see from it is that it is a little messy. Not so much more than paint, but it did seem to take a little longer to dry.

I hope Tim enjoys his new hobby, there are a lot of gates and other wood to paint around here!


  1. Wow, neat idea! It looks so rustic too. I never knew...

  2. With 8 gates, a goat house, a chicken coop, a pig barn , and maybe a house, I better get moving....

  3. That looks like a great idea. With the metal, would you need to reapply every so often? Would it wash off in the rain? I'm very stupid about that sort of thing.

  4. Janet,
    It does soak in a little like Rustoleum, so it doesn't need re "painted" all the time. I'm not sure how often it will need reapplied though.

  5. I will reapply when I think it needs it. When it looks like it is starting to dry out. It is preventative maintenance.

  6. That looks like something fun to paint with! I wanna try!

  7. What an excellent way to recycle used oil! I'll have to keep this in mind.