Finally! Finally I used my new welder- yay! I had been thinking about the Fleur De Lis Fence Rails I mentioned in an earlier post that I've been carting around for the last 2 years. I decided it was finally time to use them or lose them. A little back story about the fencing rails and why I love them so much. Besides the fact that they are Fleur De Lis' they have a really cool rusty patina that I love. They came from a fence that surrounded the parking lot of my old job. I would walk by everyday and gaze at them.
One morning as I walked to work I noticed someone had pulled two of them off. And one other one had been tampered with as well. Hmmm, what's a girl to do? Well I did nothing about it for over a week. And they were still there- calling my name. Confession time: one day after work I decided to go for it. I drove up, threw the 2 on the ground into the car and pulled (yanked..) the third off the fence! Was this wrong? Maybe, hindsight is 20 x 20. The fence overall is still fine, I'm not the one who pulled them off to begin with. So really I was just picking up litter of the street. And now I had some iron rails to do something cool with!
But what? I've been thinking about replacing the curtain rods in our living room for a while now. I've had them since college and they're not bad looking but nothing fancy. And they're all bent up from the many apartment moves in college. So I decided it was time for replacing.
I have 2 windows in my living room, one large and one small. I thought I could weld 2 of the rails together with the Fleur De Lis at the ends as finials and the third I might be able to find a matching Fleur De Lis to weld onto it for the smaller window.
I had to cut the rails to size to fit the windows. So I brought out my trusty Dremel Tool. I LOVE my Dremel. I was able to cut the rails cleanly easily.
Next I used my Dremel to grind to rust off of the edges. This way I'll be able to make better welds on clean steel.
See? Shiny and new!
Here's a shot of the bar once I cut the unwanted portion off.
Once I had all my rails cut to size it was time for the welding! I hadn't used this welder before so I wasn't sure how it would work. Plus I hadn't welded in a long time anyway- so I was pretty rusty. I had some trouble at first, the welder didn't seem to be working and I couldn't figure out why. After a while I realized it was having trouble sending the electric current through the metal because of the rust. It took awhile to warm up but once it got going it worked great.
Here's a shot of the 2 rails welded together to make one long one for the large window.
I was able to find a matching finial, it was only $1.50. Score!
If you happen to be a professional welder you might say the weld above is pretty ugly. And you would be right. This party gave me some trouble for whatever reason, but I was able to grind it down and smooth it out.
I needed some paint to match my new finial to my rusty old ones. This is the best Home Depot had to offer; if anyone has any other sources I'd like to know because I wasn't completely satisfied with the end result.
I also bought some new hangers for the curtain and painted those as well. I probably should have put some paper down but oh well- the rain will wash it away.
Side Note: If you are going to spray Spray Paint into a styrofoam cup; say so you can use it to paint the hooks that are already screwed into the wall- DON'T. Use a real plastic holder or something! Because the paint will eat through the cup and drip all over the floor. Then you will have to run to the kitchen with paint dripping everywhere, then run back and quickly clean up the paint before it dries and ruins your floor. I'm just sayin....
And viola! Finished custom curtain rods!
I really like how they came out, the brown complements the curtains and paint much better than the black ones I had before.
Can you tell which is the bar I "helped" off the fence?
I always try to use found objects in my projects but this could easily be done with new materials. The steel shop I bought the finial from sells the bars for $6.50 for a 24' long piece. That's so cheap! I may be redoing all my curtain rods!