By Ciber from WA
Before painting, clean the area with rubbing alcohol!
You'll need to use a High Temperature paint. You can either buy a paint made to paint car motors or you can buy a special paint that's made for wood stoves. I would use spray-paint. The high-temperature spray paint is not hard to find. It's sold with all the other spray paints at Home Depot and other stores. You may find a larger selection of high-temp pain at auto-parts stores.
If you buy "regular" paint that is not made to get hot, it may easily bubble-up, crack or chip-off from the heat of the fire.
To paint over something shiny and metallic, you'll want an OIL-based paint or Enamel, not "water-based"!
* Prep Work:
To paint brass, you'll need to first give it some "tooth" by roughing it up a little with sand paper or steel wool, then prime (high temperature) then paint (high temperature). Sometimes you can find a paint/primer mix.
Some high-temp paints don't "set-up" until they are heated. Read the directions on the can thoroughly.
After sanding, remove any dust, then wipe-down the whole area with rubbing alcohol and a paper towel. Sanding may sound like a hassle, but it has to be done! (unless you are using Hammerite paint)
* Other High Temperature:
Don't accidentally buy "stove black" the cream wood stove paints (that look like canned shoe-polish). They are made for painting cast-iron or steel wood stoves. These creamy paints usually come in matte-black, rarely can you get them in other colors (like brown, hunter and navy). I have used this kind of wood stove paint many times and they are simply wonderful. They can make an old rusty wood stove look like brand-new again! But they can't be used over metal or glossy areas (like yours). Buy high-temp spray pain instead.
If you have glass doors, take wet newspaper or wet computer paper and stick this wet paper to the glass. Be sure to use blue masking tape to cover anyplace you don't want painted. If you need to mask-off bricks, sometimes tin-foil works best, because you can easily make the foil adhere to the bricks by running a cloth or your hand along the foil until it conforms to the shape of the bricks and temporarily sticks to them. Also, put newspaper under the painting area.
If you want a hammered metallic finish, you can buy Hammerite spray paint. Hammerite looks amazing and comes in many metallic colors and there is no need for primer.
Be sure to open your windows because it is a stinky oil-based paint. I don't know if Hammerite is a high-temp paint, so if the fireplace is for more than "show" and you actually use it, check the back of the can or ask the Home Depot paint person.
If you use Hammerite, you won't first need to sand the area. Hammerite comes in many colors including an antique brass and a pewter look. It's a wonderful, durable brand!
Hammerite usually has a "hammered" texture, but it also comes in a smooth satin or gloss finish. Another nice thing about Hammerite is you can paint right over rust.
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How do you paint fireplace doors that are brass? I am contemplating taking on this as a project and am not sure where to start?