Mountain Project Logo

Best paint for SS hangers/ anchors?


Original Post
Dan Bachen · · Helena, MT · Joined Mar 2010 · Points: 588

Since we're still snowed in up north, figured I'd use this time to do some prep-work for the upcoming season. What type of paint or other product are folks using to camo their hangers and anchors? Thoughts on what holds up well when applied to SS (if it matters)?
Thanks!

Malcolm Daly · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2001 · Points: 380

Sand off the polish with a piece of emery paper then paint it with your favorite colors of Rust-Oleum. The ones I put in Eldorado 24 years ago are still in fine shape.

I painted on a mid-brown shade and let it dry, then dotted with black and gray.

People still complain that they can’t see the next hanger.

Climb safe,
Mal

bus driver · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Aug 2009 · Points: 1,180

Here’s a link to some other discussions on the topic. Seems painting is a bad idea as it traps moisture.  Stainless hangers usually are pretty dull and thus fairly camo without painting them.  I’ve placed painted carbon steel, painted stainless, and have since moved to using non painted stainless exclusively.  So check back with me in about 25 years for some data on the different options. 


https://www.mountainproject.com/search?q=Painting%20hangers   

Dan Bachen · · Helena, MT · Joined Mar 2010 · Points: 588

Thanks! Searching "paint" instead of "camouflage" returns better results. I remember reading one of these years ago, but couldn't find it in the forum archives.

Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490

We don't encourage or recommend painting stainless bolts, not only will you increase the chance of corrosion you prevent the bolt being inspected.
You can heat-tint stainless with a normal blow-torch to achieve any colour between pale straw through the browns to deep magenta and this increases the protective oxide layer at the same time.

Brandon Fields · · Boulder · Joined Apr 2016 · Points: 445

How about aluminum gates, Jim? I just put together all these anchors before I realized that the red gates are heinous. They are aluminum gates on plated steel captive biners.
eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 523
Brandon Fields wrote:
How about aluminum gates, Jim? I just put together all these anchors before I realized that the red gates are heinous. They are aluminum gates on plated steel captive biners.

Assuming you're placing these somewhere in the front strange, I wouldn't worry about painting the gates. The biner will probably wear out before corrosion on the gate becomes an issue. 

Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490

Our experience is the gates seize up and get corrosion cracks around the pivot pin. Since they don't conform to the EU standard or UIAA we don't have anything to do with that style of biner anyway.

Brandon Fields · · Boulder · Joined Apr 2016 · Points: 445
eli poss wrote:

Assuming you're placing these somewhere in the front strange, I wouldn't worry about painting the gates. The biner will probably wear out before corrosion on the gate becomes an issue. 

That's kind of what i was thinking myself, but i was second guessing myself. The $$ was on point for these, but it's hard stomaching putting anything up that isn't just grey.

Brandon Fields · · Boulder · Joined Apr 2016 · Points: 445
Jim Titt wrote: Our experience is the gates seize up and get corrosion cracks around the pivot pin. Since they don't conform to the EU standard or UIAA we don't have anything to do with that style of biner anyway.

I need a direct feed into your brain. I wish i knew 1/100th what you do. Thanks again for the info!

Dan Bachen · · Helena, MT · Joined Mar 2010 · Points: 588

Thanks Jim! Hit one of my hangers with a torch for < 1 minute and its now is significantly more dull and well colored for our local limestone.Below is a comparison between a new and torched hanger. 

Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490

This is roughly the darker shades, it´s kinda artistic playing with the heat (or erratic)!

mattm · · TX · Joined Jun 2006 · Points: 1,381

Can the same light torch treatment be done on the other stainless components?  Say I want to dull the long link chain and ramshorn? I’m assuming yes but ...

Bobby Hutton · · Gold Country CA · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 839
mattm wrote: Can the same light torch treatment be done on the other stainless components?  Say I want to dull the long link chain and ramshorn? I’m assuming yes but ...

I second that question. What are the signs that you have over cooked the steel? If that is possible with a torch. 

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 523
Bobby Hutton wrote:

I second that question. What are the signs that you have over cooked the steel? If that is possible with a torch. 

If it turns blue, you've damaged it. This is supposed to be the result of "extreme heat" (ie something like a fire that burned down a building) so I'm guessing it's pretty difficult if not impossible to do with a torch but not sure. 

Jim Titt · · Germany · Joined Nov 2009 · Points: 490
eli poss wrote:

If it turns blue, you've damaged it. This is supposed to be the result of "extreme heat" (ie something like a fire that burned down a building) so I'm guessing it's pretty difficult if not impossible to do with a torch but not sure. 

Blue on stainless is around 500+C and has no effect at all. We anneal it at over 1100C and weld at over 1500C, the normal service temp for 316 is  around 870C. The only hassle with heat tinting is it's too slow for us to do it. The color charts and temps are easy to find, search for stainless steel heat tint color charts.

eli poss · · Durango, Co · Joined May 2014 · Points: 523
Jim Titt wrote:

Blue on stainless is around 500+C and has no effect at all. We anneal it at over 1100C and weld at over 1500C, the normal service temp for 316 is  around 870C. The only hassle with heat tinting is it's too slow for us to do it. The color charts and temps are easy to find, search for stainless steel heat tint color charts.

Interesting. When I worked on a zipline, they told us that when the cables (aircraft grade steel) were exposed to extreme heat they would turn blue and they would need to be retired. Now that I think about it, I think they may have been galvanized steel, not stainless, if that makes any difference.
Bobby Hutton · · Gold Country CA · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 839

Thank you Jim,
I found a number of tutorials on different ways to achieve the heat tinting, and some articles on HAZ but everything they were discussing was not life supporting so thank you for the confirmation that I am not in danger off damaging the bolt. This will give me something to play around with until the snow melts like the OP. 

Jikimika Dinglehoffer · · Lander, Wy · Joined Apr 2011 · Points: 746

Some steels become re-tempered and embrittled at an astonishingly low temperature.
Stainless steel supposedly has a high embrittlement temperature.

Bolts and hangers described as carbon steel, galvanized, or zinc plated are going to be very vulnerable to this kind of torching.

if you're using carbon steel (which you shouldn't really do for any outdoor climbing application) DON'T torch your steel.

"One-step embrittlement usually occurs in carbon steel at temperatures between 230 °C (446 °F) and 290 °C (554 °F), and was historically referred to as "500 degree [Fahrenheit] embrittlement."
wiki/Tempering_(metallurgy)

I had to look into this to decide what type of hardware was useable after a structure fire. The answer: not much! 

Chris Vinson · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2009 · Points: 0

We leave them in a tumbler a couple days longer and it dulls them down significantly.  No heat treating, smoother edges etc..  just leave a note in the comments and we'll do it at no extra charge.

Bobby Hutton · · Gold Country CA · Joined Aug 2013 · Points: 839
Chris Vinson wrote: We leave them in a tumbler a couple days longer and it dulls them down significantly.  No heat treating, smoother edges etc..  just leave a note in the comments and we'll do it at no extra charge.

Very cool. Does Climb tech offer a bulk discount on those hangers? 

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

Fixed Hardware: Bolts & Anchors
Post a Reply to "Best paint for SS hangers/ anchors?"

Log In to Reply