If you are going to buy some garden wall art made from metal here are some points to consider before you make the purchase.
1. There are many websites that sell reasonably priced metal wall art. The designs are OK and the prices are very reasonable but the cheaper designs are not intended for outdoor use (that is why they are cheap).
2. If you want a to ensure the metal art is able to endure the elements it will need to be constructed from a material that can withstand weathering, such as stainless steel or copper. That will be expensive. Double dandies and Make a Wish are examples.
3. It is possible to use the cheaper metals outdoors however they must be regularly maintained. They will need a coat of sealant designed specifically for outdoor metals. Be aware that a little scratch to the protective layer will allow the rusting process to commence. If rust does set in the metal it must be cleaned and treated thoroughly before re-applying the sealant. Painting over rust will do nothing. Rust will spread under the painted coat.
4. If you live close to the sea the oxidisation process can happen quickly (due to the sea salts that are carried in the wind). It is advisable to purchase durable metal art (such as copper) in these harsher conditions.
5. A metal that has been galvanised and powder coated is likely to withstand the elements. However not all galvanised and powder coated treatments are the same. Be aware these process require a skilled metal worker.
6. Some artists choose to allow the oxidisation process to occur as it adds character. That is fine as long as the buyer is aware that the art may look different the following year.
7. It is possible to purchase garden art that rusts but does not corrode. This type of metal is referred to as weathering steel (also known as cor-ten). The material develops a rusted surface that protects the remainder of the steel. The structural integrity of the steel is not affected.
8. It is possible to purchase garden art made from zinc such as the floral stool (below) however do not leave zinc outside without a protective coating, otherwise it will go milky.
9. It is harder to get a quality powder coated finish on galvanised steel than it is on zinc.
10. The reflective quality of some metals (ie polished stainless steel) creates a light which is useful in dark garden corners.
For the full article please refer to garden wall art news