Our April Contest Winner Weighs 2000 Pounds!

Featured Project This Month

Now don’t get us wrong by the looks of this featured project. Every project we review doesn’t resemble the magnitude of this one, but aren’t these doors simply beautiful? This project is a work of restoration art.

The City of Chicago is preserving the structure of this pretty and important Department of Water Management building located at 2250 West Eastwood in Lincoln Square.

One of the famous quotes of our nation’s third President, Thomas Jefferson are inscribed in bronze above a stunning pair of doors and transoms. Recently restored to their original beauty, this grand representation of all that is glorious in architecture and history, these beauties are not securing a museum, federal building or even a library.

The Water Pumping Station in Chicago’s Lincoln Square neighborhood is the proud home of this testament to all that is good in our country and its relationship with the world. On a pumping station.

The company named f 2 Industries of Sycamore, Illinois is an Architectural and Ornamental Metalworks firm that was commissioned to perform the restoration work on the Lincoln Square Water Pumping Station. Lucio of f 2 comments on the project:

“We were charged with the restoration of the two monumental doors and transom at the Jefferson Pumping Station, in Chicago, IL. Each door weighed over 2,000 pounds! All paint covered brass was removed and each of the brass plates, florets, handles, and hinges were polished. They then received three coats of Permalac®. Everything worked perfectly and the project stakeholders couldn’t be happier.”

We’re proud to have been chosen as the preferred coating. We’re also proud to see f2 Industries participating in our contest!

Above is another view of the front façade of this elegant public building. One would think that a building façade such as this might lend itself to a manor house, a library, government court building, or possibly a town hall of some minor metropolis. It’s a pumping station in the Roger’s Park neighborhood of Chicago, moving filtered water from Lake Michigan and pressurizing it to make its way to faucets in residences and businesses in the local area.

But appearances are deceiving: This building is no relic of the past. Though now nearly 90 years old, the pumping station remains a real workhouse for the Department of Water Management and is vital to Chicagoans’ quality of life.

In fact, the pumping station, 2250 W. Eastwood Ave., plays such an important role in delivering water to homes across the North Side, the city spent $4 million on a 10,000-square-foot addition to the building in 2010 and, according to information shared by Ald. Ameya Pawar (47th), is undertaking further capital improvements this year to shore up the structure.

Designed by Argyle Robinson, who was the city’s official architect between 1926 and 1929, the pumping station became operational in August 1928 and immediately made an impression on residents for all the wrong reasons.

One can tell the amazing relief of this grand station, obviously ornately detailed for such an “average” purpose as a water pumping station.

Build in 1928, the pumping station made an impact of the worst kind to local residents, as water is pumped to homes and businesses was labeled as “unfit to drink or bathe.” Apparently, something was amiss at the onset, which was quickly resolved, and is still in operation today.

As regular users and readers of our blog know, Permalac is the chosen favorite of sculptors, preservation and restoration specialists, and even governments for their projects. As taken from our website:

On bare surfaces, Permalac behaves as both a sealer (in case you decide to paint over it), or as a top coat protecting it from UV, salt air, and other environmental corrosives. On metals, Permalac is also flexible. This means that Permalac stays with the metal and does not separate when the metal is bent.

It’s no wonder why Permalac is selected for so many projects here in the US and internationally because of its ease of use, protective properties and quick drying time. No other product on the market provides the flexibility and durability, with to the touch drying time of less than an hour.

One More Reminder

Hey, all you hobbyists, sculptors, designers, restoration-ers, metalworkers, have you entered your project lately? Shared your project to win? We’d Love to Hear From You. Every project entry gives you a chance to win a $25 Visa Gift Card. Tell us a little about the project, send a few images, and who knows? You just might be this month’s winner. Enter as many projects as you like.

Our panel of judges will select the winning project and award the prize. Don’t delay. Snap an image, fill out the short form and let’s see how yours stacks up. If you are the fortunate winner, we’ll mail that gift card right to your door.

Remember, your project doesn’t have to be large and complex. It can be anything from an art project or something more commercial like the one above. As long as your project used Permalac, it’s more than fit for submission. Just go to our project contact form page on our site and enter to win a $25 Visa Gift Card for showing off your project. Submit your entry here.

The Second-Best Way to Avoid That Junk Yard Look

Bare metal car

If you’ve ever watched American Pickers on television, or you’ve driven through small, slow, southern towns, you know to what I am referring. The best way to avoid that junkyard look is to remove all of the rusted vehicles and other debris from the front porch and yard.

The second-best and I must admit the PREFERRED way is to not let those old vehicles disintegrate into a pile of rust is to coat them in Permalac. Of course, you would have to strip them down and grind them down to bare metal. But hey, “yard art” is much preferred to that junkyard look. Mike and Frank of Antiques Archaeology and the History Channel would be amazed.

All joking aside, using Permalac on mild steel, or brushed stainless steel for that matter is a great way to prevent oxidation and degradation. It’s amazing to discover that we’ve had this question come up (no, not how to avoid the junkyard look) about how to protect bare metal on several occasions over the past few years. Each time, it inspired words to paper and we posted our thoughts on our blog. Like in October 2016, when Pete of Oakland California sent us this article on Pembleton Motor Company’s Aluminum Kit Car protection.

Pembleton Motor Company

“All of the body was handmade out of aluminum cut from a sheet from patterns. This includes flooring, bulkheads, and front wings. I decided to leave the body bright so used Permalac Matte to protect these surfaces.”

What, This Old Thing?

Or, when Mark in Minnesota sent us a picture of his barn find (post blood, sweat, and tears), his 1949 Chevy pickup. I don’t think anyone would mind having this sitting in their front yard, do you?

1949 Chevy truck

“After 30 years in the barn, Marks 1949 Chevy 3100 truck needed some love and a lot of time to get back on the road. With that much time in, Mark wanted a truly unique vehicle, so he went bare metal. Mark used Permalac because it maintains the natural look of the steel while providing long-lasting protection.”

Bare Metal and Color Combinations?

Curiosity may have killed the cat, but her bowl is still looking good. The metal bowls seemed like a great science experiment by applying a bit of color to them and then finding out how they would perform. The lab tested out my curious questions from the field and found out some surprising new truths.

Bronze Bowl

“Permalac’s effectiveness as a direct to metal clear is well established. Recently we have been getting more interest from our customers who want Permalac’s adhesion and corrosion resistance with color. I wanted to see how effective Permalac could be when carrying color and would it cover color. These aluminum snack bowls were one of the tests I came up with. I decided to go for this enamel look. I sprayed on a layer of the base color, let it set up for a few minutes, and then airbrushed on the secondary colors. Then three coats of Satin/Gloss Permalac and it was finished”.

The Bronze Age Continues

The blog holds story after story about the use of Permalac on sculptures, everything from Egyptian Sacred Staircases to the Governor of Ohio’s chandelier, and just about everything in between. Because we’re a global supplier, we’re used on a great many projects both here in the US, and abroad. Like this one,

Bronze, Outdoor

“A recent installation was 27 feet tall and weighed over 6000 pounds. Typically, he works in fabricated bronze. In some cases, it can be shaped cold with presses and rollers, but more often requires heating to 1600oF. John uses Permalac from Peacock labs to protect the delicate patinas and special surface treatments with which he finishes his work. John says Permalac goes on a little thicker than other products he used previously. He added, “So far it seems to provide better protection against UV and other environmental challenges.”

So, as you can see we’re quite proud of some of the projects our clients and customers use Permalac and all of its various formulations protect. Bare metal, patina affected metals, sculptures, statues, old pickup trucks, jewelry and even a bullet. Check our blog for an interesting story about a Marine Sniper and his H.O.G. Tooth.

If you’ve got a project you think might make a great story of what Permalac has helped you with, we’d love to hear all about it. Every month our “panel of judges” selects a noteworthy project submission, to share on our blog and email, and we’ll send the winner a Visa gift card! Click the button below if you completed a project using Permalac and would like to share it.


How is Permalac Like a Bullet?

How is Permalac like a bullet?

How is Permalac like a bullet, a term often-used term in pop culture these days? There’s an Elton John song “I feel like a bullet (in John Ford’s Gun), Stefanie Heinzmann, a vocal artist from Switzerland recorded a song “Like a Bullet” in 2008. Glitz performed their song Livin’ Like a Bullet’, the Bullet Train (on Vimeo), and there is even a type of blogging called “Bullet Blogging.” Well, I’d like to share an interesting story about a particular bullet, and how Peacock Labs and Permalac are involved.

A short while back we received an email from a website visitor asking for a recommendation. The writer explained the need for a product to protect a valued treasure; a bullet.
For the sake of discussion, let’s call this writer Dave, who is a Viet Nam Veteran of the Marine Corps Sniper Unit. Upon the completion of Sniper School (a 10-week program), every graduate is presented with a personalized “keepsake.”

H.O.G. Tooth photoThe H.O.G. Tooth (more on this in a moment) he received is a precious piece of his personal history that he would like to preserve. He was inquiring about how to coat the piece with something that could protect its patina, and not be harmful to humans if held in close contact with a person’s skin. Here is an excerpt from our digital conversation that helps explain:

It’s worn as a necklace, so it makes contact with skin much of the time…I’m looking for a way to keep it ‘mirror bright’. I had used Brasso to return the shine when my H.O.G. tooth tarnished, but as you can imagine, I’d be forever grateful for a 1-time treatment that would keep this new one ‘bright’…..(I’m 66 now, so it will only need to keep the shine for about the next 30 years or so…..hahahaha)

Dave has had a duplicate H.O.G. Tooth made, and as he explains, he’d like to keep it looking “mirror Bright” as the original has become permanently tarnished from wear since 1967.
The acronym of H.O.G. stands for Hunter of Gunmen. As Dave puts it:

I earned my “H.O.G. Tooth”. This is a 7.62mm NATO Bullet, on a Paracord Necklace. It serves 2 purposes: First, as I have the bullet with my name on it, no other can use it against me. Second, the acronym of H.O.G. is Hunter of Gunmen; (a Sniper’s most valuable role in the Combat Theater, as a H.O.G., it’s the Sniper’s job to protect friendly forces from any threat of enemy gunmen.) I still have my original bullet. It has tarnished over the years, and now, I’ve decided to shelf the original, and wear a replacement. It’s still a 7.62mm, so it will serve as well.

Our brave Vet Dave is disabled, and lives on a meager income. He was advised by someone somewhere that for $225, he could have his replacement bullet preserved.

I live on one check a month from the V.A., and I REALLY can’t afford to spend $225 bucks to make my bullet shiny…… Soooooo – can you direct me to a dealer, who might take on this gargantuan project for less than a couple of hundred bucks?? (It’s just a bullet, not even the casing! Measures about 1-1/4 inches) Would YOU guys consider the job? I know I could trust you….you make the stuff!

Peacock Labs did better than that. We arranged for a sample bottle of Permalac shipped to him to keep his H.O.G. pendant looking new. Since Dave rides motorcycles (yes, even though he lives with shrapnel shards in his spine), we also sent along some PChrome to try on his bike parts.

We took an interest in this story for personal reasons, but it feels good to know we helped someone who placed their life before others in defense of our country and its ideals. Dave is retired now, but has enough strength to “stand long enough to salute the flag as it passes,” as he relayed to me.

We wanted to share this bit of information with you in this email. It’s not often we hear directly from individual consumers, but when queries such as these come in from time to time, I hope we all take the time to pay attention to our customers.

It is every client-facing employee’s responsibility to listen and respond to all customer commentary. Helping Dave, and others like him are much more than merely conducting business, it’s making a personal connection, and don’t we all deserve that?