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Q & A: How Do You Make New Hardware Look Old?


How Do You Make New Hardware Look Old?



I’m missing some hardware on an old piece of furniture. I found some replacements, but they’re way too shiny and new-looking. What do I do?


If your new hardware is solid brass, solid steel,or plated with zinc, you’re in luck.There’s an easily applied chemical called Brass Ager ($3.75 for 8 oz.) that will darken your metal to look like old, patinated hardware. Traditional chemicals such as ammonia and gun-bluing don’t work on all three of these metals.

Brass Ager works in minutes and can be used over and over again. Submerge your hardware in Brass Ager and remove it when it reaches the color you want. Polish the hardware with a white cotton cloth to add luster.

Brass Ager won’t work on brassplated hardware.How do you tell what’s what? A magnet will stick to brassplated hardware,but not to solid brass. If the hardware is coated with lacquer, remove the lacquer with paint remover before using Brass Ager.


Note: Product availability and prices are subject to change.

Phyllis Kennedy Hardware,, 800-621-1245, Brass Ager, #M-3, 8 oz.; $3.75, plus shipping.

This story originally appeared in American Woodworker April 2002, issue #93.

April 2002, issue #93

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