Many of our custom projects involve outdoor pieces that require a perfect balance of durability and design. We often decide to use Cor-Ten, also known as weathering steel, because it is both long-lasting and visually distinct. Corten looks like ordinary steel until it goes through a 'weathering' stage where it develops a beautiful rust-colored patina that also serves as a protective outer layer for the material.
Unlike other steels that will eventually become completely corroded by rust if left to the elements, Cor-Ten was developed to allow only an outer layer of rust to form which acts as a natural protective coating for the steel beneath. In order to achieve this outer layer, Cor-Ten must be conditioned by being placed in an alternating wet and dry environment for the protective layer of stable rust to fully develop. This process takes between 3-9 months depending on weather and positioning.
Southern California has the perfect weather conditions for Cor-Ten - mostly hot and dry with occasional rainy days- making it a natural choice for our outdoor projects that require a more natural yet textured aesthetic.
Plus, Cor-ten doesn't require any chemical treatments (before or after weathering), which is a big bonus for us since we always try to keep our process as free as possible from harsh or synthetic materials. Talk to us about making your Cor-Ten dreams come true!