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Deb in MN 05-08-2006 11:48 AM

Today, I painted the stove-top of our Scamp. it was pitted and rusty. I sanded it, etc.

Went to the hardware store for paint. I had in mind to buy tractor paint- that stuff dries very very shiney, and I thought- if they use it on tractors, it will be fine for a stove top. And I can get it in Ford Blue- which would have matched my color theme.

Ah well- the "helpful" salesman asks may I help you? I tell him what I am looking for and he says- OH if you're going to do a STOVE top-- maybe you should use THIS paint in a spray can- it's for HIGH temperatures! I thought hmmmmm perhaps the man is right... and the paint comes in silver too- I thought okay I'll take his recommendation.

I just painted the stove top. I look on the can to see how long I have to wait in between coats, etc.

I see some words that TICKED ME OFF. "IMPORTANT! must be CURED after painting or paint may rub off when handled!! Turn on engine and run blah blah or cure item in oven at 650 degrees for an hour!"

I want to go SLAP that salesman. Didn't EVEN have a CLUE to what he was recommending to me. I WOULD have been JUST FINE with the tractor paint. This is the same store in which I had asked for Penetrol for rust inhibiting and another salesman said he never hear d of it and they didn't carry that, yet I FOUND it myself on their shelves in a different part of the store.

I can't turn up a home stove that high for an hour. I am going to try it at 500. I have two stoves- one in the basement that can handle this.... here goes nothing.

Just goes to show you- FOLLOW YOUR own instincts, READ labels, etc.

pjanits 05-08-2006 02:31 PM

Hardware store ain't what they used to be.

You gotta find an old hardware store and find the oldest guy in there if you want the straight dope on things.

Brian B-P 05-08-2006 06:37 PM

In defense of the misguided hardware guy, I think he had the right idea - high-heat paint. The problem is that he recommended paint intended for engine blocks, which isn't the right application. Barbeque paint isn't likely right, either, because it is usually a flat finish. High-gloss, high-heat, no cure required... the closest I found in a one-minute search is Rustoleum High Heat, but it seems to be satin finish.

I've seen some pretty tough enamel paint go brown in a stovetop application (my home kitchen range, converted from 1970's vintage Harvest Gold to white), but I'll admit that it wasn't tractor paint.

Suz 05-08-2006 07:51 PM

Now you know, Deb, how I learned so much. Just look on this as a learning experience -- of which I have had many.

Loren G. Hedahl 05-09-2006 04:10 PM

If anyone ever figures out what kind of paint actually works and will hold up on a camper cook-top, please let me know. I've tried just about everything, I think -- hign temp manifold paint, engine paint, barbecue paint, appliance paint. None of it would last more than an outing or two. I guess I haven't tried 'tractor paint'.

The best I found was to cover the stove top in foil, fitting it around all the little bumps in the sheet metal and cutting it out for the burners to poke through. This was only marginally satisfactory.

Finally I found a reasonably priced stainless steel marine stove. It was worth every penny. In my search I found one that was a basket case for $25.00 that I could have transferred the burners and controls from my camper stove into, but decided to go first class and get a "Force 10" that was almost new. The price? Well, if you need to ask, then you obviously can't afford it.

But to us it was a bargain, because we are not restaurant type people. We can be out for a month and perhaps eat out once. All the rest of our meals are prepared in the Scamp galley. I know that very few travelers do that, but we do, and that's why having a top quality stainless steel range is worth it to us.

Brian B-P 05-09-2006 05:37 PM

As I recall, whatever I ended up using on that home kitchen range top worked out relatively well, but that was 18 years ago so I don't remember what it was. Perhaps the propane stove burners are harder on the paint than the electric elements, as well.

Christi V, how is that powder coating working out?

Donna D. 05-09-2006 08:47 PM

Yeah Christi, tell us how the Powdercoating worked. I'm thinking it should work well. I've seen it used on vehicle exhaust systems, including the manifolds which get EXTREMELY hot and there's no color change, flaking, etc. About the only thing you'd perhaps need to be careful of is scratching the surface with a pot, etc. Even procelain scratches if a person isn't careful (asking me how I know ).

shirley munson 05-09-2006 09:56 PM

The problem is that the old stove top has to be really prepped perfectly before powdercoating or plating because all pits etc. show a lot. I agree that stainless steel is the easiest and cheapest route. Paint is a waste of time.

KevinDR 05-09-2006 10:48 PM

The condition of that range top sounds like mine was. Mine was so badly pitted and rusted that I think some of the firepits at some public campgrounds looked cleaner. My choice was pay $250 for a new range, or pay $100 to get it re-chromed. I found a chroming company, payed them $100, and two weeks later, picked up the piece. There are still quite a number of pits in the burner wells, but they are shiny and I shouldn't have any heat problems I hope. I went with shiney chrome. Probably should have used satin chroming and the pits would blend in. I recommend re-chroming.

Raymond Brodeur 05-10-2006 05:47 AM


I recommend re-chroming.
I agree with Kevin.
When I bought my Boler, stove top looked very bad.
I first paint it with white high temp paint. It was nice when new .
But after a few weeks of use, the color changed and looked dirty. I got it re-chromed, and now it remains clean and shiny.

Brian B-P 05-10-2006 12:49 PM

Great photos, Raymond. I notice that while your 1977 has a three-burner stove, my 1979 has a 4-burner. Mine's a Brown Stove Works unit, which seems to have a brushed chrome finish on the top; is yours a Brown too, and is that a brushed finish?

Kevin, I was concerned that re-chroming would cost more than I would be willing to pay, and $100 certainly isn't trivial, but it's worth considering. Did you need to do any preparation of the piece (such as rust removal), or was it all done by the shop? For those of us in the Edmonton area, can you share the name of the company?

Raymond Brodeur 05-10-2006 08:34 PM


... Mine's a Brown Stove Works unit, which seems to have a brushed chrome finish on the top; is yours a Brown too, and is that a brushed finish?
Hi Brian,
From the documentation I received from Chester, 3 years ago, (when I bought, I had no documentation), stove seems to be from Elixir Industries, wich is no longer in that business.
I don't know what was the original finish. The one I choosed for re-chroming is brushed. It cost me more than 100$CAN, but I think it worths it.

KevinDR 05-10-2006 10:20 PM


I used Supreme Plating in Edmonton. I was lazy and didn't shop around either. There are piles of them in town. I did no prepping other than take any and all things extra bits off, including the aluminum face plate of course. And I did spend 15 minutes grinding the major rust off. As for price, well, I did it in the middle of winter, possibly business was slow for them. I am sure most places like that pull a number out of their hat for what they want to charge, so look pathetic when you go in. $96 for the main top piece to be precise. I got the other chrome side pieces done for an additional $40 dollars. By all means shop around, and yes, in hindsight, I'd pick the brushed finish as apposed to shiny chrome.

I'd say the chrome plating shops charge depending upon the season, how busy they are, what else they can throw into the vat with yours, etc. If I had worked hard I probably could have gotten it for cheaper.

Donna D. 05-11-2006 08:18 AM

All you folks in Canada can get chroming done a LOT cheaper than those of us in the U.S. The EPA has forced about 70% of all chromers out of business on this side of the border. Those that are left and changing big $$$. It's gotten so bad here in the Pacific Northwest there are actual pickup and delivery points for stuff going into Canada to be chromed. It's being organized by hot rod groups. For instance I know of a truck that leaves the Vancouver, WA area twice a month. I need a bumper done, so it's going to Canada!

Brian B-P 05-11-2006 12:27 PM

Thanks for the information, Raymond and Kevin.

For my Brown Stove, the top pulls up at the front, hinges on pins near the back, and just lifts out - no real disassembly required, except to remove the pins of the spring clips near the front, so preparation would be easy.

I'll post an update if I get organized and get something done with my stovetop panel.

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