How to Remove Spray Paint From Brass

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Metal putty knifes may leave scratches in the underlying brass.
Metal putty knifes may leave scratches in the underlying brass. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Spray painting generates an attractive finish, free from unsightly roller marks and brushstrokes. Unfortunately, this application technique also leads to over-spray stains on adjacent surfaces. Over-aggressive removal techniques can scar sensitive surfaces, such as wood and fiberglass. Fortunately, if you need to remove spray paint from brass, you're in luck, as brass allows for relatively aggressive removal techniques. Choose the proper tools and employ them in the correct manner, or you may end up with unforeseen consequences.

Things You'll Need

  • Plastic putty knife
  • Drop cloths
  • Paint-stripping solvent
  • 2- to 3-inch natural-bristled paintbrush
  • 80-grit sandpaper
  • Rags
  • Sponge
  • Dish soap
  • Towels
  • Respirator

Scrape as much spray paint from the brass as possible, using a plastic putty knife.

Apply paint-stripping solvent to remaining spray paint on the brass, using your natural-bristled brush. Allow five minutes for the solvent to break down the spray paint adhesives.

Remove the remaining loosened spray paint, using 80-grit sandpaper. Use dry rags to clean excess solvent.

Use sponge to wash the brass with dish soap. Rinse the brass with wet rags and dry it with towels.

Tips & Warnings

  • Wear a respirator if your work area is not ventilated.
  • Metal putty knifes may leave scratches in the underlying brass. Be sure to use a plastic scraper.
  • Don't apply solvent to brass using a synthetic brush, as stripping solvents will ruin synthetic bristles.
  • Never smoke cigarettes while using flammable paint solvents.

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