Wednesday, October 23, 2013

What Is A Wrought Iron Rod

Wrought iron rods are used for interior and exterior decoration.

Wrought iron rods are often used for decorative purposes such as curtain rods, railings, gates and fireplace features. Their solid construction combined with various patterns, lengths, widths and styles make the features suited for most home designs, both exterior and interior. The material itself is an alloy, a mixture of iron and low amounts of carbon. Does this Spark an idea?


Wrought iron bars are manufactured in steel mills and other ironworks. They are made of worked, or wrought, iron and glass-like impurities called slag. Before the development of industrial machines and equipment, blacksmiths hammered iron. This hammering process was called "working" the iron. As a blacksmith worked the iron, its impurities helped make the metal malleable. The slag also provides wrought iron with a grain-like appearance that has been likened to wood. The metal's ability to be worked into decorative shapes while maintaining an aesthetically pleasing surface has allowed it to become a sought after decorative material.


Wrought iron rods are found as solo items used for towel racks and fireplace tools. They are also used in groups where they form baker's racks, railings, gates, balusters, banisters and art pieces. Rods are joined together using rivets to create elaborate gates and enclosures featuring scroll-work or geometric patterns. The malleable rods are also welded into designs and shapes. Because wrought iron is not likely to break or weather, the pieces can last for hundreds of years.


Wrought iron rods and wrought iron pieces are often re-purposed. Former gates are reconfigured as the backs of benches or as bedroom headboards. Iron rods are welded into decorative garden figures and posts. Metal artists and refurbishers have found various patinas that, once painted onto wrought iron rods, provide the aged metal with a modern look and contemporary style. Even after hundreds of years the metal is capable of being reshaped and reworked when gone over with a welder and blowtorch.


Original wrought iron work, from centuries ago and from the early 1900s, was worked by hand from real iron. Newer metal pieces are called wrought iron because they have a similar appearance to the original works but their quality and construction materials are different from earlier pieces. Mild steel is used for decorative metal work and is mistakenly referred to as wrought iron. Metal that has been electrically welded or pieced together with other materials is also referred to as wrought iron but these pieces should not be confused with actual historic wrought iron.

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