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Pay close attention to what the door knocker is made of. Some manufacturers get away with making low quality zinc or pot metal castings look good for a short time using plating techniques. The problem with these is the good looks do not last. Soon the plating is chipping and pealing away and corrosion is taking over. What type of mounting is needed? Most door knockers employ either through the door mounting or surface mounting. Through the door mounting involves drilling holes through the door. The mounting hardware passes through these holes and attaches to the door knocker on the outside. On the inside decorative nuts are used to secure the door knocker to the door. Surface mounting uses screws to attach the door knocker to the door.
The metal is actually an alloy (two or more metals mixed together); usually containing 85-99% tin and the rest copper. Lower-grade pewter has a bluish color because lead is also added. Although there is little practical use for the metal today its still a popular material for decorative objects because it is easy to produce while retaining an elegant texture.Copper is renowned for its ability to withstand the natural elements; it is the only material that doesnt rust. Instead it oxidizes - which means it forms a unique green cover when exposed to oxygen (think of the statue of liberty). Besides aging gracefully copper doesnt physically deteriorate unlike other metals. The oxidation layer makes the metal stronger which reduces the need to replace any door knockers made out of copper.
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If lacquered or plated the engraving process can cut through and expose the base metal below. An engraved door knocker should be engraved before the plating or lacquering process. A door knocker makes a wonderful gift or is a great addition to your own home. Careful shopping and little research will go a long way in getting the best value. Are you about to replace an older doorknocker with a new one? Perhaps you are looking for a different style or finish. In any case shopping for a door knocker can be a frustrating task. There is not only the choice of style and finish you must match or cover the impressions and holes left from the previous one.