DIY Pro Tip: Making Brass Coasters

Simple, pure brass accessories never go out of style. In its simplest form the metal provides a solid and understated platform to work with, which makes it perfectly suited to the function of protecting your surfaces from drink-wear moisture in any setting. From the living room, to game room or even shipboard, these coasters are a useful and attractive addition to the decor.

C360-Free-Machining Brass-Rod-coasters

Coasters made from 360 Brass slices – will not cling to your glasses!

Getting Started:

  • Materials – C360 Brass Rod, approx. 4″ diameter x 1-2″ length
  • Adhesive Felt
  • File & steel wool
Step 1.     Cut 360 Brass Rod at .200″ thick for each coaster unit (A set of 4 can be made with about 1″ of Brass Rod) – Tip: We used our handy Phoenix PA-13 to cut the metal – way easier than a hacksaw!
Cut-to-size-360-brass-rodStep 2. File off the rough edges, polish sides with fine steel wool – Tip: leave the cut-finish as a slip resistor for your beverages and unique embellishement.

Step 3. From self-adhesive felt, cut circles matching size of your coasters and apply to one side. Tip: This will prevent scratches on your fine furnishings!

Now you may enjoy your beverage without the worry of watermarks on the furniture or coasters that have an annoying cling!


*This project was brought to us by our own Brad Larson, of the OnlineMetals Dallas warehouse. Cheers, Brad!


Trend To Try: DIY Galvanized Planters

Galvanized metal patio plantersNow is the time when snow is melting, temperatures are rising, and the garden looks disastrous!

Soon enough your back yard is going to be filled with food, friends, family and picture after picture to remember each event! So, why not create a lively, attractive outdoor space with the simple addition of galvanized steel planters? By resurfacing existing containers, or building your own, you’ll get this designer look at a fraction of the cost!
modern outdoor galavanized planters

Give your garden some structure and modern style with do-it-yourself galvanized steel planters.  Galvanized steel sheet is affordable, durable, and comes in all shapes and sizes. This material is also a stock item in all of OnlineMetals 6 facilities nationwide. So, you could be building your new planters in just a few days!

Starting at less than three dollars for a 12″ x 12″ sheet, it is possible to create unique designs that would cost hundreds to purchase from a retailer.  Inspiration for fresh spring designs in galvanized steel can be found at stores ranging from Pottery Barn, to Restoration Hardware and Home Depot.

Galvanized steel raised bed

Galvanized steel can also be used directly on the ground for raised bed planters.

For simple instructions on creating a raised gardening bed from a variety of sheet metal materials, check out this story on

If you give this one a try, send us a photo of your project. We love to see what our community is up to!






Email  your own project photos to us: sales(at)onlinemetals(dot)com.

Galvanized Steel Rectangle Planter

Simple, clean and modern. This rectangle planter is an easy design to apply in any outdoor setting.



Illuminating Metal Design – Style Forward Lighting

Since ancient times, when craftsmen hammered alloys into functional and beautiful forms, humans have turned to metal to fashion lasting fixtures to light our homes and public spaces.

Metal-Lamps-MaterialsWe assume that metal was once chosen for its sturdy and flame resistant qualities, to be used with burning fuels and candles. Today, it’s use continues for the sheer attractive qualities of the medium, as well as the lifetime of enjoyment the objects have to offer.

The various natures of metal types attract a range of design styles. While wrought iron may tend to be fashioned into medieval torches, newer materials such as seamless brass and copper tubing are inspiring today’s modern designs. The ability to purchase materials in prefabricated tubing makes metal an ideal design material. And, the beautiful finishes hold up to functional use in home and commercial settings.

Copper Tube and Brass Tube in Light FixtureOne design firm (that is a favorite customer of OnlineMetals) known for their fashion forward styles and use of metal materials is L&G Studio of Seattle. Of their many products that incorporate metal into its structure, their lighting collection is renowned for its subtlety and versatility.

(See more photos of lighting styles below.)

The Maru lighting collection is designed to be the “jewelry” of the space in which it resides.  With stacked beads of natural materials, including copper,  and acrylic, the pendants are available in a variety of styles to allow for a custom composition of lights.







Aura lighting from Brass and copper Tube


With the Aura Light collection, the design firm has distilled lighting to the element of function.

The simple bulb and aura (a halo formed from a brass ring) perform the task of illuminating the space with grace and clarity. The fixtures also feature brass or copper bases and are available with a 10″ or 15″ aura.

Aura-cluster-lighting-copper-brass-tubeWhen combined in varying sizes and finishes the lights create a stunningly clean arrangement suitable to nearly any space.

For information on designs and stockists, contact L&G Studios online.





Lighting Photo Gallery from Ladies and Gentleman Studio Collection


Aura lighting in darkened room. From L&G Studios Seattle


From the Aura Collection at L&G Studios Seattle


















Maru Pendant Light with copper tube and brass tube beads

Pendant from the Maru collection at L&G Studio


Local Seattle High School Robotics Team Now Champions

The Viking Robotics Team 2928 (Ballard High School, Seattle, WA) came home with the championship award, medals and a banner from the Mount Vernon District competition last week.

Viking Robotics Team Championship Robot

Viking Robotics Team Championship Robot

As a sponsor of the team and local boosters, OnlineMetals couldn’t be more proud of the hard work these kids put into their project.

The team’s robot, the mighty Odin, showed itself to be strong with a drive train perfected over several build seasons, with the addition of pneumatic gearboxes which allowed the driver to shift up or down depending on power needs, either for speed or defense.

Viking Robotics Team working on Unit with OnlineMetals materialsThe young designers ironed out bugs in the system and consistently shot the ball into the high goal (the competition’s core challenge) in the autonomous phase of the game. And with a very well designed pick up system – which was extensively prototyped – they could quickly pick up a ball from the field and race to the goals to score either in the high goal or the low goal, or pass it over the truss to one of our alliance partners.

To see the robot in action, follow this link to the competition video>>

Great job to all the students who worked diligently on this project. OnlineMetals is proud to support your success!

Team’s Total Awards

  • District Champions
  • Industrial Engineering Award
  • Safety Award
  • A student, Paul Earhart, Junior, going on to Portland Regionals for the Dean’s List Award
  • A mentor, James Craig, going on to Portland Regionals for the Woodie Flowers Award


Stainless Steel for Stylish and Durable Backsplash

Stainless Steel Harlequin Master Backsplash TileIn addition to being a stylish addition to your kitchen, backsplashes are also a functional way to protect your walls while providing an easy-to-clean low-maintenance surface, if you select the right material.

Stainless steel and copper are proven materials that are both beautiful and rugged enough for any high use area, which is why so many commercial kitchens use the metals. And now, the designs and materials are created in handy tiles that can easily be applied to any home design project.

There are no real design rules governing backsplashes. You can wrap it around the entire room to give a sense of visual continuity and help a small space seem larger. Or, place panels behind the range or sink for a highlighting effect. Whatever your ideas, dive in to designing a beautiful kitchen space with a stainless steel or copper backsplash pattern.

The tiles would be equally suited to using in entry ways, bathrooms or any space where you want to make a splash! With just a few basic tools homeowners can achieve the effect of having a whole new kitchen by adding some metal tiles to the surfaces.


Diagonal Stainless Steel Tile

All items are hemmed edges .029 satin 304 stainless material prepacked with two-sided tape and glue.







Hemmed Edge Stainless Steel Backsplash

All backsplashes come standard with a hemmed edge.








2-sided tape and glue for east installation


Wall Before









After Installation



















Stainless Diagonal Pattern



























Stainless Steel Tile





DIY – Counter Top Transformation with Copper

Copper Kitchen Counter Tops - Copper Sheet ASTM B370Homeowners Peggy and Everett S. recently revamped their kitchen with stunning new copper counter tops in a project they designed and installed themselves.  Using the OnlineMetals Copper Sheet ASTM B370 16 mil product, the couple transformed their cooking, snacking and meeting space into a sophisticated, one-of-a-kind culinary station!

The couple, ages 72 and 77, completed the project with their own labor and the help of a few friends. The happy DIY duo loved working with the PVC coated copper sheeting, and recommend having it shipped flat for this type of project, noticing that it was easy to handle with no shape memory.

One other tip… Peggy recommends cleaning the the counters with white vinegar and Hunt’s Ketchup, then spraying on a little bit of light furniture polish for a “new again” shine!

Project Photos:

Copper Kitchen Counter Tops - Copper Sheet ASTM B370






Copper Kitchen Counter Tops - Copper Sheet ASTM B370







Copper Kitchen Counter Tops - Copper Sheet ASTM B370







Copper Kitchen Counter Tops - Copper Sheet ASTM B370








Copper Kitchen Counter Tops - Copper Sheet ASTM B370


Outdoor Menu Display

Customers all over the world use our material to make great things. Sometimes they send pictures, which I share with you on our blog. Occasionally, they bring something in to our Seattle Will call to show it to us in person. (I post any pictures I take on our blog too.)
…and then there are rare, awesome situations like this one.

Seattle artist and builder Eric E. sent pictures of an outdoor menu box that he built for a local restaurant.

Eric writes “It’s mostly constructed out of 2” x 2” and 1 ½” x 1 ½” hot rolled angle steel from OLM, and the front frame was treated with a rust accelerator formula and sealed with polyurethane.”

As I read this and looked at the pictures, I realized that I’ve been to this restaurant. I’ve seen this menu box, and I remember being seriously impressed! (What, I’m a metals gal….I notice those things.)

So, anyway. Thanks to the local restaurant for being one of the cool ones that posts a menu out front. Thanks to my friend Sam for taking me there, and thanks to Eric for being our customer, for building this, and for sending us pics. Your e-mail made my day.

OLM Marketing Director

Go Kart

Every year Pioneer High School has an event called the Senior Exhibition. It’s an optional assignment that allows students to showcase the type of thing they’d like to do once they graduate.
Eric, a senior at Pioneer, wants to major in mechanical engineering, and chose to create a go-kart for this project. He’s a long time OnlineMetals customer, and a member of his local FIRST robotics team.

He kept us posted during the design phase.

…and came up with a pretty cool chassis layout:

Here’s the finished kart he built using OnlineMetals plate and tube.

Great job Eric. See you at the track!

Jeremy’s Amazing Creations…

Jeremy writes:

I am a sculptor from Raleigh, North Carolina. I use Online Metals for a number of my projects. I love all the options and the quick service. Here are a couple pieces I made from material I got from OnlineMetals. Thanks!
- Jeremy Maronpot

Here’s a link to his website:

Here are some of the amazing pieces he’s created using OnlineMetals material:

…and if you have time, we highly recommend you watch this:
Tortoise Sculpture Photo Documentary