Can you paint Hammerite on wood?

by Sam Wood | Last Updated: 27/10/2020

If you have a tin of leftover Hammerite on the shelf or maybe just want a really good way to protect some wood. You may well have wondered if you can use Hammerite on wood. Well fear not, we have done the experimentation and testing for you. Read on to find out can Hammerite be used on wood?

The experiment

So we have decided to go scientific on this one, lab coats out, safety glasses on, time to get nerdy. We have got four different types of wood, pine, plywood, regular MDF and Green MDF (moisture resistant). We then have two pieces of each type of wood, so eight different pieces of wood in total.

the wood pieces to be painted

the wood pieces to be painted

We have then gone ever further and divided these pieces in half with some masking tape. One half will be painted with some red Hammerite and the other half with a red interior and exterior wood gloss. (Leyland trade).

The reason we have two pieces of each type of wood is that we will prime and undercoat one set and paint straight onto the raw wood with the other. So we will have four pieces of wood primed, undercoated then painted half Hammerite and half wood paint. Then we will have another four pieces just painted half Hammerite and half wood paint.

Labelled up and ready to go

Labelled up and ready to go

We will be testing how well the paint adheres to the wood, how good the coverage is and also the drying time. But we aren’t finished once the pieces are painted. We then intend to leave the wood pieces outside and compare how well all the finishes last when exposed to the elements. After all, if you are planning on painting wood with Hammerite, you intend for it to last.

How does Hammerite paint onto wood?

Painting

Painting the wood red

Painting the wood red

The Hammerite paints straight onto wood really easily. it felt a little thicker than the wood paint, but overall there wasn’t much between the two paints. It seemed to paint onto raw wood and onto undercoat equally well, so no real difference here yet.

Coverage

The Hammerite covered really well on both the undercoated paint and the raw wood. In fact, I would go as far as to say that it actually covered even better than the specialist wood paint.

Drying

One thing to bear in mind is that Hammerite is an oil-based paint, so it will take a while to dry. This, however, also applies to most wood paints as they tend to be oil-based too. Our paints took around 24 hours to be touch dry! The Hammerite and the wood paint seemed to take pretty much the same amount of time to dry.

all the pieces painted

all the pieces painted

Scratch Test

Before moving our painted pieces outdoor to test their weather durability we decided to test the scratch resistance to see how well the paint has adhered to the wood.

Pine

Pine Primed scratch test

Pine Primed scratch test

So above and below we have the two pieces of pine wood. The top piece was primed the bottom was not. We scratched the wood with a piece of rough timber. We only ran the rough timber over once, in the middle where the line of green tape is. In both circumstances, you can see that the Hammerite performed better than the wood paint! There is not a mark in the Hammerite but there are scratches in the gloss, particularly on the non primed piece.

Pine scratch test

Pine scratch test

Green MDF

Green MDF Primed scratch test

Green MDF Primed scratch test

Again the same result as the pine, I think t a trend might be appearing here! An interesting thing to note here is how poorly the gloss wood paint adhered to the unprimed green MDF. It scuffed off really easily, I wonder if this is down to the moisture-resistant properties of this type of wood.

Green MDF scratch test

Green MDF scratch test

Plywood

Plywood Primed scratch test

Plywood Primed scratch test

Again the Hammerite performed better in our scratch test, although it was much closer here. Both paints have adhered well to both primed and raw plywood. The Hammerite is however providing a much tougher finish time after time.

Plywood scratch test

Plywood scratch test

Brown MDF

Brown MDF Primed scratch test

Brown MDF Primed scratch test

The Brown MDF performed better than the green but you can still sell adherence issues with the gloss, particularly on the non primed surface,

Brown MDF scratch test

Brown MDF scratch test

Well, I think we have already answered the question: can you paint Hammerite on wood? Yes! You definitely can, in fact, it seems to where better to both primed and raw wood than specialist wood paint.

For the next stage in the test, we want to test the durability of these paints. So we have moved the pieces outside, into an English winter, keep checking back for progress updates!

The wood outside for durability test

The wood outside for durability test

6 Month Update!

So our test pieces have been sat outside in the snow, hail, rain… all winter long. I took some quick snaps of all the different test pieces to see how they are faring before moving them back outside to continue the test!

Plywood

hammerite on plywood 6 months primer

Hammerite on plywood 6 months with primer

Above is the primed piece of plywood. One thing that will be obvious straight away and actually continues through all the test pieces is the colour change in the gloss. Before going outside the two paints were a good colour match, but as you can see, the gloss has gone very orange. Another thing to note is the dark marks on the gloss side. This is not dirt but is actually in the paint and won’t come off. Maybe some form of mould that has gotten into the paint? A win for Hammerite here!

hammerite on plywood no primer 6 months

Hammerite on plywood no primer 6 months

Now we have the unprimed plywood. You can see the difference the priming has made to the vividness of the red here. Again on the gloss, we have dark marks within the paint. But we do have a problem with the Hammerite here where it has bubbled up in the bottom corner. This time a win for the gloss I think.

Pine

hammerite on pine 6 months primer

Hammerite on pine 6 months with primer

This is the primed pine piece of test wood. Again there is the discolouration in the gloss but apart from that not much to report, both sides have held up well. (the dark marks at the bottom of the Hammerite side are just stubborn dirt!)

hammerite on pine no primer 6 months

Hammerite on pine no primer 6 months

This is the unprimed piece and the result is clear, the Hammerite side looks good but look closely at the gloss side and you can see a huge blister where the paint is coming away from the wood. A clear win for Hammerite again!

Green MDF

Hammerite on green mdf 6 months primer

Hammerite on green mdf 6 months with primer

Above is the primed sheet of green (moisture resistant) MDF. Apart from the colour change, there is not a lot to report here with paints looking good so far.

 Now we have the unprimed green MDF. If you remember in the scratch test the gloss did poorly here and that has shown up in the 6-month update. Another huge blister that when knocked would peel straight off. The Hammerite side again looks fine. The dark marks are bits of dirt I couldn’t brush off easily. I don’t want to try and scrub it aggressively as I feel that could affect the outcome of the test.

Brown MDF

hammerite on brown mdf 6 months primer

Hammerite on brown mdf 6 months with primer

So this is the regular old MDF with primer. The gloss has again blistered up at the top, whereas the Hammerite looks fine.

hammerite on brown mdf no primer 6 months

Hammerite on brown mdf no primer 6 months

Again blistering on the gloss side but nothing on the Hammerite.

So can you paint Hammerite on wood?

So there we have it, the 6-month results are in and Hammerite is clearly in the lead. Not only can you paint Hammerite on wood it looks like great outdoor wood paint. Check back in another 6 months for the year 1 test update!

Metal Paint
Hammerite Metal Paint
£8.95
  • Smooth glossy finish for a flawless high sheen
  • Up to 8 years rust protection
  • A 3 in 1 formulation gives beautiful protection for metal
  • Primer, undercoat and topcoat in one
  • Paint directly onto rust
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06/16/2021 03:52 pm GMT

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Wood by name, wood by nature. I am a fully qualified, time-served, award-winning joiner with an NVQ Level 3 in Carpentry and Joinery as well as an HNC in Construction. Beyond my joinery qualifications, I have also earned a degree in building surveying. I believe these qualifications make me perfectly positioned to provide expert advice on many different areas of DIY as well as share all of the tips I have picked up in over a decade working on building sites!