Back in October ’09 the “travel wall” idea was originally formulated over a lovely cocktail (or three) at The Zetter. Since then the idea has been discussed and further explored and various elements of the idea have been analysed and contemplated… Some of them have been developed and some initially exciting prospects have been discarded after seeing them in the cold light of day… but last week I did an experiment to see if one of the more significant concepts – the magnetic wall – would actually work as the “base” for the entire project.
Well I hope these images show that the experiment was a resounding success and probably the most impressive and flexible solution (but neither the cheapest or quickest to implement – but great things rarely are!) for any sort of application of this sort.
Now I decided not to go for my designated target wall in the first instance – it being very prominent (in the hall) and more importantly quite large, so I chickened out and chose a smaller wall in the kitchen to try things out.
So, some of the findings worth sharing: Well perhaps the main one is that in my experience you need four even coats of the magnetic primer for a suitable level of magnetism. I would also give the surface a light sanding with fine sandpaper or a Scotch Brite before covering with two (darker colours) or three (white/lighter colours) coats of your chosen top colour.
Now I used a brush for the primer, brushing in alternate directions for each coat and then a roller for the top coats and that all worked beautifully and I am very pleased with the result. But let me warn you now – that magnetic primer is very messy and very smelly stuff! So make sure you have drop cloths everywhere and all the windows open wide…
In hindsight, doing this on one of the colder days of the British winter wasn’t one of the cleverest ideas I’ve ever had!
Finally, choosing the right magnets is important – and clearly the best choice by a country mile are rare earth magnets, as they will give the best performance – and generally look the business! I bought mine from eMagnetsUK and can really recommend them for speedy delivery and product range.
I particularly like these – perfect for tying coloured silk string to.
So, next on my list will be to wait until the weather improves before attacking the proper wall – and trialing this neat little gizmo to see if the 21st century polaroid has a place in my hipstamatic, or rather FxCamera existence!