Here you will find answers to questions that we have been asked on many occasions by a variety of customers.
1. Do you offer a printed catalog?
Our website is our most complete and up-to-date catalog. You can easily browse our full product line on this website. The website allows us to keep our product line current for the benefit of our customers. Items are added and removed frequently. Browsing items online also allows you to easily order using our shopping cart system. We will send you more of our product catalogue to your email. So please contact us for catalogue. We understand that some customers still prefer a printed catalog. Our printed catalog will be sent along with samples, if your have samples from us.
2. Do you have wholesale pricing?
All of our prices are wholesale or better. We sell to businesses through this website. We also offer Distributor Pricing for high volume buyers.
3. What is Ripplecrafts normal lead time?
We strive to complete all orders as quickly as possible. Orders are usually 30-45 days after receipt of 30% deposit or L/C.
4. What are the order minimums?
We sell to businesses only.
So produce in containers or mixed containers. As you know, quantity has a lot to do with production cost. We can offer better price with volume order.
5. What is the difference between wrought and cast metal?
Wrought is metal in the form of sheet, strip, or bar stock that is "hand-worked," or “hand-wrought,” typically on an anvil. Using the skills of a blacksmith, the metal is heated in a forge and hammered to shape. A metal smith can either forge the metal by hand over an anvil or by using a modern power hammer. Cast is metalwork produced in a foundry. At the foundry, metal ingots are melted in furnaces and the molten metal is poured into molds. Cast metalwork requires the use of a “pattern” which is usually carved by hand or machine.
6. What is the difference between wrought iron and steel?
The terms iron and steel are often used interchangeably today. So, unless it is “cast” iron you are referring to, iron and steel mean the same thing to the contemporary metal fabricator. “Wrought Iron” usually refers to the process of iron or steel being “wrought” by hand or machine and implies a degree of decoration is involved. (e.g. “I would prefer a wrought iron fence” and “ I would prefer a decorative steel fence” mean the same thing) However, “wrought iron” is also a very specific type of iron alloy that was the predominant metal used for ornamental and structural work prior to 1920s. When modern smelting processes and higher grades of “steel” became available “wrought iron” was discontinued in favor of the new alloys. Since “real” wrought iron is no longer made except in specialty mills, all ornamental metal shops use A36 Carbon Steel in their fabrication and forging operations where ironwork is required.
7.What is meant by a "machined" forging?
One of the exploding trends of the last decade is the increased availability of "machined" or manufactured forgings. These ornamental metal components are milled, stamped, pressed, or otherwise formed with machinery rather than by hand. These parts are mass produced, which makes them more economical.
8. How can I prevent rust?
Rust is the common name for oxidized (ing) ferrous (iron based) alloys. It is difficult to completely stop rust and it should be noted that unless the ferrous product has a well maintained coating system on it, rust will eventually occur. Many options are available for coating ferrous metalwork that can keep rust at bay. Choosing the right primer is essential for rust prevention, hot dip galvanizing, cold zinc galvanizing (a paint process), and zinc oxide primers on well prepared iron and steel all perform very well. All primers perform even better when they receive an equally good top coating of paint. There are many types of enamels and urethanes on the market that work well over properly primed steel. Powder coating is a popular finish and a good powder coating system will also include a primer (powder) coating.
Nonferrous metals such as aluminum and stainless steel do not rust but they do oxidize. For most common grades of aluminum and stainless, these metals will oxidize badly if not protected by a paint or powder coating even when exposed to mild weather and environmental conditions such as salt air.
9. I have an existing exterior iron railing which is rusting, what is the best way to maintain it??
If the railing is badly deteriorated or loose in any way it is best to find a qualified ornamental metal fabricator to make necessary repairs. If the railing is in sound shape then remove the rust with a wire brush, use a rust inhibitive primer or a zinc rich primer and a good quality rust inhibitive top coat, all should be available at your local hardware store. Be sure to use a good amount of paint as well as following the manufacturer＇s recommendations. A thin coat of paint will not weather as well as a heavier coating. Proper and regular maintenance is the only way to ensure that rust will not form on your iron/steel products.
10. What is the difference between brass and bronze?
Brass and bronze are both copper base alloys and for architectural applications they mean the same thing, i.e. brass cap railing is also known
through the industry as "architectural bronze CDA 385" The most commonly used alloy available for our architectural metalwork is 385 but fabricators also use silicon bronze, commercial bronze, muntz metal, monel metal, naval brass and other copper based alloys.
The important thing to recognize when using copper based alloys is that there are hundreds of copper based alloys and each one has a general
application. Knowledge and experience is essential to using the right alloy and finish for the application.
11.What is the difference between an oxidized finish, patina finish, and chemical conversion coating?
All of these terms refer to the same process for finishing metal. By oxidizing the surface of any metal, you are creating a type of patina. Most patina finishes also get an additional layer of protection such as a clear coat or wax coating. Some projects may use paints to create a faux patina such as painting cast iron brown with green or gold tone painted highlights to resemble aged bronze.
12. What is the best finish for ornamental iron?
Wherever you use iron, indoors or out, iron and steel are prone to rust unless they are properly coated, so gauge your coatings appropriately. If used outdoors near a salt air/water environment, a very substantial coating is required with perhaps hot dip galvanizing followed by epoxy primers and urethanes top coats. If the ironwork is indoors (but not by a pool), a wax coating may be sufficient but lacquers and enamels are commonly used to protect the metal for these applications.
13. What materials does Ripplecrafts work in?
Ripplecrafts products are mostly made of wrought iron, rattan, wood, ceramic and glass. They are all handmade.
14. What is the difference between Cast Iron and Wrought Iron or or other metals?
Cast iron is formed by pouring molten iron into a mold which was formed by pressing a carved pattern into casting sand. Wrought iron is also called forged iron. It is the process of taking a bar of preformed metal then heating it and working the hot metal by hand under the hammer and over an anvil and with various tools.
15. What is the difference between Brass and Bronze?
Brass and bronze are all members of the copper alloy family. There is no formal differentiation between brass and bronze, only a perception that the more yellow a copper alloy appears, it is more likely referred to as brass, and the more reddish it appears to be it is called bronze. While there are several hundred copper alloys used in industry, we generally use the following alloys in our work. Silicon Bronze, Aluminum Bronze, Muntz metal, Naval Brass, and Architectural Bronze. Of these alloys, bronze handrail or cap rail is made of architectural bronze.
16. Lots of metalwork catalogues use the term ‘wrought iron’ to describe their products? Are your products made of wrought iron?
‘Wrought iron’ is often used as a generic term for mass-produced decorative ironwork, and refers to the manufacturing process of working it into scrolls and twists, etc. The vast majority of such ironwork is actually made of mild steel, like much modern ironwork .
The material ‘wrought iron’ has very different properties from mild steel and is produced using a very different process. We can source this specialised material, which (in sheet form) is as valuable as sterling silver, from our specialist supplier. As trained and experienced blacksmiths, we have the specialist skills and techniques that are required for working in wrought iron, which is typically used for restoration work (much historical ironwork is made from wrought iron) and for customers who are keen always to use the best possible materials and skills for a given task.
17. Do you make things in cast iron?
Cast iron items are produced in a foundry by pouring molten metal into especially made moulds. This means that cast iron is most suitable for items that are produced in large quantities. We work together with a small number of foundries, who meet our needs for cast iron features that are typical of Victorian, or Victorian-style ironwork.
18. Will my ironwork go rusty?
No, it won’t. To prevent corrosion, our exterior ironwork is either galvanised (dipped in molten zinc) or primed with a zinc-rich primer before painting. We use a similar zinc-rich primer for painted interior ironwork. If you prefer a natural metal look, then we use a high quality clear lacquer that ensures a high degree of corrosion resistance. Natural beeswax is another corrosion-resistant finish that we use for interior ironwork, especially smaller, frequently handled items as it provides a lovely, tactile finish.
19. Does it have to be black?
No, it doesn’t! Although black is the traditional colour for forged ironwork, you really can have any colour you want. Or you can retain the beautiful natural appearance of the metal, with all its light and shade, by opting for a clear lacquer or beeswax finish, although we do not recommend this for exterior ironwork.
20. When will I need to replace it?
You won’t! All our ironwork is made to the highest standards of craftsmanship and so is built to last. This actually makes it extremely good value as its cost is spread over so many years, whereas something of lesser quality will need to be replaced much, much sooner.
21. I know what I want, but I don’t know what the technical specification is. Can you help?
Most definitely! We will work with you to ensure that your ironwork has the correct technical specification for its purpose, whilst still fulfilling its aesthetic requirements – the very essence of good design.
22. The ironwork I am planning forms part of a much bigger project. Is this a problem?
Not at all! We work on many such projects and are consequently very experienced in co-ordinating our activities with those of other contractors as well as and meeting exacting deadlines and keeping to strict budgets.
23. Can I come and see my ironwork being made?
With pleasure! We shall let you know when a particularly interesting part of the forging process is going to take place so that you can come and watch.
24. Why can Ripplecrafts be your best choices of business partner?
We are one of the leading manufacturers and exporters in our area. We have advantages as followed:
1. Shangqing Town, where our factory is located, is famous as the “Wrought Iron and Rattan Craft Town”. It is the source of the Anxi Craft Industry, which occupies more than 50% of the national exporting volume of wrought iron and rattan products. We have been in business for more than 10 years. Though beginning from just a working station for others, we are now the leading manufacturer of our industrial zone. We can produce all sorts of products made of wrought iron and rattan, including tables and chairs, baker’s racks, fireplace screens, clocks, plant stands, bird cages, candle-holders, wall décor and art, barstools, umbrella stands, trellises, baskets, room dividers and shoe/ newspaper/ wine/ bath/ CD and flower racks. Surely we can also make according to your requirements and specifications.
2. Our factory is located in Shangqing Town, Anxi County. We are only 30 kilometers from one of the biggest iron factories in Hutou Town, which largely reduces our material production costs.
3. We value our workers and treat them as our business partners. But the truth is that our labor costs are far cheaper than in other countries.
4. Another important feature is our management. We do not have a large number of fixed working staff lodged in our factory. We have 50 fixed working staff doing the accounting, designing, inspecting but we also have more than 1,000 moving skilled workers. Our factory scale is about 18,000 square meters, a medium-sized factory, but our production capability can reach 10 million USD a year. You will find that nearly every family’s house is a working station in our area. Some are perfect in molding, some in weaving, and some in painting. We coordinate them together, which greatly reduces our management costs.
5. We care. There is one thing for sure that you wouldn’t have to worry about if you bought from us: quality control. Most of our customers come to us because of our quality and competitive price. We cherish every order from our customers. The production costs are clearly shown in each purchase order. We are sincere and honest in our business with our customers.
6. We guarantee high quality, competitive pricing, timely delivery and, of course, complete customer satisfaction.