Thanks everyone. You could absolutely paint it - it might reduce the thermal dissipation a little but probably not by much. I'm actually a fan of the weathered copper/steampunk look. It's a little scratch prone - I just got a small one today when I put it in my pocket with my keys. The good news is that it's easy to remove and polish again. I just used a dremel with #5 and #6 polishing compound after I made the rough cuts and sanded down the sharp edges.