Hmmm. Your copper idea is very innovative. Sounds like something I might come up with. I like copper, and I work with it quite a bit. If your heart is set on using the half-cut pipe, go for it. But one thing I would suggest. Don't coat it with lacquer. It won't work. Unless you do a commercial coating, it will eventually tarnish, no matter what. Then you would have a tarnished copper pipe coated with lacquer. And even if you were able to commercially coat it, it is in an exposed area and will have lots of wear - bumping, dishes, pots and pans, etc., and you would end up with scratches that would turn dark. My advice is, if you like copper, learn to like the natural patina of it, like on the Antiques Road Show. Copper is pretty when it's all pink and shiney, but it's not realistic. That's my two cents 9or four or five). Good luck.