Yep. That process isn't that hard. If you put a lot of elbow grease into it, I bet you could make it look like polished stainless. Try not to touch it at all so that you don't leave any moisture on the surface. I would wipe the whole thing with denatured alcohol right before the lacquer to make sure all of the moisture is out. You could even run a heat gun on the whole project to evaporate water as well. The real question is how long will the lacquer protect it from rusting? I bet it would be about 10 years before you saw any rusting issues though, as long as you did it right. Just make sure there isn't any water in the tube steel when you are welding it up.
I was a site superintendent on a restaurant where we installed a mild steel custom welded storefront that was about 200 feet long by 15 feet tall. We didn't polish the steel, just left it in its raw state. We used the alcohol and heat gun to get rid of moisture before applying the clear finish, as that was what the finish manufacturer said to do. We used a finish by a company called Sculpt Nouveau. Call those folks up and ask them which of their products would work best. They are good folks.
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