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Last week Roger Kujawa posted (https://model-railroad-hobbyist.com/node/41200) a great video tutorial on painting freight and passenger car wheels with a paint pen. Roger used a Woodland Scenics Track Painter. I haven't found one of those locally, and they're over $10 on Amazon.
Oddly enough, about the same time Roger posted the video, I was buying a Testors Craft paint dark brown paint pen at a local general goods store named Bi-Mart. According to my receipt it was $5.19. I tried it out this week, and it's kinda dark, and a bit glossy. Good coverage though.
I also had a brown "Tree House paint marker," probably from Hobby Lobby, that I tried out on a couple other cars. Again, not too bad, although as a fine tip it took more work to get full coverage.
So today I decided to go shopping. Salem/Keizer has three major craft stores, Craft Warehouse, Hobby Lobby, and Michaels. I also needed to go to Walmart, so I hit their craft department too.
This is what I found:
Walmart: Marvy Uchida Graffiti, six-pack of fabric markers $6.97
Craft Warehouse: Deco Color Dark Brown: $4.99, Deco Color Orange: $4.99 (these are oil pens, and I was hoping to combine the colors to something more akin to rust. More on that later.)
Michaels: Craftsmart Metallic Copper (I thought it was brown...and maybe it is) $4.99
Hobby Lobby: Newell Painters red (I missed the color name and the cap looked browner in the light - shopper beware!) $4.69
Hobby Lobby brand Paint Marker, medium tip, brown. $2.99
TreeHouse Rose Gold paint marker. $2.99
Marvy Fabric Marker $2.19
Brown Sharpie Medium Point Oil Based Paint Marker $3.99
(Note: some prices were discounted due to sale or coupon - the Newell Painters only cost me $2.81, for instance)
The test was pretty simple - I had a roll of steel flashing that I got from my dad. I cut off a length of it and made up labels. I then applied the markers to it, using from between one and three strokes:
Taking photos of sheet metal is... not easy. I tried to cancel out as much of the reflections as I could.
Somewhere between here and Facebook, someone had been singing the praises of the Marvy fabric markers, so I was looking for them to include in this test. As a general rule, they performed poorly. After giving the markers some time to dry, I ran my thumb across them. The fabric markers were the only ones that smeared.
I did blend the two Deco Color pens, and you can see that on the right.
Interestingly, the two single colors that appeared to work best were the Craftsmart Metallic Copper (although I can't be positive that it was that, since the package had been opened and the pen was not labeled with the color) and the Tree House Rose Gold. Sharpie Oil came in right behind them.
This article first appeared on model-railroad-hobbyist.com
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