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Model Railroading > Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38


Date: 02/20/24 17:24
Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: CSX2605

I have an Athearn blue box loco that I need to strip off the paint and then repaint it to the proper color. I have had a few suggestions but thought I would ask here if anyone has done it successfully and what they used to get the paint off.
Thanks!



Date: 02/20/24 17:56
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: SALGUY

CSX2605 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I have an Athearn blue box loco that I need to
> strip off the paint and then repaint it to the
> proper color. I have had a few suggestions but
> thought I would ask here if anyone has done it
> successfully and what they used to get the paint
> off.
> Thanks!

I've stripped many of them with 91% isopropyl alcohol.  Works great.

Be sure to check put my Tampa Northern Model Railroad.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/879490203259220/?ref=share_group_link



Date: 02/20/24 18:25
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: Bscale316

Ditto for the 91%. If / when that doesn't work, I've used CitrusStrip (but test a spot just to be sure).
Bill in Ft Worth



Date: 02/20/24 19:51
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: CSX2605

Thanks for the advice! I’ll run with this and see how it goes.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/20/24 20:06
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: funnelfan

For speed and thoroughness, I like the Scalecoat II Wash Away paint remover. A 1 hour soak in fresh Wash Away will have the paint coming off very easy and cleanly with some light scrubbing with a old toothbrush. I reuse the liquid, but it looses some of it's effectiveness with each use, but I've reused it dozens of times

Ted Curphey
Ontario, OR



Date: 02/21/24 10:10
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: ATSFSuperCap

I use standard conventional brake fluid.   It is cheap and effective.  I soak it for a number of hours take it out and scrub with an old toothbrush and wash with water.   Brake fluid is water soluable.   It generally takes a couple of tries.  Brake fluid does wear out with use.    Be carefull of retail available strippers as they generally contain acid which will splatter everywhere while brushing and will eat a small hole in clothing.      With any of the stuff make sure to wear gloves.



Date: 02/21/24 13:44
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: CSX2605

funnelfan Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> For speed and thoroughness, I like the Scalecoat
> II Wash Away paint remover. A 1 hour soak in fresh
> Wash Away will have the paint coming off very easy
> and cleanly with some light scrubbing with a old
> toothbrush. I reuse the liquid, but it looses some
> of it's effectiveness with each use, but I've
> reused it dozens of times
Thank you! Another option to consider.

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/21/24 13:46
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: CSX2605

ATSFSuperCap Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I use standard conventional brake fluid.   It is
> cheap and effective.  I soak it for a number of
> hours take it out and scrub with an old toothbrush
> and wash with water.   Brake fluid is water
> soluable.   It generally takes a couple of
> tries.  Brake fluid does wear out with use.   
> Be carefull of retail available strippers as they
> generally contain acid which will splatter
> everywhere while brushing and will eat a small
> hole in clothing.      With any of the stuff
> make sure to wear gloves.
Thank you! I had an old hobby shop owner mention brake fluid and your description makes better sense than what he described. He’s been out for 25 years. 😉

Posted from iPhone



Date: 02/21/24 14:38
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: exhaustED

Acetone (nail varnish remover) works very quickly (seconds to minutes), as does MEK or ethyl acetate. Acetone is generally easier to get hold of and doesn't have too strong an odour..



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 02/21/24 14:40 by exhaustED.



Date: 02/21/24 15:27
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: bq23dash7

I would urge caution using Acetone, Ethyl Acetate, and/or Butanone (Methyl Ethyl Ketone (MEK)). Those will dissolve Styrene. In fact, Tamiya Extra Thin Cement is a mixture of those 3 solvents.

I've also heard horror stories of locomotive shells shattering like glass after immersion in brake fluid, sometimes many years after the fact.

John



Date: 02/22/24 09:54
Re: Question: Taking the paint off a Blue Box GP38
Author: exhaustED

bq23dash7 Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I would urge caution using Acetone, Ethyl Acetate,
> and/or Butanone (Methyl Ethyl Ketone (MEK)).
> Those will dissolve Styrene. In fact, Tamiya
> Extra Thin Cement is a mixture of those 3
> solvents.
>
> I've also heard horror stories of locomotive
> shells shattering like glass after immersion in
> brake fluid, sometimes many years after the fact.
>

Nothing wrong with caution but it'll take those solvents quite a while to dissolve styrene and similar plastics whereas they'll soften the paint very quickly. The paint already on the model will have been thinned with those types of solvents. Also a mixture of solvents is much more aggressive than any singly solvent, so using acetone for example is less likely to cause issues with the base plastic than a commercial paint stripping concoction/blend. 
So acetone etc can be used as very effective paint strippers but you won't need to soak the paint for hours in a solvent bath, a few seconds or a minute or two should be enough.



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