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Thoughts on BBs

July 13 2012 at 4:04 PM
Jim Johnson  (Login Bolie97)
HyperScale Forums
from IP address

I had a box of BBs years ago that I used to put into bottles of paint. This would speed the mixing of paint when shaking the bottle. It worked well. The BBs were from before the lead ban and I am sure they were copper coated lead. Looking to resume this practice, I was looking at my options. There are copper coated steel BBs and zinc coated steel also. Reviews of some spoke of rust in the package when new. That's dishartening, in aqueous based paints, you don't want rust. Lead shot would work if you could find it. The latger sizes, #4,BB,#2 buck would be the size, but where casn you find it these days? Any input or experience anybody has would be greatly appreciated.

Jim Johnson

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Jon Bius
(Login jonbius)
HyperScale Forums

Have you considered...

July 13 2012, 4:06 PM 

.... stirring instead of shaking the paints? I've switched to that, and I think it does a more thorough job, and my lids never get stuck.

I use a Badger battery operated stirrer, and I don't know how I ever lived without it!

Jon Bius
Modeling with a Higher Purpose

This message has been edited by jonbius from IP address on Jul 13, 2012 4:07 PM

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Brett Barrow
(Login barrowb98)
HyperScale Forums

I just use one of these...

July 13 2012, 4:12 PM 

[linked image]

Or these -

[linked image]

Badger paint stirrer or Tamiya stir sticks. Whichever one I grab first. I'm not James Bond, I like 'em stirred, not shaken.

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Erik Mark
(Login PhantPhan90)
HyperScale Forums

Do NOT use coated BB's in any Acrylics. They will corrode! I use

July 13 2012, 4:25 PM 

stainless bearings and add two to each bottle. Some enamels might? go with BB's, but I gave up on using them after ruining a few Acrylics.

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(Login RexTN)
HyperScale Forums

Jim, go to Hobby Lobby

July 13 2012, 4:26 PM 

go to Hobby Lobby, over in the Necklace section

over there , you will see some gray metallic beaded necklaces,,there are two sized of Hematite beads in those necklaces

they work great for the paints that say to "shake well before using" on the bottle labeling

you don't have to worry about rust, because Polished Hematite is already "as rusted as it can get"

I use them in all my Acrylic paints,,,,and have slowly been switching to them in my Enamels when I use up a bottle that had Copper or Lead BB's in them

if you have paints that have that "lump of pigment" deal going on,,just use one large and one small bead,,,you can beat that lump into submission in just a few minutes

if you are concerned about bubbles,,,,just shake your paints 3 at a time, and let them sit a minute before you open them and stir out any bubbles with a cocktail stick

or skip all the advice I typed above, and go to Wal Mart and look at the battery operated "foot sanders",,,,,,there are three different types of sanders near there,,,,chuck in a cocktail stick or piece of sprue that you have heated and pinched on the end with pliers

or do what I do,,,,,use both the beads and the battery operated "foot sanding paint stirrer"


one from each squadron??,,"geeez Rex, how many display cases will that take up?"


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Larry @ AUDI
(Login audiguy)


July 13 2012, 4:36 PM 

There are options here:

I use a "drink" mixer which is battery operated,
I have an electric paint shaker,
I split open a 4 shot 12 GA shotgun shell and put 2 un-coated lead BB's in paint jars, acrylic, lacquer, and enamel without incident,
I save 4" lengths of discarded sprue to use as stirring sticks.

I use those 4 methods every day.

This message has been edited by audiguy from IP address on Jul 13, 2012 4:39 PM

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Mark L.
(Login gatormark91)
HyperScale Forums

use my discarded old brushes...

July 13 2012, 4:40 PM 

I break off the brush end and use the rounded end of the handle to stir the paint. It does a really good job of getting all the pigment off the bottom of the bottle.

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Harold K
(Login HK72nd)

+1 Low-tech, works like a charm n/t

July 13 2012, 4:49 PM 

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Jim Johnson
(Login Bolie97)
HyperScale Forums

Answers, cudos and prevarications

July 13 2012, 5:27 PM 

Thanks for all your answers. I use/ have used most of these suggestions with sucess. As the saying goes, if you want to find the easiest way to do something, give it to a lazy man. I use Mr Color paint, which I consider God's gift to modelers. To spray it sucessfully, you need to thin it from 40 to 60 percent with Mr Leveling Thinner. I stir/mix/shake a bottle of paint and using a plastic throwaway straw I put half of a bottle in one of these


I use the 1oz size. THey are about half a buck each and work a treat. I put the paint in, use a wash bottle full of Mr Leveling Thinner to put an equal amount in and I'm good to go. I use a gravity feed airbrush so I'm not worried about bubbles as I turn the bottle upside down and the bubbles raise to the top. Put in enough to do what you want and paint. Need more? Squeeze a little more in. To much? squeeze the bottle, turn upside down and put in the cup. Let go and suck up all but a drop or two. Then you must always label the bottle. Run out? Repeat. I have filled up my bottle of say OD any number of times.

As you can see, stirrers won't fit in the top of the bottle. Pulling the friction fit tip out of the bottle can be a pain when full. If there was something I could drop in there to help mix the paint, my life would be even easier. Thinking about it, maybe some stainless nuts would work well. They wouldn't act like a check valve like something round would.

As they say on Match Game, "Good answer Rex, good answer". My wife does beading so nest time instead of splitting up, I'll follow her and see what I can find.

Jim Johnson

This message has been edited by Bolie97 from IP address on Jul 13, 2012 5:30 PM

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Max Bryant
(Login nametaken)
HyperScale Forums

don't use steel BB's in Acrylics. They will rust!

July 13 2012, 6:11 PM 

Ask me how I know.... LOL!


Max Bryant

"You'll Love My Wingnuts!"

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Peter D
(Login pdasso)
HyperScale Forums

Dremel + piece of sprue works great

July 14 2012, 2:12 AM 

[linked image]

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(Login Bravosierra001)
HyperScale Forums

I take the lead shot out of shotgun shells...

July 14 2012, 2:32 AM 

Find someone you know at work that hunts and then buy a shell off of them. Or just go buy a box, but that would be a bit much for what you are doing.


[linked image]

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Quincy Seymour
(Login quin2)
HyperScale Forums

Re: I take the lead shot out of shotgun shells...

July 14 2012, 9:11 AM 

You dont need to cut open shot gun shell to get lead shot (it can be a significant danger factor to you and others when you do). Instead, check out the local gun shops for one that carries reloading supplies or do a Google search for lead shot on line.
It's somewhat expensive - minimun amount is a 25 lb bag and that can cost up to 50 bucks. But it does last a long time - I purchased a 25 lb bag 25 or so years ago and still have between 4 and 6 lbs left. (if you know some one who reloads see what they would charge you for a pound or two.)

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Wayne Funderburk
(Login f14tomcat)
HyperScale Forums

Go to Hobby Lobby or Micheals

July 14 2012, 8:57 AM 

Go to the flower dept. They have bags of glass beads for use in vases. There are two or three different sizes. Get the smallest size put two in a bottle and go for it. I give mine to my grandson and tell him to shake it up. Does a good job of it.


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