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Copper coated BBs for mixing paint - bad idea?

2 replies
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  • Member since
    August, 2017
Copper coated BBs for mixing paint - bad idea?
Posted by LDF on Friday, December 01, 2017 7:07 PM

I added a few copper coated steel BBs to some of my Tamiya acrylic paint jars to help mix/shake them. I noticed today when checking an almost empty jar of the x-21 flat base that there was dark crud at the bottom of the jar covering the BBs, although they still looked copper coated. I fished a few of them out of a jar of X-2 gloss white that was almost full, and the copper coating on the BBs appeared to be gone. 

Did I mess up using this type of BB? I'm reluctant to use these paints in an airbrush, not knowing if I'll be blowing some type of copper oxidation gunk through it. I'm thinking I could still use these for paint brushing, though. Anyone else ever have this problem?

  • Member since
    April, 2013
Posted by KnightTemplar5150 on Friday, December 01, 2017 7:45 PM

The copper coating has been lightly plated onto the surface of the BB and is only a few microns thick. It doesn't take much to cause it to lift it. Stainless steel is far less reactive in nature, so you will find most modelers recommending stainless ball bearings or something similar.


  • Member since
    April, 2009
  • From: Longmont, Colorado
Posted by Cadet Chuck on Friday, December 01, 2017 10:23 PM

I wouldn't risk using that paint in an airbrush, I would pitch it out and not use it in any way.  It might have a bad effect on the model, even if you brush it on.

Computer, did we bring batteries?.....Computer?


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