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pens for marking-out steel?


jericho
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Is there such a thing as a felt/fibre tipped pen for marking out on steel?

Are there any other options besides a scribe?

Also,I have bought quite a few carp centre punches (automatic and manual) - can anyone recommend a top quality make that will keep its point for more than 5 minutes?

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Thanks,I was hoping for something very fine to serve a similar purpose to a scribe.I do use felt tipped pens,but they stop marking very quickly.

Wouldn't have thought of French chalk - I remember that from the seventies when my Mum used to make her own clothes. :)

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Engineers blue and a sharp scriber will do most of it,if your tools are blunting quickly maybe you need to realise which are hardened materials etc.The Westinghouse first year apprenticeship workshops I went through in the early eighties were more valuable than I could have ever thought - I use those skills every day.

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I tend to use black or silver sharpies or a scriber. the silver ones work very well on non-bright materials provided you clean the oil coating off first.

If I need a highlighted mark I clean the metal with brake cleaner and use a

Sharpie. I tied pound shop markers, they aren't very permanent and don't last

long.

I have an Eclipse Automatic Center punch, it stays sharp pretty well.

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Is there such a thing as a felt/fibre tipped pen for marking out on steel?

Are there any other options besides a scribe?

Also,I have bought quite a few carp centre punches (automatic and manual) - can anyone recommend a top quality make that will keep its point for more than 5 minutes?

A decent branded centre punch, (Eclipse has already been mentioned,) will keep its point better than one from the market stall. Again it's also been mentioned above, be aware how hard the object is that you want to punch. Hardened steel will kill any punch quickly.

If you have the know how - make your own. I have two centre punches I made during my apprentice years, they are still good today. Made from silver steel, the business end only is heated in a forge and oil quenched. Now at 65 plus on the Rockwell C scale, they are then tempered in the same flame at a lower temperature and re-quenched. I forget how hard they are after tempering but they shouldn't shatter, which at 65 Rc there is a good chance of. More info on silver steel here.

The best ink markers I have used are Paper Mate M15, they seem to work well on unclean, rusty surfaces, and they keep working when used like that. Obviously a clean surface will produce best results.

I've also used Pentel N50. They are good but give up quickly if used on a rusty surface.

French Chalk seems to work well for me, if i need a finer point i can use a file to make it finer.

Chalk markings are great if you are freehand gas cutting to a line.

I dont like relying on engineers blue, always rubs off when you dont want it too, and sticks when you want to get the stuff off!

Engineer's marking out blue (not to be confuse with Engineer's Micrometer blue, aka Prussian blue) is only really meant to stay there while you are scribing your lines, prior to centre punching. Then it doesn't matter if it comes off - in fact it's meant to come off pretty easily, a bit like a dry wipe marker on a white board does.

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Sharpies or any good quality felt pen.

And as for centre punches you can't beat an old reamer, about 6mm (1/4) with a point ground on it. Lasts for years and they're free, or diesel injector needles, pre sharpened and as hard as a hard thing thats been to a UFC match. :P

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I vote for Sharpie fine point pen for most stuff plus TipEx pen for writing on Black Steel - and a scribe for when all else fails!

The thing I like about a scribe to mark out for centre-punching is you can drag the punch along one scribed line and feel where a line crosses it. This gives a punch on the intersection at least as accurately as an optical centrepunch. Difficult with marker pen lines!

Si

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