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Does anyone know if the paint over the Brass Valves has been brought to MTH's attention? Here are two examples of the latest engines from MTH I ordered. I am a little bummed that the brass valves are painted over. I tried searching if there was a post on this before but could not find one. Is there a safe method of removing the paint and exposing the brass?

MTH UP Big Boy 4014 Restoration Model and MTH B&O USRA Heavy Pacific 20-3815-1

MTH Big Boy Restoration 4014MTH Heavy Pacific B&O


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  • MTH Big Boy Restoration 4014
  • MTH Heavy Pacific B&O
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Not sure there is an easy method. I would try and remove them first. The risk is cracking the paint where it meets the boiler. Having stripped a few MTH boilers, parts like that have a post the sticks through the shell and is bent over. Some then have epoxy covering that extension which has to be pried away. Not a big deal if plan to repaint but more difficult if you want to not damage the paint.


For a good look, try some old school Testor’s gloss gold enamel, very slightly thinned with enamel reducer. Test on some scrap parts first. I’d leave the underlying black in place, and just use the gold to “ highlight “ whistle heads, pop off valves, etc. The highlighted look will look like a slightly tarnished brass, and can be easily done. Mask off surrounding surfaces with masking tape. Test on some scrap parts, old screws you may have lying around, etc…..when doing a repaint, this is my preferred method, as I’m not risking any damage to the components, or surrounding finishes,…..thin the gold to your taste. Just remember, the thinner you make it, the easier it will flow, so be prepared, test and know what you’re working with….


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