Acid etch brass?

Do you guys use Jax blackening solution on brass parts? I have some tie plates and fish plates from Proto:87...just wondering if okay to blacken brass


  • edited December 2018
    There are different types of Jax for different metals. They have a specific one for brass. The one we usually use for the white metal castings doesn't do brass, it doesn't penetrate and rubs off.
    "Blacken-it" - the original hobby type from A-west used to do both white metal and brass.
    Hope this helps.

  • Terry
    I have tried the Jax Blackening solution for brass and while it does blacken the brass, it doesn't completely blacken it as well and it rubs off easily leaving the underlying brass. If you don't handle the part too much before applying it to your model it has given me an acceptable result. But using the proper solution will render the best result.
  • I just weathered a few lengths (32 scale feet) of nickel silver track (for hand laying) and it suddenly occurred to me that I probably should have 'blackened' it before weathering...a drywall 'mud' tray would work well for this....anyone blacken their rail??? any thoughts?..
  • I tried it once for the rail on my layout. Did not work out as well as I would have hoped. I had the same problems noted above with flaking, etc. I found for diorama track, painting is the best way to go. Give a nice dark brown base coat and weather from there. Use some graphite on the rail head when all other weathering is done.
  • Terry,

    As Bryan has pointed out, it seems that spraying the rail with rail brown and then applying chalks as desired gets good results. Once I have the rail spiked in place I will do some touch-up and then sand the top of the rail (mostly for better electrical conductivity) but if this is a rarely used siding and you won't be running a locomotive over the rail you can leave it rusted.

    Later, Dave S Tucson, AZ
  • edited December 2018
    Micro Engineering sells pre-blackened rail. That is the way I would go if blackened rail is a preference.
    Personally I only used to build dioramas so I never needed much.
    Sprayed with a rattle can, installed, touched up with a brush where needed and chalk weathering.
    Sand the top with 800grit to leave a shiny rail head for a used line or leave weathered for abandoned.

  • i've had a few ounces of jax in a rubbermaid container for a couple of years, and i think it's time to get rid of it and put some fresh jax in it. my question is, what is the best way to dispose of the used solution?
  • Your local trash collection company should have a website that will direct you where to drop off hazardous materials like the used acid, razor blades, old paint, etc...
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