Spray painting tips to paint like a pro

I’ve gathered a lot of spray painting tips over the years but I’ve never seen more than 10 collected in one place. Spray paint is a tool, and using it is a skill you can learn. With a bit of practice, you can get enviable results and make the object you’re painting look better than new.

Whether you’re painting something for your house or for your hobby, here are more than 20 spray painting tips to help you paint with the best of them–in the order you’re likely to need to use them in your projects.

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A DD-WRT USB print server

If your router has a USB port and is running DD-WRT, you can turn it into a DD-WRT USB print server. It can still do wireless duty while it allows your computers to print to your wired USB printer over your wired or wireless network. It’s not very intuitive or user friendly, but it works. Here’s how to set it up with Windows 7. Other Windows versions will be about the same.

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Repair a Marx 1209 transformer

Want to repair a Marx 1209 transformer? There are two schools of thought. One is that small, sub-75 watt transformers aren’t worth fixing because they are so cheap. The other is that since they are so cheap, you have nothing to lose by trying.

Marx didn’t design its transformers to be fixed, but the design is extremely simple. The hardest part really is getting the case apart and then getting it back together. If Marx had designed them to be serviced, like its competitors did, they would have cost more, so we wouldn’t have as many Marx trains to enjoy today. So it’s easy enough to forgive Marx for this.

Let’s dive in.

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Repair a Marx reverse unit

When it comes to Marx repairs, the reverse unit is the end of the innocence. Motor repairs are rather easy; reverse unit repair can be as hard as you want it to be.

I’ll share some things I do that seem to make it go easier.

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The indestructible Marx motor

Want to hear a Marx story? Of course you do. Early this month I bought an early basket-case Marx 999 and some scale cars that obviously were stored for decades in a garage or attic exposed to humidity and temperature extremes. There was rust all over the place, to the point where the rust had bound some parts together. Paint was flaking off.

The locomotive itself had all of those problems too. Plus two driver wheels, their bearings and axle, and a gear were missing. What was left of the motor felt seized up. I spun the armature with some pliers to free it, and then I put a bit of oil on the parched, dried-out felt wick around the armature. You know what I was thinking.

Of course this poor, neglected motor wasn’t going to run. Motors this neglected and abused never do. But still, I had to see if it had any life left in it. I got out my spare transformer and clipped two test leads to it. I clipped the black terminal to the frame of the motor and the red terminal to the pickup shoe. I applied power, and that motor proved me wrong. It ran really well.

It doesn’t happen this way every time, but it does more often than not.

So what did I do with this motor? I had another 999 motor that was missing some parts, so I was able to combine the two to get one working motor.

Your Lionel 675 light does not work? Fix it!

Your Lionel 675 light does not work, you say? Mine didn’t either, but the fix was really simple. You might not even need any parts.

The postwar 675 (and its brothers, the 2025 and 2035) have a quirk in their design that can make the light bulb quit working. But it’s easy enough to fix it, once you know what to look for.

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