Question about masking off holes for finishing

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Forum topic by ScottStewart posted 08-04-2012 02:37 PM 1335 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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120 posts in 2334 days

08-04-2012 02:37 PM

Newb question, but I can’t figure out a great answer:

I am making a couple of toy cranes for my kids, and SWMBO has decreed they will be painted. (Ouch) These parts have a bunch of holes for differing axles, and I am trying to figure out how to let the kids paint without messing up my holes. Is there a foam or something you use that is easily removable? I debated using dowels to fill the holes, but thought they would likely get painted in, and when I went to drill them out would egg out the axle holes.

We are using a kid safe acrylic paint we found at hobby lobby if that makes any difference.

Thanks for any thoughts.


15 replies so far

View Don W's profile

Don W

19014 posts in 2769 days

#1 posted 08-04-2012 03:10 PM

Not seeing the projects this may not work, but can’t you just redrill them?

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View ScottStewart's profile


120 posts in 2334 days

#2 posted 08-04-2012 05:36 PM

That is what I will probably have to do, but I was afraid I would egg out the holes doing that. Thanks for the help.

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 3058 days

#3 posted 08-04-2012 05:43 PM

Use dowels in the holes

Make sure they are waxed

It also makes it easier to hold while



-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View MNgary's profile


303 posts in 2619 days

#4 posted 08-04-2012 11:07 PM

You should be able to use your fingers to twist the drill bit and avoid “egging”. I.e., don’t use a brace or an electric drill, just your fingers and the bit.

-- I dream of a world where a duck can cross the road and no one asks why.

View a1Jim's profile


117328 posts in 3779 days

#5 posted 08-04-2012 11:14 PM

Sometimes you can fill holes with tooth picks that have a little wax on them or short pieces of rubber or plastic tubing or plastic straws.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View Sawkerf's profile


1730 posts in 3270 days

#6 posted 08-04-2012 11:19 PM

You could mark your hole centers with a finish nail before the kids paint. When the paint is dry, use Forsner bits to drill nice, clean, holes.

-- Adversity doesn't build reveals it.

View racerglen's profile


3112 posts in 2982 days

#7 posted 08-04-2012 11:21 PM

Depending on the size of the hole, try Q tips, they may leave some fuzz that neds cleanup, but
they do pull out easliy.
a1Jim’s toothpicks are another goodie, also, again depending on size the bamboo skewers for BBQ that go for about a buck per hundred ?

-- Glen, B.C. Canada

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18390 posts in 3877 days

#8 posted 08-05-2012 12:22 AM

I would either use waxed dowels or twist a drill by hand.

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Fuzzy's profile


298 posts in 4190 days

#9 posted 08-05-2012 12:33 AM

Maybe go one size smaller dowel and wrap it with a few wraps of blue tape ???

-- - dabbling in sarcasm is foolish … if you’re not proficient at it, you end up looking stupid … ... ...

View Gatorjim's profile


217 posts in 2406 days

#10 posted 08-05-2012 12:59 AM

I would think you could use playdough just fill the hole a little lower then the surface then paint it. It should be easy after it dries to get the playdough out of the hole.

-- My theroy in wood working will be. If I'm not enjoying doing it i won't do it.

View HerbC's profile


1790 posts in 3061 days

#11 posted 08-05-2012 01:56 AM

Cut pieces of foam backer rod (used by builders to fill cracks before caulking, available at box stores) Use the pieces to fill the holes, remove after painting.

-- Herb, Florida - Here's why I close most messages with "Be Careful!"

View Gator's profile


383 posts in 3878 days

#12 posted 08-05-2012 09:16 PM

soda straws..?
How big are these holes ?

-- Master designer of precision sawdust and one of a kind slivers.

View ScottStewart's profile


120 posts in 2334 days

#13 posted 08-05-2012 11:17 PM

they are 3/8 inch for the one I am most worried about. Thank you for all the replies.

View bondogaposis's profile


5091 posts in 2553 days

#14 posted 08-06-2012 12:15 AM

Just pinch off a piece of pipe insulation, stuff the hole, and pull it out w/ needle nose pliers when done.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View Gshepherd's profile


1727 posts in 2403 days

#15 posted 08-11-2012 10:38 AM

For the size i think you could stick a few space balls in there and when done push them out….. I did this when my girls made some toy cars and such…...

-- What we do in life will Echo through Eternity........

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