For years I have used engineers blue as the basis for when I’m marking out a piece of work, but of late I have swapped to using a permanent marker.
The table that I recently made for my Unimat 3 Pillar Drill.
Here I marked the table with a permanent marker and left it to dry before carefully marking the 8 radius lines.
I then used these lines to align the table on the milling table and then used a slot drill along each radius line.
The permanent marker comes off over time or instantly with a cleaning fluid.
The image to the right shows a bearing block that has been marked up ready to be machined in the mill.
Sometimes it is necessary to allow the permanent marker to dry and then apply another coat of marker. This then gives a much thicker application of black colour to mark onto.
The downside of the permanent marker is that it is more readily removed than the engineers blue. The benefit is that you get to a touch dry much quicker. Also, you don’t tend to end up with marker all over the work surface and your hands.
Permanent blue marker works perhaps even better than black marker. I use a high quality marker such as those made by BIC as these last much longer.
The image shows blue marker applied to the hornplates for the miniature Burrell traction engine.