Enamel paints not mixing with zippo lighter fluid

I tried mixing model master enamel paint with zippo lighter fluid for my panel washing.

The paint is turning into a pigment particle mess in the lighter fluid. It looks like grains of sand in clear liquid settling at the bottom.

Everywhere I read you can mix enamel paint with the zippo lighter fluid, am I doing something wrong?

Model Master enamels are the only enamel paints I can find in any of my Hobby shops.

I am using future floor finish as my clear coat, so if I have to use model master enamel thinner, will that eat through the gloss coat?

What’s the ratio of paint to lighter fluid you used? If you put too much lighter fluid, it will start to dissolve the paint.

And yeah, MM enamel thinner will eat through Future. Maybe not initially, but it will eventually.

I use Testor enamel with Zippo on Mr. Color Lacquer painted surface and I have no problem. The result does look like pigments suspended in colored liquid but it works fine for panel lining.

I use Model Masters gloss black and cheap ronsonol lighter fluid to thin for washes. Sounds like you have too much thinner, and should mix it better. Start out with the paint in a cup/tin/whatever, and add the thinner little by little stirring it until you get your ink consistency that you want. Remember lighter fluid evaporates pretty quickly so you may need to add to the mix as you use it.

Make sure your enamel paint in the jar is properly mixed through as well. Shaking the bottle isn’t good enough, you have to give it a good stir. Like the other folks have said, it sound like you’ve got just a bit too much lighter fluid in the mix. You just need it thin enough to flow in the cracks. I’ve done this for a wash before plenty of times and I can tell you every once and a while the paint gets, as you described, like sand suspended in clear liquid. Add a bit more paint and you should be fine.

I did stir the pain throughly. I think I may have added too much zippo fluid.

I will try a smaller amount and add more as needed. I didn’t know if you add too much it would do that to the paint!

Many thanks for all your help guys!

I’ve mixed enamels and Zippo lighter fluid before, and it just ended in the same problem you had, no matter how much paint I added to it. It might be the brand you’re using. I still don’t know why that happened with my paint, but the same may have happened to you.

I made another attempt yesterday with my enamels and used a small amount of zippo fluid and only 3 - 4 drops of paint.

I stirred with a toothpick and got much better results and the wash worked as expected. It did eventually turn into that Sandy mess again, but I stirred a little more Zippo fluid and paint and your good for a few more minutes.

I am just surprised at just how fast the zippo fluid evaporates. You really have to work fast before you need to reload fluid and paint again.

Thats the benefit of using it over regular enamel thinner. By evaporating quickly, there is less contact with your paint, so you have less of a chance of damage to your paint.