Marking parts for reassembly

Does anyone have a suggestion of how to mark parts in such a way they could be painted over and still have the markings be somewhat visible? I'm working on building the benchwork for my model railroad, and have been separating and painting the different parts after dry assembly. I marked the different parts with a pencil so I don't have a big puzzle after I get done, but the pencil mark is hardly permanent.
The wood is mainly SPF, ripped 2x4s.
Puckdropper
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I take it that you want to mark them for assembly and disassembly after you're finished with them, not just during the building process.
How about a set of letter and number punches? I use them to mark the backs of hinges and latches and stuff when they need to go exactly back where they were upon reassembly. For instance, I'll stamp a number in the wood under a fitting, and then put the same number on the back of the hardware. No reason you couldn't do the same thing in the wood somewhere unobtrusive.
Tom Dacon
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I built my tables out of hollow core doors that had been boogered up and returned to the store.
I put dowel pins in, in different combinations so the panels can only go together one way.
I got the idea from a guy that used hardware from expanding tables for alignment and locking.
I started this when Ntrack was in its infancy and we HO folks had nothing comparable.
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Look on the websites of machinery supply companies and you will find metal stamp sets http://www.mcmaster.com / http://www1.mscdirect.com/CGI/GSDRVSM?PACACHE 0000071010502 They come in alpha and numeric with character sizes in 1/8 " thru 1/2". You can mark the pieces on locations that will be hidden after assembly.
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Strips of paper masking tape in combinations - one stripe, two stripes, three up to how many you want, with spaces separating groups out. Paint over the whole thing so you have er, raised stripes the same colour as the backgound.
Ditto with a shallow saw groove uf you'd rather.
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What he said. Shallow groove is how I was taught. Best of all is to arrange the cut so it touches both pieces. Same idea as the big V shape we all put across the boards when laying out a table top.
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I used my pocket knife to mark the boards, and that worked quite well. Everything reassembled nicely, and with 3/5 of the legs marked putting them back where they were wasn't too difficult.
Puckdropper
--
If you're quiet, your teeth never touch your ankles.

To email me directly, send a message to puckdropper (at) fastmail.fm
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