Pinball Tips: Color matching

Here’s some good advice on how to paint and touch up your game.

Color Wanted: Start with: Add a little:
Green Yellow Blue
Orange Yellow Red
Brown Red Black
Maroon Red Black & Magenta
Cream White Yellow
Tan White Brown
Ivory White Yellow & Brown
Gray White Black
French Gray White Yellow & Black
Olive Green Yellow Black & White
Pink White Red
Flesh White Red & Yellow
Coral White Orange
Purple Magenta Blue
Gold Yellow Brown
Lime Green Yellow Green & White

More hints:

  • Realize that not all areas of the playfield or cabinet, even if they were painted a single color, will remain the same color over time.  Different areas may fade to different shades.
  • Also note that many paint colors will change slightly as they dry, or appear different if a clear coat is added later, and try to do some test runs to see how the final result will appear before committing.
  • Mix your paint and put some on a piece of clear plastic and hold it over the area you’re going to touch up to see how well it matches.
  • You can pick up a pantone color matching set at most hardware and paint stores and use this to help match colors.
  • Don’t use hot water to clean the paint brush. This can weaken the glue that holds the bristles together and cause bristles to fall out.
  • There sites online such as this one ( http://pinballpal.com/colors/  ) which has color formulas for some popular pinball games.

The art of pinball (part 1)



Pinball is many things: Commerce, gambling, history, reflections on social times, science and technology as well as art. In this episode, we take a look at some of the art. These are pictures I’ve taken of various games featured at the Lone Star Pinball Museum near Houston. Special thanks to Dan Ferguson for his hospitality. I hope you enjoy them!

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