How to make dry erase markers

Written by barbara stanley
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How to make dry erase markers
Dry erase markers come in many colours. (markers image by Aditia Patria Warman from

For centuries teachers used chalk to write on blackboards. Today's classrooms have whiteboards that require dry erase markers. Regular markers are made to be permanent, while dry erase markers are designed to write information on whiteboards that can wiped clean with any soft cloth or paper towel. The difference between the two markers is an oily silicone polymer added to dry erase to prevent a permanent mark. All of the ingredients for dry erase markers can be found craft and paint stores, outlet factories and wholesale distributors of craft supplies. An erasable ink comprises an organic solvent, optionally a resin soluble in the solvent, a pigment dispersed in the solvent and additives, according to Free Patents Online.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Ethanol
  • Plysurf A208S
  • Plysurf A2125
  • Monobasic carb acid ester
  • Microlith Black C-A
  • Ethyl Oleate
  • 2-Hexyldecanoic acid triglyceride
  • Liquid parafin
  • Carbon Black
  • Isopropyl myristate
  • Empty 591ml. bottle
  • Kitchen scale
  • Disposable plastic containers
  • Dry erase markers
  • 1 large funnel
  • 1 smallest funnel made

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  1. 1

    Prepare an area to weigh the chemicals you will be funnelling into the empty bottle. Because some of the chemicals have noxious fumes, make sure the room is adequately ventilated. It is a good idea to label each container with the chemical it will be holding. You will not fill the empty 591ml. bottle. There will be room to shake the ingredients well before using.

  2. 2

    Place an empty plastic container on the kitchen scale and add ethanol slowly until the scale shows 187gr. of ethanol. Remove the ethanol from the scale and set it aside. Place another empty container on the scale to weigh the surfactant plysurf A208S. You will need .4253gr. of this surfactant.

    How to make dry erase markers
    Plastic containers of various sizes will be needed to measure all chemicals. (Colourful plastic containers for children image by Gabees from
  3. 3

    Remove the surfactant from the scale and place another container to measure the next surfactant, plysurf A2125. Slowly add the chemical until it measures .5670gr. by weight. Remove the chemical from the scale and set it aside with the others.

  4. 4

    Continue placing clean containers on the scale as you pour each of the following chemicals by weight: monobasic carb acid ester, .14175gr

    microlith black C-A pigment, .20,701ml.

    ethyl oleate .10,350ml.

    2-hexyldecanoic acid triglyceride .11,829ml.

    liquid paraffin .8,872ml.

    carbon black .8,872ml.

    Isopropyl alcohol .14175gr.

  5. 5

    Pour each chemical through the large funnel into the 591ml. bottle. Shake the chemicals well to mix thoroughly. Use the small funnel to refill empty dry erase markers. For colours other than black, purchase colours such as Fuji AS Blue, Fuji AS Green and others as needed.

  6. 6

    Refill empty dry erase markers from the 591ml. bottle using the small funnel. The markers only hold a few millimetres each.

Tips and warnings

  • Solvents such as isopropyl alcohol and ethyl alcohol combine with the pigment and resin to keep the mixture liquid until applied to the whiteboard.
  • The fumes from these chemicals are flammable and can be hazardous to your health. It is not recommended that women who are pregnant mix these chemicals.

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