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Old 05-03-2019, 11:34 AM   #1
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Default How Long Do Markers Last?

I just reached for my Zig Writer markers and it got me thinking. I bought them about 10 years ago and they still work great. I admit that I don't use them terribly much, but I would have thought they would dry out after a while. Is it just a testament to the quality of Zig products or is it something else. I'm really curious as to what others have experienced with regards to a markers lifespan.
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Old 05-03-2019, 03:47 PM   #2
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I've had really good luck with Tombow markers; used them for years and they were still going strong when I sold them. I thought I didn't need them any longer after I bought Copics. It wasn't long before I regretted selling my set (which at the time had 144 colors). I bought a new set not long ago, only 96 markers. I hope the longevity is still there!

I keep my markers stored away when not using them, so that may have something to do with their lifespan.
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Old 05-04-2019, 12:14 AM   #3
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I bought a whole bunch of Memento markers at least 10 yeas ago - like you with the Zigs I don’t use them much so none are “used up” in that way; they still work just fine. I guess keeping your markers tightly capped and stored away from direct heat is probably a good way to give them as long a life as possible.
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Old 05-04-2019, 07:44 AM   #4
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Tombow and Momento still going strong. Despite refreshing, some of my Distress markers gave it up after little use. Too bad because they are some of my favorite colors. I’m not replacing them.
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Old 05-04-2019, 07:58 AM   #5
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I have Prismacolor markers I needed for non-crafty classes maybe 15 years ago? They’re still fine. So are very old Sharpies. Distress markers dried out relatively quickly.

I wondered if alcohol based markers might stay fresh longer, but my water-based Zig Clean Color Brushes are like new - and think Zigs are high quality.
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Old 05-04-2019, 08:54 AM   #6
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It's good to know that Prismacolor markers have a long life span as I have a bunch. I'll stay away from the Distress Markers. It doesn't make sense to spend my limited money on something that won't work for very long. I didn't even know Momento had markers, I'll have to check them out as I love their ink. I'll look at the Tombow markers as well.
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Old 05-04-2019, 12:47 PM   #7
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Water based markers are usually going to last longer than a marker that is alcohol based because they don't evaporate as quickly. I've had some Tombow markers that lasted over 10 years.
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Old 05-04-2019, 01:05 PM   #8
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Wonder what the life of a well cared for Ciao Copic is. I’m buying about 100 of those through an estate sale. I knew the person and believe they were gently used. At 1.50 each probably can’t go too wrong since they are refillable.

Does anyone know about places that refill Copics? I’ve heard that is an available service in big cities, not sure about online. I’m not sure I will use them enough to justify buying bunches of refills.
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Old 05-04-2019, 05:38 PM   #9
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I have an orange Tombow pen I bought, at least 13 years ago. Still going strong! I don't use it often, but it hasn't dried out yet AND I had it in a storage unit for probably two of those years..still no issues! My SU markers however, almost all dried out and I had a whole set.


Disclaimer: I still love SU products though!
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:10 AM   #10
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I've had great longevity with my Tombows (some are 15 years old) and Zigs (about 8 years), but am disappointed in how quickly some of my Distress markers have dried up. I don't use my alcohol markers very often but they seem to be holding up.
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Old 05-07-2019, 08:55 AM   #11
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I have both Zig Writer and SU! markers. I have not had problems with either brand drying out. My SU! markers are around 6 years old. My Zigs are - drumroll, please - 14 years old and are working just fine. I have no idea how they have lasted this long as I use do them and my children have used them many times for school projects. I have had plenty of markers run out of ink because we used them so much, but none have dried up (of either brand).
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Old 05-07-2019, 09:54 AM   #12
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I have many brands of markers and they are still going strong after many years including SU! that are over 15 years old. However my Distress markers started to dry up after only one year. And yes, I made sure the caps were on tight. Worst Tim Holtz product I ever bought and the only one I regret. I stored them horizontally too. A few still work so I keep them for Art Impressions watercolour stamps. I never did get the desired watercolour look that we now get with Zig or Arteza markers. I always got a line where the marker was laid down.
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Old 05-07-2019, 12:04 PM   #13
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My SU markers dried out. I saw a post where you can take the tips off and add reinkers. I am extremely disappointed that SU doesn't sell an individual marker.
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Old 05-07-2019, 01:22 PM   #14
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Silly of me to ask about how long an alcohol marker might last, so many variables. I don’t hear complaints about Copics drying up really fast though so that’s a good sign.

Horizontal and well capped on my Distress markers also. Disappointing because I loved the colors. Still have a few working ones left. Not buying them again though.

Yes on the Zigs. I just have good luck with inky stuff of all kinds that are manufactured in Japan.
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Old 05-07-2019, 02:58 PM   #15
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I read online somewhere that you can possibly revive alcohol markers by uncapping them, putting the tip in 90% alcohol and leaving it there until you start to see color leaking into the alcohol. I haven't tried it, but it may be worth it if you're going to ditch the markers, anyway...
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Old 05-07-2019, 03:21 PM   #16
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I’m going to try that. I have one sketch marker that dried up within a week after purchase. I figure the cap must have been off somewhere before it got to me. Other possibility is the filling machine screwed up. I’ll give it a try. There are no filling stations for Copics near me and it’s not a color I adore anyway. I’ll report back.
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Old 05-07-2019, 06:05 PM   #17
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Instead of putting the uncapped marker into the alcohol, I removed a tip the way you would to add reinker to the marker and just added the alcohol instead. Then I recapped and laid it down horizontally overnight. Worked great!

If the marker dries up without much use all of the pigment is still in there, I suppose. Just needs more of the carrier -- in this case alcohol.
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Old 05-08-2019, 04:30 AM   #18
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I bought every color of Spectrum marker and regret the waste of money. At least one marker out of every pack was dry upon opening. Many have dried out since, their purchase, even those I've never opened. The tips aren't consistant, some are very pointed and others are rounded as if smashed down. The caps are all on tight. To add insult to injury, the store I purchased them from refused to honor their return policy stating they had too many returned already.
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Old 05-08-2019, 11:44 AM   #19
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Quote:
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I bought every color of Spectrum marker and regret the waste of money. At least one marker out of every pack was dry upon opening. Many have dried out since, their purchase, even those I've never opened. The tips aren't consistant, some are very pointed and others are rounded as if smashed down. The caps are all on tight. To add insult to injury, the store I purchased them from refused to honor their return policy stating they had too many returned already.

Which should be their clue that they needed to contact the vendor/manufacturer they sourced the markers from - there were obviously issues if that many were returned... You shouldn't have to bear the brunt of a manufacturing issue - that's just poor customer service!

I've said it before in other threads, and I'll say it again here: I have the entire collection of Spectrums and will use them until they die or whatever, but I won't replace them, for sure! My pet peeve is the entire tip (nib and "holder") coming off when I remove the cap, leaving me staring at the innards of the marker. It has happened on way too many of these for me to think it's unusual. I also have a blue marker that colors pink(!) and several others that have changed color over time. I think that quality control on this particular product is non-existent. On the up side, I DO love the racks for them!
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Old 05-08-2019, 02:10 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by gregzgurl View Post
You shouldn't have to bear the brunt of a manufacturing issue - that's just poor customer service! I think that quality control on this particular product is non-existent. On the up side, I DO love the racks for them!
I love the racks also and am glad I have enough to hold every color of Spectrum. Another issue (other than the inconsistent sharp tips) is that when I removed some of the chisel tips to add the alcohol to revive them, the tips were WOOD and several actually shredded.
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Old 05-13-2019, 01:10 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by gregzgurl View Post
Which should be their clue that they needed to contact the vendor/manufacturer they sourced the markers from - there were obviously issues if that many were returned... You shouldn't have to bear the brunt of a manufacturing issue - that's just poor customer service!

I've said it before in other threads, and I'll say it again here: I have the entire collection of Spectrums and will use them until they die or whatever, but I won't replace them, for sure! My pet peeve is the entire tip (nib and "holder") coming off when I remove the cap, leaving me staring at the innards of the marker. It has happened on way too many of these for me to think it's unusual. I also have a blue marker that colors pink(!) and several others that have changed color over time. I think that quality control on this particular product is non-existent. On the up side, I DO love the racks for them!

Do the Spectrum Marker Holder's fit Copic markers? I've thought about getting them & trying it but I thought you might know.
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Old 05-13-2019, 01:12 PM   #22
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I love the racks also and am glad I have enough to hold every color of Spectrum. Another issue (other than the inconsistent sharp tips) is that when I removed some of the chisel tips to add the alcohol to revive them, the tips were WOOD and several actually shredded.
Do you have any Copic markers to know whether or not they fit into the Spectrum Marker Holders?
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Old 05-13-2019, 04:08 PM   #23
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Do the Spectrum Marker Holder's fit Copic markers? I've thought about getting them & trying it but I thought you might know.
I don't own a single Copic, but my Prismacolor markers and big, fat Crayola markers both fit just fine, so I'm guessing Copics would also fit. The openings are just a hair shy of 3/4" x 3/4" when the trays are stacked, if that helps...

Edited to add: I just Googled the dimensions of a Sketch marker and it said "5/8" wide and just under 1/2" thick", so the Sketch will definitely fit. From photos I've seen (couldn't find actual dimensions anywhere), the Ciao look to be smaller, so they should fit just fine, as well...
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Last edited by gregzgurl; 05-13-2019 at 04:20 PM.. Reason: More information
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Old 05-13-2019, 04:16 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gregzgurl View Post
I don't own a single Copic, but my Prismacolor markers and big, fat Crayola markers both fit just fine, so I'm guessing Copics would also fit. The openings are just a hair shy of 3/4" x 3/4" when the trays are stacked, if that helps...
Thank you so much! That answers my question.
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Old 05-13-2019, 05:36 PM   #25
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The Stampin' Up "Stamp & Write" markers also fit in the Spectrum trays if you don't mind the length of the cap (approx. 1-1/2") sticking out. As my Spectrums become unusable, I'm replacing them with Stampin' Up.
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Old 05-13-2019, 07:00 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jevick View Post
The Stampin' Up "Stamp & Write" markers also fit in the Spectrum trays if you don't mind the length of the cap (approx. 1-1/2") sticking out. As my Spectrums become unusable, I'm replacing them with Stampin' Up.


Thank you both (and @gregzgurl) for your quick responses! I appreciate knowing this so now I can make an informed decision about whether my Copic markers will fit. Thank you!! 😀😀

Last edited by Luvingstamping; 05-13-2019 at 07:04 PM.. Reason: Add additional person
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Old 05-21-2019, 08:19 AM   #27
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Quote:
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I bought every color of Spectrum marker and regret the waste of money. At least one marker out of every pack was dry upon opening. Many have dried out since, their purchase, even those I've never opened. The tips aren't consistant, some are very pointed and others are rounded as if smashed down. The caps are all on tight. To add insult to injury, the store I purchased them from refused to honor their return policy stating they had too many returned already.

I bought a few packs of those markers when they first came out and I was extremely dissapointed in the quality. They dried out after using them once or twice. Some were dried out from the beginning. I know Copic markers are pricier but they are my go to alcohol marker and they can be refilled.
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Old 05-21-2019, 08:37 AM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jevick View Post
I bought every color of Spectrum marker and regret the waste of money. At least one marker out of every pack was dry upon opening. Many have dried out since, their purchase, even those I've never opened. The tips aren't consistant, some are very pointed and others are rounded as if smashed down. The caps are all on tight. To add insult to injury, the store I purchased them from refused to honor their return policy stating they had too many returned already.
I also bought every marker and refills. Such a waste of money, they dry up so fast and yes even the refill bottles dry up.
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Old 05-21-2019, 09:49 AM   #29
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I’m going to try that. I have one sketch marker that dried up within a week after purchase. I figure the cap must have been off somewhere before it got to me. Other possibility is the filling machine screwed up. I’ll give it a try. There are no filling stations for Copics near me and it’s not a color I adore anyway. I’ll report back.
You can buy copic refills on line and add them yourself. I have never tried, but I've seen them for sale and tutorials on how to do it. I have run out of ink on a couple Copic Ciao that I used a lot, and on my colorless blender - I use that one all the time, so I bought a new one. (I can usually get them 50% off with a coupon at a big craft chain store, so not worth the trouble of refilling to me).
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Old 05-21-2019, 09:50 AM   #30
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I, too, have had issues with SU! markers and echo the sentiment about wishing they'd sell individual colors! I love SU! products, but the markers have been a disappointment -- one of the "in colors" from last year died about Christmas even though it hadn't been used and was stored horizontally. Prismacolor and Zig, definitely worth it though.
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Old 05-21-2019, 09:12 PM   #31
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Have had my copic sketch markers for years and lots of refills and I fill them when I need. Easy to do at home and refills last for ages. My favourite colouring markers.
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Old 05-22-2019, 06:12 AM   #32
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Have had my copic sketch markers for years and lots of refills and I fill them when I need. Easy to do at home and refills last for ages. My favourite colouring markers.

Same here. I buy the Copic refill ink for the colors I use the most.

I'm wondering if anyone uses the Marvy water based markers? I bought a bunch of them to use with my Art Impressions water color stamps ( my SU markers really did not work well for the technique used with these stamps). All the early tutorials for these stamps were done using Marvy markers but I've noticed recently, they seem to be using Tombow. I sure hope the investment I made in the Marvy markers was a good one.
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Old 05-23-2019, 07:36 PM   #33
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I have several SU markers that have dried up but I just use the re-inker and add a drop or two to the nib when I want to color something. The fine point I just stick into the opening of the re-inker bottle and tip it up. I really have been thinking about buying other markers though due to the fact I can't just replace the colors I need.
How do the colors of Zig and Prismacolor match up to SU Card stock? Does anyone know?
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Old 05-24-2019, 05:46 AM   #34
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Do the Spectrum Marker Holder's fit Copic markers? I've thought about getting them & trying it but I thought you might know.

Yes! In my racks right now I've got Spectrum Noir, Copic Sketch, and both old and new style SU Blendies.

I've got most/all of the SNoir and won't be keeping them as they dry out. After using the Copics a bunch of times at swaps, I've found I really like them better. If I acquire a good selection of Copics, I'll gift my SNoir markers to a friend.
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Old 06-02-2019, 03:37 AM   #35
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I cannot use alcohol markers inks or really anything alcohol based because i am highly sensitive to the smell.
so first i got zig brushables they are pigment markers you can heat emboss with them too really cool theres 24 markers and 48 colours both ends are brush tips and theyve got the same tip as zig clean colour I recommend them except that overall i think i like the clean colour better except that those are dye inks not pigment basically both are water based no smell no alcohol but cannot heat emboss the clean colour but you can watercolour which is awesome!

so yeah i like how you can do it with or withoiut water,

As to how long the first set of brushables must be going on at least 5 or 6 years and they still work - but some of the colours ran out and couldnt find them many places let alone find them single colours like the clean colour ones which is advantage i also got a second set of brushables (both sets were presents actually!) and I didnt really know anything about clean color at ALL! because the first video i saw was all about brushables and how you could colour on elizabeth craft designs glitter (microfine) and you can do this with copics but you can also do it with brushables either stamped images or using peel off stickers! its a awesome technique! one day ill get around to uploading some photos of what i made recently wth this technique.
So the first (the ones that are not empty) and the second set of brushables (about maybe 3 years ago) are going strong.

The clean colour real brush markers i got the 80 set and then zig came out with 90 markers only about 2 or 3 months after i got the set i realy wanted some different markers with a lot of lighter colours for faces of animals or people when i am colouring my stamps! and these markers are AWESOME! i mean i love my brushables but theres no facial colours and not many light colours i had to mix yellow pink and brown to get a white facial colour it was HARD!

So these markers are less than 1 year old and i am hoping theyll last forever! I bought about 6 markers loose from SSS to get the majority of the new colours esp the blender pen.

i have also had sharpies for years and years! I never bought distress markers at all.

I do have mini distress ink pads in all colours and some of the distress oxides...but no markers...

So thats my experience!

I really love zig! I wouldnt say the clear glitter pen lasts because i always use it so much and so its only lasts a year maye 6 months to a year!

from Erin
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