What is the best way to paint a large piece of glass (4ft x 6ft) opaque black? I was thinking about using PlastiDip, any opinions?

I considered film, but it's hard to find decent priced film that is 4ft wide, and I don't want to deal with seams.

I am turning it into a black dry erase board that will hang on my wall, so this will be the back of the glass. I am willing to put the time needed into it, to make it look decent. The size of the glass makes it a little awkward to work with.

  • Why glass as the board? Why not a less fragile material like 1/2" melamine?
    – ojait
    Jan 10 '16 at 23:05
  • Melamine "ghosts" after a while, and in fact so does polycarbonate. they are great if you take care to clean your writing regularly, but if you leave something on a board for a long time, it may permanently stain the material. Glass is impervious, and worst case scenario you can attack the ghosting with harsher chemicals. Also, I like glass in my study since it's more elegant than a piece of melamine.
    – Will I Am
    Jan 11 '16 at 0:06
  • So cover the melamine with PlastiDip and avoid a potential accident not using glass.
    – ojait
    Jan 11 '16 at 1:47
  • Not sure what that would accomplish. You can't write with dry erase markers on plastidip. The point of the plastidip was to create the black background for the glass (on the non-writing side). I have 24 windows in my house and the study door is a french door. Glass is fine. it's on the wall, three-four feet off the ground.
    – Will I Am
    Jan 11 '16 at 2:06
  • 1
    All that said, careful spray painting should suffice.
    – DA01
    Jan 11 '16 at 3:46

Most high quality enamel and acrylic spray paints will stick relatively well to glass; you will still need to take care not to scratch it.

I would clean the glass well with denatured alcohol to remove all traces of oil, dirt, etc. and spray at least 3 coats (following paint manufacturers instructions). Let it cure for a long time prior to manipulation, dry to the touch is not the same as cured. Unless you have some mad skill, I don't think a brush-on finish could match the "near perfect" finish of spray. Practice on scrap pieces to get comfortable with your paint brand, it's worth the money for an extra can for this, if you need it as nice as you state in your comment.

Consider a thin cardboard pad somehow attached to the back to protect the paint from being rubbed or scratched off, whatever frame ideas you have could probably accommodate that.


Unless you have some particular reason related to plasti-dip's peel-ability to choose that, just hit it with some black paint, and be careful not to scrape it when moving it (indeed, hit it with some black paint, and then you might want to cover the paint with paper for damage protection before moving it, after you check that the paint job is perfect.)

I'd probably reach for a can of BBQ black by default, but pretty much any black paint will do. The windows in some of the old barns where I grew up had been painted black (with a brush) and from the outside looked like black mirrors, even though the inside paint job was not very smooth - the glass makes the surface from that side.

I would let the paint dry a good long time before handling it at all.

  • +1 for taking the words right out of my mouth! Almost a duplicate of the answer I must have been typing when you posted yours! Jan 11 '16 at 3:58

I hope your glass is tempered. There spray cans or even brush on cans of "chalkboard paint"

  • Thanks. It is tempered. The chalkboard paint I've seen looked a little light charcoaly color (dark gray), not true black. but I'll have to make a small test patch. Should I use roller or spray can for best coverage? I need the part visible through the glass to be near perfect. I did a small test on a piece of glass with PlastiDip, and it came out pretty nice after three coats, but that is a lot of spray cans.
    – Will I Am
    Jan 10 '16 at 23:55
  • I added a link for what looked like a standard slate black for chalkboards. Rustoleum make a chalkboard flat black as well.
    – Jack
    Jan 11 '16 at 0:04
  • I think stackexchage swallowed one of my comments or I forgot to hit submit. I was asking, is there any reason to use "chalkboard" paint over other paint? The paint will be on the back (non-writing) side of the board, it's there just to make the board black. Also, if I have to rough and prime the glass first, i am concerned how it will look when seen through the glass. Roughing a large piece of glass by hand is unlikely to come out even. Thanks for the suggestion though, I will check it out.
    – Will I Am
    Jan 11 '16 at 0:27
  • What you are trying to do then is really not good. You scratch tempered glass in my expectation, it will become a pile of glass chips. That is what tempered glass is supposed to do when it is acted upon aggressively. I just read your post again. Dry erase will not need to be roughened up just painted on the back with regular black paint.
    – Jack
    Jan 11 '16 at 0:33
  • Hence why I don't want to "rough" it, so i'm trying to look for alternatives. For example, similar product at 2x the cost of the materials: staples.com/Enlighten-Glass-Dry-Erase-Markerboard-4-x-6-Black/…
    – Will I Am
    Jan 11 '16 at 0:37

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