Another question from me ^^, been practicing a lot lately with different paints and coats. I got two questions.
1. I tried to spray with my airbrush some Future shine (pledge) just after I cleaned my airbrush with Tamiya airbrush cleaner, do you know if this product makes some small depots in the airbrush because I saw some just after I put pledge in my airbrush. I could clean up no problem but I wonder if there was some kind of chemical reaction with what could be left of the cleaner. Should I try to spray some water before using pledge?
2. I bought myself an MG Quanta to practice my paints. Could you tell me what type of coats is used on this model please? And this is the order I intend to use please tell me if it’s wrong :
Paint – Coat – Lines + Decals (should I use a product for decals, never did..) + Coat
1. I haven’t used Pledge myself, but have read, seen and heard a lot about it. It reacts like the Vallejo paints and it is known that those paints and solvents don’t mix well. It is strongly recommended to NOT use lacquer thinners or such to dilute or clean Vallejo paints and thus Pledge. It will turn the driver/binder of the paint into a goo substance. After some digging I concluded that the Tamiya Airbrush thinner contains a solvent based thinner, in other words, it’s a lacquer based thinning agent. After cleaning the airbrush with it, some residue will accumulate in the nozzle and around the cold parts of the inners of the airbrush. This is a normal occurrence in nature. There are a few options for this.
A. Wait a few minutes after you have cleaned the airbrush with the cleaning agent, then pull back the trigger again, of course with air going through the brush. You’ll see that the brush sprays out some cleaning agent, even a few minutes ago it seemed empty.
B. You could optionally do as written above, but you could do this step without it (still, as it’s no hassle I would just do it) and put some windex or rubbing alcohol in the brush, do a back flush (I just presume you know this technique, if not please let me know) to ensure all the residual cleaner is mixed with the fluid and spray it out. You could use water, but as this can contain chalk and other contamination please use it as a last alternative.
2. The recommended way of painting is just a little different, it goes:
Primer -> Paint -> Gloss Clear Coat -> Decals -> Gloss Clear or Panel Lining -> Final Clear Coat.
Why first decals and then lining you may ask. Well, some decals my go over a panel line. As in reality the decal is painted on, there will be a gap between the panels and one can not paint on a gap (if you can, stop the hobby and sell that procedure and become a millionaire, hahahaha). If you first do the decal and then the panel lining you can create the illusion there is indeed a gap between the panels.
This is why I recommend spraying a light gloss clear on top of the decals, so that it’s easy to clean up the excess paint from the lining process. If you haven’t done a enamel panel line wash (as I suggest using enamels to do this as the can be cleaned up without messing up the paint job) please let me know.
As for the colours on the OO Quant, there is a blue metallic, red metallic and gold. The white is replaced with a silver. Getting the exact colours will be very difficult. I can’t for the life of me remember where I’ve picked this up, but there seems to be an app which can give you te colour numbers, except for Mr Hobby, by scanning the picture or something. I just pick the colours I like, so for most of my builds I use the same pearl blue as is sprayed on my actual car.
You could go with a metallic colour you like, even if it comes in a rattle can, you can easily decant them and then spray them through your airbrush, I do this for most colours and it works great, better than using the cans themselves as you get a lot of less mileage due to over spray and the coats can be too thick resulting in clogging up the panel lines and softening recessed and raised detail.
Another way of doing it is spraying a silver or chrome and then covering it with a clear red, blue etc. The more coats you spray on, the darker the colour becomes, so you could add coats untill you get the result you like. Keep n mind though that after too much layers the colour may turn opaque, meaning the silver or chrome layer underneath it may not show through anymore…
I hope this will help yo out a bit. Should you need any more clarification or information please let me know.
Good luck and happy building!
Sorry, forgotten to answer another question, when applying decals, get some decal softner. There are various manufacturers selling this. You could optionally get the decal setter, this is a sort of adhesive and works great when the decals you got are old. If the decals are new, I don’t recommend using it as it makes the decals stick heavily to the surface making it hard to slide them in the perfect position.
The softner makes the decal soft and conform to irregular surfaces, for example, placing a decal on a rounded surface may result in the edges of the decal wrinkle, by “melting” the decal it gets rid of those nasty wrinkles. It also helps the decal “melt” into panel lines.
As how to use them:
Apply the Setter on the surface where the decal will be laced, place the decal on top and remove any excess water with a paper towel or a cotton bud/q-tip.
Again, the setter is optional. After having the decal applied and have getting rid of the excess water apply some Softner onto the decal. The decal will start to wrinkle a bit. Do not worry as this is a normal occurrence, it will straighten out once the fluid evaporates. Apply another coat if the decal is not conforming to the surface as wanted. The thicker the decal the more layers of the product you need.
Do not touch the decal after applying the sofner as the decal is very soft and fragile at this moment.
Wait for a few hours, preferably a day before applying a top coat.
Again, should you need any more advice, clarification and/or information, please let me know!
You’re very welcome, I’m blushing at the moment, haha.
At the moment I’m using Micro Sol and Micro Set by Microscale Industries. The Micro Sol is the one used for “melting” the decal. It’s rather weak and needs a few coats on an average decal. On thicker decals like ones from Tamiya or Bandai you might need three or four applications.
This is where the Japanese setting solutions come into play. The ones by Tamiya and Mr. Hobby are a lot more aggressive. They work fine, but keep in mind that these manufacturers sell lacquer based clear coats and they made their setting solution with that in mind, in other words, their setting solutions might effect weak clear coats like Future/Pledge or Vallejo acrylics.
Then there is a solution by Humbrol, but like their liquid mask and acrylic range, I’d stay away from that. Other product by them are fine though.
Not to make a secret out of this, as it seems like the trend is at the moment, or least that is how it looks to me. Took me some time to find out what works.
The Klear Kote by Alclad II is excellent! There is only one disadvantage, the stuff is enamel based. Most people think it’s a lacquer based product, but I did use it for the frame of the MG Hi-Nu Ver. Ka.. That stuff didn’t want to cure…. After a few days it still left finger prints when pressing pieces together. Then I looked at the bottle to see what I had missed. Sure enough, it read: ,Contains mineral spirits”. These are used to thin down enamels, so I had my answer. This was the gloss clear.
Used their matte clear and this dries and cures a lot better. After a few hours it can be handled, it is not fully cured though. This will take a day.
If wanting a mirror like finish, first spray a thick layer of the Gloss Klear Kote by Alclad (I know, but it’s really written like that). Let it dry for a day, then spray a lacquer based gloss clear on top of that. Like the Mr. Hobby GX or another lacquer based product. I decant Motip rattle cans a lot. They are rather expensive, but are of a great quality.
You may have heard of the types of paint and in which order you can apply them on top of each other.
Well, there is some truth to it, but there are loopholes (laughing manically) that they don’t want you to know, or haven’t figured out yet. I’ll give you the order from weakest type of paint to strongest. In the traditional way, you can’t put the stronger on the weaker one.
Water based acrylic (Vallejo, Humbrol, Revell) -> Alcohol based acrylics (Mr. Hobby Aqueous, Tamiya) -> Enamels (Revell, Humbrol, Tamiya, Testors, etc) -> Lacquers (Mr. Hobby, Model Master, Tamiya spray cans, Testors spray cans, etc)
I found that if you spray a lacquer clear coat on top of an alcohol based acrylic, the paint will start to crack. However, if you spray an enamel based clear on top of it, let it cure for one, preferably two days, then you can spray a lacquer on top of it. It is wise to not lay that layer on too thick, but a normal layer will work fine. If you let that dry for a few hours, you’re home free!!!
If you want to do a pin wash/panel line wash, an enamel can be, of course, placed on top of a lacquer, but even on a well cured acrylic, be it water based or alcohol based and be removed with an appropriate thinning agent (the manufacturers own thinning agent, lighter fluid, terpentine, white spirit or benzine).
As for Future/Pledge, I haven’t used it, so I can’t give you any personal recommendations. All I know is what I’ve read… Many like it in preparation for decals, panel lining and such. Most brush it on as it has great self leveling properties.
The cons are that the coat may turn yellow over time (yellow is the most dominant colour in our colour palet and will appear in less darker colours over time due to sun rays). It also is the weakest of the paint range as it’s a water based product, so keep that in mind when wanting to strengthen it by putting on another type of paint.
I believe this is it as far as I think of at the moment. May have left some things out, not willingly though. Of course, if there is anything unclear, please let me know!
As for the kind of topcoat on that Quant, for a metallic paint, there is always a gloss clear on top of it. There is no rule in saying that you have too, you can make a model in any way you like it, but the metallic particles in the paint shine, so naturally you would want them to be emphasized. This can be done with a gloss clear. See it as a paint job on a car.
I typically use gloss on all my kits, as I like them to look like they are fresh from the factory. Also, the suits I build are protagonist suits (mostly) and those suits are most of the time well taken care of by maintenance crews.
I build a Zaku II a few weeks back and it was themed as forgotten outpost by Zeon forces suit, which saw no maintenance as there where no available parts and such.
This was my first weathered model and I used a matte clear on it. Again, look at it like a vehicle. If it’s washed frequently, it’ll shine. But when there is a long period with bad weather or just not washed, dust, dirt and grime will start to accumulate on the paint and it will start to look dull.
A semi gloss can be looked at as a time in between that process. Most builders prefer this look. There is a big advantage in building your kit with a matte or semi gloss clear coat. All the imperfections won’t show. For example, when putting decals on a model, no matter how thin te decals are, now matter how much softner you put on it, the outlines of them will always be visible with only one coat of a gloss clear. Even a few coats will render them be visible. How to get rid of them you might ask? Four or five coats, sand those coats down, making sure not to get to the decal and paint itself and then spray a final coat on top of it. The decals will now appear like they are painted on.
Little flaws in the paint, like dust particles also will be nearly invisible with a matte or semi gloss finish.
It all comes down to your personal preference which finish you use as long as you use a gloss for the decal stage and panel lining stage. There is no wrong way in building your models, only when you build it not to YOUR liking, but because of what some community dictates you to build it. I know a few builder (some even well known) who got frowned upon for not building according to the standards….. 🙁
Please don’t let opinions of other influence your work. A model is to satisfactory when you like it. Others should appreciate it for what it is.
That said, again, please build your models like you want them to be! Testing your colours and such on spoons is a great way in searching and achieving the results you are looking for, big thumbs up!!!
If you need any more advise, information or clarification on the hobby, please let me know. There are no stupid questions except for the ones that aren’t asked!
Good luck and happy building!