Saturday, 18 May 2013

Trying new things and new brands

Because my experiments with Vallejo varnish (especially the glossy one) are far from good, I decided to get some info on other brands. I had to pick up new paint anyway and was hoping the storekeeper would have some experience, which - turns out - he had. This may seem logical, but some hobbyshops (especially the larger ones) have cashiers who know nothing.
  • For the regular varnish, to protect the painted model, apply decals, then seal in those decals, he recommended Alclad 2 lacquer (semi-matt). It's not water-based, so you need a lacquer-thinner to clear your airbrush afterwards and it smells a lot more pungent than acrylic paint of course.
  • He didn't have the glossy one in stock, but - since I''m experimenting with other brands - I took the Tamiya X-22. According to online references it takes weeks to dry and many people don't like it, but the trick seems to be to thin it heavily with lacquer thinner, even though it's not the logical choice.
    (I'll try it soon)
  • I want the Abrams to look dusty, but not too much, so I enquired for that also and he suggested a wash from AK Interactive. They have a range washes and dry pigments, depending on how thick you want to create the effect.
From left to right, top to bottom : AK Interactive Africa dust effect (wash) + white spirit, Humbrol maskol (liquid masking, supposedly 10 times better than Vallejo's), Tamiya X-22 gloss clear, Alclad 2 semi-matt lacquer + Tamiya lacquer thinner and the reason I went to the shop in the first place : Olive drab and Insignia blue.

I've tested the Alclad lacquer right away on the Abrams and, at first sight, the results are very promising. I used it straight from the bottle, sprays nice and even. Extra bonus : no tip-dry. Slight disadvantage : the smell, so wear a mask and ventilate well.

I used it on the submarine as well. Pictures soon.

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