Thursday 24 July 2014

Masking & painting - Repeat until done

I decided early in the build not to use the provided decals for the black and red stripes, because I do not trust these big decals to sit well and conform to the needed curves. Also, some of the red was not provided in decal-form, meaning I would be painting some part of it anyway. It is nearly impossible to find the same shade of red in paint as on the decal, so I decided to paint all of it. It would be a good lesson in masking.

After masking for the red zone, I airbrushed matte varnish against the edge of the tape. This is just a little trick to prevent paint from bleeding underneath the tape. You basically fill all the spots that WOULD bleed with transparent varnish. This doesn't work 100% all the time, but reduces the amount of cleanup a lot.

I needed 11 layers of the red paint, before the difference between the underlying grey and green were no longer discernible. In retrospect, I should have started with a light grey layer, so the red would be covering well with fewer layers. To the last layer, I added 50% of gloss varnish, in hopes of achieving a smoother finish. I did the same with the black.

After removing the tape, a few faults can be spotted, that will need to be touched up, but the result is good.
I still make the mistake of spraying too much paint sometimes. It's ever an exercise in patience to spray thin layers and wait until adding the next one. The urge to pull back on the trigger and spray away is hard to resist sometimes. Especially against the edge of the tape, this is dangerous and only results in more cleanup, if only I could resist wanting to go too fast.

Next up :

  • anti-glare in front of the cockpit
  • painting the bottom black, then varnish the whole model
  • stretching sprue for the forward antenna's
  • adding antennas on the side and finding some thread to rig them with
  • adding the wheels so it can finally stand upright without me constantly breaking off the searchlight
  • decals
  • (slight) weathering?

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