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This one is really kicking my butt. Everything that can go wrong seemingly has, especially as far as paint is concerned. This is my first time working with Zero Paints and i know everybody raves about these people but honestly ive had much better experiences just using rattle cans. Still, this paint is expensive so im not going to let it beat me, but for now this is where i am so far:

The kit:
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The body and getting rid of the mould seams:

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Body prepped and primed:
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Everything was going smoothly as normal until...
My nemesis:
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Looks ok right? Well not really...
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For some reason you can still see an issue with the moulding of the body itself...im not sure how these swirls are visible through the primer and paint layer:
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But thats not the only problem....look at the weird texture i have from the paint itself:
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Hard to see in the photos but there are these circular spirals in the paint, most visible where the door meets the front wing:
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I think this was my fault, as I think I must have put the paint on too thick too quickly, so time to strip and start again I guess...

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Re-primed and prepped for round two:

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But thats not where the story ends.
I attempted to do the paint a second time, making sure to take things slower with thinner coats (compressor at the recommended PSI, airbrush was set up correctly etc), but once again the paint looked like BLAH_BLAH_BLAH_BLAH and showed up every last minor imperfection in my primer layer, which usually isn't a problem as I usually put my paint on nice and thick (without sacrificing detail) which usually fills in all the tiny imperfections, but because you have to put this stuff on in such thin coats that wasn't happening...you'd think the primer wasn't prepped properly, however I did everything I normally do (primer, guide coat, wet sand to a smooth finish etc) but it still looked like BLAH_BLAH_BLAH_BLAH.
I dont have pictures of this as I was too upset and annoyed so I forgot to take any.
So I stripped it down for a second time and I'm currently trying to figure out what I should do next.
I have a plan, but whether it will work remains to be seen.

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Posted (edited)

I'm not a pro painter but maybe I can help. First, Zero paints I believe are lacquer based so you must use an automotive quick drying primer. Looking at your pictures it looks to me the paint attacked the primer. When I use a different name brand paint I take a plastic spoon, sand, prime and paint it as a test. Secondly, did you wash the parts before priming to rid the plastic of the mold release agent the manufacture uses. I use Dawn dish liquid flor this.  Same thing after striping the paint you must wash and rinse throughly. Hope to help

Edited by Penguins87

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1 hour ago, Penguins87 said:

I'm not a pro painter but maybe I can help. First, Zero paints I believe are lacquer based so you must use an automotive quick drying primer. Looking at your pictures it looks to me the paint attacked the primer. When I use a different name brand paint I take a plastic spoon, sand, prime and paint it as a test. Secondly, did you wash the parts before priming to rid the plastic of the mold release agent the manufacture uses. I use Dawn dish liquid flor this.  Same thing after striping the paint you must wash and rinse throughly. Hope to help

Hi. I did everything you mentioned, and I always use automotive primers and paints so I'm not really sure what happened. I know that the first time it was definitely my fault going too heavy with the paint too quickly, but I can't figure out what happened the second time.

I'm going to try once more and this time I'm going to base it up with a thick coat (without losing details) of automotive paint first which will hopefully seal the primer layer and fill in any micro scratches and imperfections in the primer that I may have missed and give me a perfectly smooth surface to put the zero paint over.

If that doesn't work, I'll just give up on trying to use zero and just go with some generic 2k car paint instead.

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I feel your pain. Literally the same thing happened to me with the exact same kit. I wonder perhaps (could be a coincidence) but it could be an actual bad batch of PS plastic from Tamiya that reacts badly to hotter automotive paints. I was using Automotive primer and topcoat colour and had the exact same thing happen. the paint forms a ring-like pattern from one point and spreads. It was really annoying, cause even after clear coat and wet sanding and polishing it didn't come out, even though the clear coat was perfectly level. here are a couple pics of mine.

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1 hour ago, Nataan92 said:

I feel your pain. Literally the same thing happened to me with the exact same kit. I wonder perhaps (could be a coincidence) but it could be an actual bad batch of PS plastic from Tamiya that reacts badly to hotter automotive paints. I was using Automotive primer and topcoat colour and had the exact same thing happen. the paint forms a ring-like pattern from one point and spreads. It was really annoying, cause even after clear coat and wet sanding and polishing it didn't come out, even though the clear coat was perfectly level. here are a couple pics of mine.

image.png.613db88c2333879029383c6e19ab5aa9.pngimage.png.2f8221ceecd46b8469193f8d963a71dd.pngimage.png.84246a0aa4f1ea1aae3557a34574eed8.png

Wow so it's not just me then?! Dude that's exactly the same issue! Kinda freaky that it was on the same kit though lol.

But yeah, commiserations I totally understand your pain. Honestly it could definitely be the kit because these z-tune skylines are moulded in that grey plastic and tamiya kits are usually moulded in white plastic so there could be something there.

However in my experience if you seal something with primer and basecoats it shouldn't effect the top coat at all, as it doesn't penetrate through the other layers, that's the point in sealing things afterall.

So yeah I reckon it's the paint itself. It doesn't react well to heavy wet coats, which is why I've reprimed and added a thick smooth black base to mine which will highlight any imperfections that I can fix before applying a new layer of the zero z-tune paint, giving me a glass smooth surface to apply very light coats to which will hopefully avoid this reaction issue and give me a good finish that I can actually live with lol

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It's definitely the paint. That happens with Duplicolor all the time. You can try duplicolor primer sealer and see if that helps. Otherwise I try a different brand of paint.

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We have success!

First the silver, took three coats and I waited with bated breath after each one to see if it would react again
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After I was certain nothing was going to react again I went for the final push and lacquered it. I was afraid this might cause further issues, since the paint has been so unpredictable so far I was expecting it to also react with whatever lacquer I put over it...thankfully that wasn't the case:
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Its been an hour and so far nothing has reacted so I think I have solved the issue.
What I did was after I had stripped the body after the last failure I primed the body 3 times, wet sanding between each layer to get everything as smooth as possible.

I then sprayed everything in gloss black, as black shows up every last imperfection and makes it easy to spot any issues. I found a few scratch marks left over from sanding down the seam lines that I didn't spot during the priming phase (the gloss black trick was great for this), so I sanded them down with 1500 grit wet and dry sand paper and then added another coat of black. 

Eventually after 3 coats I had a flawless, glass like black finish which I then wet sanded down to a matt finish with 1500 and 2500 grit wet and dry sand paper.
I then added the silver in very very fine, light but consistent coats. It took around three coats in the end.
I dusted the paint on so I didn't go in lines from side to side like you would normally paint something. This process is exactly the same way I used to apply Alclad chrome lacquers and it worked perfectly. The only difference being that the black base was matt instead of gloss which you need with Alclad chrome to get that shiny chrome finish.

So long story short, base your model up in gloss black after priming, fix all the flaws until you have a perfectly smooth finish, wet sand everything with fine grit sandpaper then apply the silver in light dusty coats and then wait around 20 minutes before spraying your lacquer.
 

Thankfully despite all these various stages and coats of primer and paint and lacquer detail still remains pretty sharp so I'm very happy with the result.

Not sure i'll be using zero paints again anytime soon, but its good to know I can avoid any potential future issues with their products if I do.

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Some more work done on this. Painted and built up the majority of the chassis, once I add the front struts and drive shafts i'll mount the poly caps and brake discs then move on to the interior tub, i'll probably start polishing the bodywork soon too.

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Im really happy with the rear coil-overs, fronts look the same too just having taken photos of them yet. Its the little things... :)

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Hmm....not too happy. I have attempted to airbrush some heat staining on the exhaust, but it looks kinda lame. It looks more like bruised flesh than anything lol.
I'll be repainting this in just plain old silver for now, obviously my airbrushing skills need some serious work.
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I had similar problem with Tamiya R33 Gtr Vspec

If you look closely for chassis, you can see reaction with paint and plastic.. I stripped paint and used differend type of paint, came out good.. Lucky me, i did not use that "hot" paint for body and it came out perfect as i can do.. 

I used Tamiya weathering set D for exhaust.. Just painted them with silver and brushed Burnt blue and red here and there.. ;)
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Keep up good work.. I have this same R34 kit waiting for ideas.. It will have much cleaner look than my R33 :D

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11 minutes ago, Janne Herajärvi said:

I had similar problem with Tamiya R33 Gtr Vspec

If you look closely for chassis, you can see reaction with paint and plastic.. I stripped paint and used differend type of paint, came out good.. Lucky me, i did not use that "hot" paint for body and it came out perfect as i can do.. 

I used Tamiya weathering set D for exhaust.. Just painted them with silver and brushed Burnt blue and red here and there.. ;)
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Keep up good work.. I have this same R34 kit waiting for ideas.. It will have much cleaner look than my R33 :D

I was also going to suggest the Tamiya D set. Very easy to use and gives good results.

Thanks for detailing the problem you had with the paint. I'm fairly new to airbrushing and tips like these are immensely useful.

 I especially like the idea of using gloss black, to locate flaws.

Top marks for persistence! The finished product will be even more appreciated, thanks to adversity.

And yes, those coil springs look fab!

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