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I’ve been struggling to replicate clear-red and clear-amber tints on tail lamps. I love it when kit manufacturers mould these parts in the correct colours, but all too often you get given a clear plastic part. I’ve always used a Humberol clear red and amber paint, but I’m really not getting the results I want. 
Can anyone recommend a better way?

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I usually use Tamiya clear paints (which I assume are very similar to Humbrol clears). Sometimes I have to apply more than one coat. I have the Humbrom paints too, but I havent' tried them (since Tamiya paints work fine for me). What is the specific problem?

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3 hours ago, peteski said:

I usually use Tamiya clear paints (which I assume are very similar to Humbrol clears). Sometimes I have to apply more than one coat. I have the Humbrom paints too, but I havent' tried them (since Tamiya paints work fine for me). What is the specific problem?

The humbrol clears are celulose paints (as I found out after destroying my paint brush in the humbrol thinners)

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I don't know if you have Sharpie pens in the UK but I'm sure that there must be an equivalent of some sort.

81tCv2Gx39L._AC_SL1500_.jpg.a017929de7a81e2f58c77558822a91d8.jpg

In a pinch, I sometimes use them to color clear lenses. The best example that comes to mind is these lenses that I modified years ago. They were cast as a single red lens with no accommodation for the reversing light part of the lens. What I did what was cut off the offending part and attach a clear piece on which drew in the red details with a fine-point Sharpie pen. I believe this is when I first hit on the idea of using a marker in this fashion.

1045055775_Robo04_00.jpg.5f21bce3079463e9b677b9b943ed4cbf.jpg

 

I hope you find this helpful. 

Best Regards,

David G.

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4 hours ago, stitchdup said:

The humbrol clears are celulose paints (as I found out after destroying my paint brush in the humbrol thinners)

I believe that "Cellulose paint" is an European colloquial term meaning organic-solvent based (lacquer?) paints (like Accu-Paint, Tru-Color, Zero, MCW paints, or any of the automotive touch-up paints).  Humbrol is AFAIK also organic-solvent based enamel paint (similar to Testors PLA enamels).  Are you saying that Humbrol clears use different chemistry?  Are they "hotter" than standsard Humbrol paints?

Why would that destroy brushes?  I almost exclusively use organic-solvent based "stinky"  paints, and clean my brushes with lacquer thinner or acetone. I have newer "ruined" a brush. Most  of my brushes are 20-30 years old.  I do admit that I use my airbrush for as many painting tasks as I can (often more than average modeler), but my paint brushes still get a fair amount of use.

 

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3 minutes ago, peteski said:

I believe that "Cellulose paint" is an European colloquial term meaning organic-solvent based (lacquer?) paints (like Accu-Paint, Tru-Color, Zero, MCW paints, or any of the automotive touch-up paints).  Humbrol is AFAIK also organic-solvent based enamel paint (similar to Testors PLA enamels).  Are you saying that Humbrol clears use different chemistry?  Are they "hotter" than standsard Humbrol paints?

Why would that destroy brushes?  I almost exclusively use organic-solvent based "stinky"  paints, and clean my brushes with lacquer thinner or acetone. I have newer "ruined" a brush. Most  of my brushes are 20-30 years old.  I do admit that I use my airbrush for as many painting tasks as I can (often more than average modeler), but my paint brushes still get a fair amount of use.

 

I used the humbrol enamel thinners and the paint turned to rubber on them. my own fault for not reading the tin but i assumed it was enamel since the tins are the same

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5 minutes ago, stitchdup said:

I used the humbrol enamel thinners and the paint turned to rubber on them. my own fault for not reading the tin but i assumed it was enamel since the tins are the same

So your brushes simply gummed up with paint? Ok, that makes more sense now,  As I read it, your earlier post seemed to imply to me that Humbrol thinner itself ruined your brushes.

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On 2/19/2021 at 8:05 AM, peteski said:

I usually use Tamiya clear paints (which I assume are very similar to Humbrol clears). Sometimes I have to apply more than one coat. I have the Humbrom paints too, but I havent' tried them (since Tamiya paints work fine for me). What is the specific problem?

The Humbrol paint is just awful. Its not an enamel, and it behaves strangely. Its very stringy and simply not red enough. I've put 3 coats on and the red just accumulates in certain areas and pulls away from sharp edges. The tail lamps still look mostly clear. If I start using a 4th and 5th coat the paint layer thickness will begin to impact the fit of the parts.

On 2/19/2021 at 11:08 AM, GeeBee said:

I've been using Tamiya clear acrylic to do all my light lenses, airbrushed @ around 15 psi, seems to work for me. 

 

20210219_110550.jpg

20210219_110610.jpg

Thanks for sharing those images. I'm off to buy some Tamiya clear-red and clear-amber now. Thanks for the tip.

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Another vote for Tamiya clear red and clear orange. You may have to lay on a couple heavy coats to get the colour saturation you want. I have been using these in acrylic, but I am anxious to try Tamiya's lacquer version of these colours.

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