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How shiny should shiny be?


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Anyone who's seen a modern Sprint Cup car up close can tell you they look a lot better on TV than they do "in the flesh" and their finishes are nowhere close to the "mirror gloss" variety. Not only that, but, the graphics are printed on vinyl and have a MUCH different sheen than the cars' painted surfaces (this doesn't apply so much on cars that use full-body vinyl wraps.)

OMG Ken, thanks for saying this but watch out! I've been saying the exact same thing for years and getting nothing but grief for it. I've been told in no uncertain terms that I didn't know what I was talking about by guys who've never been any closer to a race car than their TV set! :lol:

I guess 20+ years in NASCAR garages from Riverside to Martinsville didn't teach me a thing! B)

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Getting back to the original Question, how shiny should shiny be..... I would say it depends on what year & type of build the model is suppose to replicate, and if you are a "Trophy Hunter" ; or just someone simply building for the fun of it......I've seen rattle can paint jobs I would definitely choose over so called "Wicked Shiny Urethane Paint jobs" ( which most of the time, obscure every possible detail; obliterate door & trunk lines & just look like crud ) .....personally, I think the whole competitive aspect of the hobby is annoying, & the cause of alot of guys to be intimidated & apprehensive; I say build for fun & totally agree with Harry's comment......this type of dialogue is Crusial to this & other Forums; as well as our great hobby.

Edited by Krazy Rick
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Well guys, as the thread starter I want to say that at no time I regret asking the original question in reference to this topic. It has done exactly what I wanted, well, better yet, it has exceeded by miles what I wanted to actually hear from everyone here.

It was by no means my intention to make people deviate from the subject or to stir controversy simply by asking what I still consider to be a legitimate question. I say it and I will repeat it, to my understanding, there is nothing closer to simulating a real paint on a model than to actually follow the same steps you would on a 1/1 car.

I am by no means a professional painter, again, I am more of a collector and I consider myself to have a very keen eye when it comes to scale realism. You can choose the Lacquer or Urethane route you want and we can be here discussing the subject for the next 100 years but the truth is that you cannot beat true scale realism simply by dumping paint on a model, specially that much paint when using Urethane. You must always remember that you are working in scale. Even the smallest tip on an airbrush is out of scale when working on a model, that's why I believe so much on the wetsanding methods used by 1/1 cars and models for that matter.

Again, I am not picking on the "urethane" guys or their talent, i really admire the shiny paintjobs but when it comes to deciding which one looks more real, well, you know how I feel. The simple truth is that I brought this subject to the table, it was and will continue to be discussed and I am more than happy that we have and will continue to have diverse opinions on the subject. That's exactly why I love this place.

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Well guys, as the thread starter I want to say that at no time I regret asking the original question in reference to this topic. It has done exactly what I wanted, well, better yet, it has exceeded by miles what I wanted to actually hear from everyone here.

It was by no means my intention to make people deviate from the subject or to stir controversy simply by asking what I still consider to be a legitimate question. I say it and I will repeat it, to my understanding, there is nothing closer to simulating a real paint on a model than to actually follow the same steps you would on a 1/1 car.

I am by no means a professional painter, again, I am more of a collector and I consider myself to have a very keen eye when it comes to scale realism. You can choose the Lacquer or Urethane route you want and we can be here discussing the subject for the next 100 years but the truth is that you cannot beat true scale realism simply by dumping paint on a model, specially that much paint when using Urethane. You must always remember that you are working in scale. Even the smallest tip on an airbrush is out of scale when working on a model, that's why I believe so much on the wetsanding methods used by 1/1 cars and models for that matter.

Again, I am not picking on the "urethane" guys or their talent, i really admire the shiny paintjobs but when it comes to deciding which one looks more real, well, you know how I feel. The simple truth is that I brought this subject to the table, it was and will continue to be discussed and I am more than happy that we have and will continue to have diverse opinions on the subject. That's exactly why I love this place.

Brother, couldn't have said it better!
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For one urethane maybe toxic but you or no one can tell me that the ###### Tamiya paint or even testers is not a toxic specialy when it blows out of the can at 75psi into the air. That ###### will get you just as sick if not worse because its in a can then using Urethane... Using an airbrush and shoot it at 12psi and as small as a model car body is a lot different then shooting a hood or any thing of 1:1. The air and urethane ratio is a lot less and if you have a paint booth it cuts it down even more. You can controal the air and how much of it comes out of the airbrush compare to using any can type paint.

Sorry but that deal of Urethane should only be sold to people that has a permit is ######!

Now for the shine! In the mid 80s the true Trailer queen cars was having any where between 10 to 15 coats of clear on them go back and read some of the magazine on how they did there paint jobs! They achive the same doing it this way as we do now only doing 1 coat of urethane. If you want to build a trailer queen car of today then use urethane, Also I think a lot of people forget of today that 90% of the 30s cars are not steel, They are fiberglass cars and with paint lay'ed down right and clear coated and wet sanded with any clear coat you will get the same afect!

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I have never agreed with this philosophy on the hobby.

......the finish MUST match what the real car would've or should've had.

So no, I don't believe you should shine it up how you want it.

".....what the real car would've or SHOULD'VE had". ???? Wha? "Should've had"? ....This is wrong on many levels.

Wow. If I thought this way, I'd just give up altogether. I'm sure that we ALL try and replicate 1:1 cars as close as we can, and we improve our skills one kit at a time. In the end, we should build for OURSELVES, and NOT to impress the critics. If you're simply trying to impress someone else, you're completely missing what makes our hobby so special to begin with.

Mike

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For one urethane maybe toxic but you or no one can tell me that the ###### Tamiya paint or even testers is not a toxic specialy when it blows out of the can at 75psi into the air. That ###### will get you just as sick if not worse because its in a can then using Urethane... Using an airbrush and shoot it at 12psi and as small as a model car body is a lot different then shooting a hood or any thing of 1:1. The air and urethane ratio is a lot less and if you have a paint booth it cuts it down even more. You can controal the air and how much of it comes out of the airbrush compare to using any can type paint.

Sorry but that deal of Urethane should only be sold to people that has a permit is ######!

Now for the shine! In the mid 80s the true Trailer queen cars was having any where between 10 to 15 coats of clear on them go back and read some of the magazine on how they did there paint jobs! They achive the same doing it this way as we do now only doing 1 coat of urethane. If you want to build a trailer queen car of today then use urethane, Also I think a lot of people forget of today that 90% of the 30s cars are not steel, They are fiberglass cars and with paint lay'ed down right and clear coated and wet sanded with any clear coat you will get the same afect!

As I said previously, only professionals should be handling urethane; in the wrong hands irreversible untold damage can occur :unsure:
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I have been admiring some of the paintjobs done in some of the models here and other forums and I think I have come down to one conclusion or better yet, question. How shiny should shiny be? I ask this because I have seen some cars that are just way too shiny to the point where they look like diecast or others in which the paint has been dumped on so heavily that even the panel lines have dissapeared.

I have also seen that the ones with the most shine are the ones with Urethane finishes, to me I think those are the ones that look the shiniest but also the most toyish. What do you guys think?

For me, there is a simple answer. I always try and arrive at a finish that is as thin as possible, AND as smooth and glossy as possible. IF you accomplish all three in the same paint job, you've nailed it! IT'S IN THE APPLICATION, fellas!!!!

To start with, urethane IS the standard modern finish for 1:1 automobiles. MOST classic car and musclecar restorations include urethane as a final topcoat. Many 1:1 automotive paint suppliers/jobbers won't even mix lacquer these days.

Like most of you that have been building model cars for some time, I started out using enamels. Me personally, I've just never been happy with enamels. After years of frustration, I eventually moved on to lacquers - acrylic and nitrocellulose-based, and STILL like using them for main-body base coats, interiors, engines, chassis, etc. Still, lacquers are fragile and temperamental, and the hardened finish can check and crack over time (ask me how I know).

I'd been using urethanes on 1:1 motorcycles and guitars for years, and recently moved on to using 2-part acrylic urethane clear over lacquer and/or urethane base coats for my model car bodies, pretty much exclusively. I absolutely agree though, MOST urethane clear paint jobs are entirely too thick, and obscure panel separation lines and detail. THOSE are the paint jobs that give urethane a bad name. While my first attempts at spraying model car bodies with urethane were weak at best, it took some time to find the perfect balance of sprayable viscosity, airbrush pressure(s), final film thickness, and overall gloss.

All of this having been said, I feel that I've finally sorted things out and I'm able to spray a thin, smooth, glossy finish that needs very little sanding or buffing. Keep in mind, there are supplemental additives available that will help you to make urethane work for YOU. Urethanes and activators are available in various cure rates, and reducers are available to thin urethanes down to proper scale viscosity and final film thickness.

Just like anything else, you need to do your homework, practice, practice, practice, and I'm sure that you'll find that urethane simply IS the proper finish for model cars. After all, it IS the 1:1 automotive industry standard finish, and that IS the finish you're trying to replicate, correct??

Just my 2 cents!

Mike

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I've been Custom painting for 35+ years....Urethane IS NOT The stuff to use for models.....never mind the look of it ( if you happen to like it ;) ) .....From a safety standpoint, as the Blues man Mark pointed out.....It Is DEADLY...A FULL SUIT IS USED BY PROS, INCLUDING GLOVES .....and I'm pretty sure; less than 1% of those using it within the hobby have a professional facility within their house..& follow proper procedure ....I wonder how many are using a proper respirator & have an adequate ventilation system setup .....How many are using this stuff in a SEALED area? .... If ALL these steps are not taken into consideration when using this TOXIC CHEMICAL; then You are most likely not only exposing yourself to this stuff, BUT also exposing anyone else who happens to reside in that house; to DANGEROUS FUMES..And your only fooling yourself if you think it's not...One coat, or more coats;the stuff is GLOP......Ya, sure it's "Nice & Shiny", but If your working with 1/25 models & trying to replicate 1:1 cars.....this IS NOT the stuff to use. :unsure:;):unsure:

Edited by Krazy Rick
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I wanted to address this part of the post:

It takes more work to get an accurate, exact & in scale paint job on a model than it does to bury it in clear costs to make it ultra shiny. All one is risking there is the chance of getting a run in the paint or clear as it gets piled on more & more. Proper wet sanding, polishing & striking the right balance between just shiny enough to be realistic in scale & accurate to the way it should appear takes much more work.

Just as Rick said, such thick, "poured on" paint jobs do usually obscure details & ruin panel lines, making the entire model often look toyish, like a 1/25 scale model with a 1/1 paint job, (in reference to scale differences), on it. It might be shiny, but the effect of scale realism & creating a replica, (even if it's not a replica of an actual 1/1 car), goes out the window.

To each their own & build for yourself yes, but let's make sure that we're being accurate in espousing our beliefs, & get the facts straight.

B)

that wasnt my point though, i never said caked on clear, i have seen amazing models with shiney paint jobs that look s rich yet arent cakes with clear, i dont think that anybody builds wrong yet some people her are makeing it sou like "if you dont make it real then you building it wrong" no if you are haveing fun and you are pleased with how your model looks your doing it right and thats all that matters

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As I said previously, only professionals should be handling urethane; in the wrong hands irreversible untold damage can occur B)

yeah and same goes for cars and bicycles and heck friken pencils, but lets only let professionals handle pencils because someone could get stabbed in the eye and go blind, come on dude get real

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If all we do here is pat each other on the back and sing kum-baya... what the heck is the point???

And I'm sad to report that this is going on right now on this board.

A model was posted in "Under Glass" last night that has some obvious problems with the basics and some other, uh, less than the best work.

This morning there is nothing but praise in the comments. B)

I'm dying to point out to the builder how that model could be improved but, unfortunately, I'm not the most tactful guy I know so I hesitate to speak up.

But at least I'm not going to blow sunshine up this guy's skirt and tell him did a great job like some are doing.

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yeah and same goes for cars and bicycles and heck friken pencils, but lets only let professionals handle pencils because someone could get stabbed in the eye and go blind, come on dude get real

Um..I'll refrain from referring to you as "Dude", "Sport", "Homey" ....or anything else along these lines.. B) ...How about I just Call you "Curtis" & you call me "Rick" :rolleyes::rolleyes: no disrespect intended; BUT ....Honestly "Curtis".....I find your logic and "comparison attempt", slightly amusing; but mostly ridiculous & pathetic :rolleyes: DON'T take just Marks, or my word for it, please call a manufacturer of this stuff , tell them your using it in a house & see what they say; :rolleyes: ...then ......call a couple doctors; particularly a neurologist & see what they have to say :rolleyes: ...... This is a VERY Serious Subject & should be discussed intelligently; We can only point out the danger of improper use; we're not trying to take the fun of the hobby away; just trying to make it a bit safer for everyone.....whether anyone chooses to take this advise; or not....is entirely up to the individual... Mark & myself are trying to point out ( Who happen to be Pro Painters, with many years experience) , is the FACT; that these two particular chemicals; when combined......make a DEADLY cocktail ...that must be respected when used; All Manufacturers that Produce it, clearly state on the label ; if certain procedure isn't followed....you are risking not only your own health; but anyone who comes in contact with it ( which I consider avoidable neglect ) The Vapour is Deadly Toxic, It will effect The Kidney & Liver, permanent nerve damage & respiratory damage ......The Purpose of the Full Paint Suit, which Mark mentioned earlier.....is to protect the skin.....certain chemicals ( such as this stuff ) ; tend to penetrate without it's use....and will cause NERVE DAMAGE ..... A proper Dual cartridge mask obviously protects the mouth & nose area; membranes/breathing etc, Eye protection is a must ..it WILL DAMAGE THE EYES ........Also, when it is applied Professionally....it is used in a paint both which is setup specifically for application....it is a sealed environment; contamination is contained. I am merely stating FACTS, this IS NOT a personal attack; on you....or anyone else using it; I am merely stating that ALL safety steps should be taken.....Stated on Urethane Containers .... IT SAYS .......This Product should be used by Professionals Only .... For industrial use only by Professional,TRAINED Personnel....It's on there FOR A REASON B) .....the FACT is, that this stuff is NASTY,NASTY, NASTY !!! There's lots of different paint choices out there, ALOT SAFER than the Urethane; that will give you a decent finish...Ya..it's "Shiny" :blink: I very much doubt if modellers will stop using it, immediatley after reading our discussion here; but at least they may think twice about using it safely.......and ask themselves ..... is it really worth all the risk to get that shine? B)<_< Edited by Krazy Rick
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yeah and same goes for cars and bicycles and heck friken pencils, but lets only let professionals handle pencils because someone could get stabbed in the eye and go blind, come on dude get real

I have to line up in step with Rick on this one. Cars, bicycles, and yes, even "fricken pencils" can and are abused and cause injuries every day. That doesn't mean that every other product in the world should be used by those who don't have the knowledge or training to use them properly and safely. As Rick points out, urethane paints are (not can be, not may be, but ARE) deadly when used improperly. They are designed for use by professionals that know what they're doing.

In all honesty I don't see the point in using the stuff on model cars at all. I've been painting model cars for a little over 50 years with Testors brand hobby paints almost exclusively. It's easy to use, relatively safe, and it gives perfectly acceptable results.

Why take any chances on using dangerous stuff. It just ain't worth it for a model car.

Listen to Rick, he knows what he's talking about.

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I'm glad that youy guys are posting the specific hazards associated with using urethanes. That is truly appreciated, and should really be a separate post altogether, complete with a 'sticky'. Seriously.

A lot of the other muckity muck and mumbo jumbo is a bit over the top, but that's to be expected. The original poster asked for "Too Shiny?" opinions, and that's exactly what he's getting - opinions. Me, I like shiny, and I'll continue to reduce and apply my properly prepared urethanes to achieve it.

Folks, be careful, READ the precautions and/or tech sheets, and follow safety protocol, REGARDLESS of which finish you use. We want you here for a long time!

Mike

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peripheral posters

Now that one I'm writing down.

As for seeing "flawed" work , why not pm or email the builder, in private, with your tips/advice...etc.

This allows you to offer help to improve their skills while at the same time not embarrassing them in front of everybody else.

If they listen, then you have made a good friend and helped someone be a better builder.

If they turn a deaf ear, then you have the satisfaction of knowing you tried to help.

As for shiny, I think it depends on what you want.

If you want to duplicate the real 1:1 car, then by all means research it and get it as close to real as possible.

If you want to build a nice model car, and enjoy the gloss/glaze, then by all means do that.

There is a big difference between suggesting something to someone or talking down to them with an inflated ego,

and we all can agree that stuff like that happens a lot.

In many ways, the internet is hurting the hobby more than it helps.

Edited by Gary66
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Back to the subject of urethanes for a moment...

There are all those scary warnings on the product label for a reason! Urethane paint is nasty stuff that can cause harm when not handled with the appropriate precautions.

Of course, ultimately we all make our own decisions, and if someone wants to use urethane paint on a model without the proper precautions and equipment, that's their right and their call... but to know the facts about the stuff before you dive in is a good thing, isn't it? Doesn't knowing the facts before you decide make for an informed decision?

Instead of ripping the guys who are trying to tell you the facts about the stuff, maybe you should take what they are telling you seriously and think about whether or not the risks and potential harm that urethanes can cause are worth it to you.

Like I said, ultimately it's your decision... but having the facts before you decide is a good thing.

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