Jump to content
Site Software Upgraded ×
Model Cars Magazine Forum

Dave G.

  • Posts

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Posts posted by Dave G.

  1. 11 hours ago, Monty said:

    In one of my early posts above I kind of explain that.  I'm just not a big fan of acrylics and don't have much experience with lacquers.  I've used enamels for almost all of my model building since I started the hobby, so suffice it to say it's a comfort zone thing. 

    Monty, If you're airbrushing enamels, I think you will find yourself just as comfortable with Tamiya LP Lacquers. Thin them with Mr Leveling thinner around  50/50. They go on beautifully, gloss paints retain full gloss when dry and dry time is minutes not days or weeks. Maybe give them a try and see for yourself. Try the gloss black on some old Model A fenders or something, amazing. My first test of the stuff was the black on 34 Ford pickup fenders. I shoot this stuff with a Paasche H, thinned like that I use around 18 psi.

    You can also use the Tamiya LT to thin them, just after your last coat load whatever paint is left in your cup with thinner ( even medium dry hardware store LT will work)and blow that right over the finish before dry, it will totally level right out. Just with Mr Leveling thinner you don't need that. Anyway, the nice thing about these lacquers is it's about impossible to make them run. Also any lingering odor is gone within a half hour or so. Any over spray melts right into the previous coat too.

    • Like 1
  2. Nah, it's simple if you don't do a deep dive: Nitro lacquer which is made from tree resins as the base. And synthetic which is plastic resin or acrylic. That's in the base. I just never thought of acrylic lacquer primers but I've shot plenty of acrylic lacquer colors in automotive refinishing and nitro in wood working.. Now I know. But I have no interest in molecular stuff, my brain is clogged up enough after 73 years of this world.

    What boggles my mind ( and it can stay that way) is water solvable oil paints, you can use linseed oil or water. And it's water clean up. Stranger than that, it works. And I can say that because I've used it, yup smells like oils, cuts with water or oil, It should be an oxymoron.

  3. 2 hours ago, peteski said:

    Well, today's lacquers aren't made from beetles - they use synthetic resins.  That is where this generalization modelers use that anything "acrylic" is automatically water-based and an enamel is not helpful.

    True lacquer to me is made from cellulose, IE nitrocellulose lacquer. Yes today it's synthetic, true. And there is acrylic lacquer, I just never thought of it that way for primers.

    The beetle thing sometimes called lacquer over seas ( mostly Asia) is actually what we see in our stores here as Shellac. It's made from the secretion of the lac bug.  That stuff coats tree limbs and is flaked off. Take that and mix it with alcohol, it melts into the liquid and you have shellac. I have never known of any model primers or paints made from this, though it makes a good stain sealer, so I guess in that sense you could call it primer or at least sealer.

    • Like 1
  4. 15 hours ago, peteski said:

    Surfaces used for paint compatibility testing:

    Yes, plastic spoons can be made from various plastic resins (yes all plastics are resins).  With the recycling push all over the world, you can easily tell what you are buying.  Look for the recycling symbol on the spoon packaging.  #6 is Polystyrene (which is as close to the kit's plastic as possible). If it is not #6, don't buy it.

    Bottles are usually soft plastic (soft drinks, medicine, etc). Again, they should all have the recycling symbol.  They will likely not be polystyrene, but are still useful for testing paint combinations to see what the finish will look like.  Soft  drinks bottles are usually PET (#1 or 2), and medicine bottles are Polyropylene (#5).

    Recycling symbol is your friend!


    This post runs on a bit but it's good info I believe:

    That's a great chart ! My amber prescription bottles are indeed pp #5.

    But here is an interesting fact for all, on the pp bottles, Stynylrez primer sticks best, better even than Mr Surfacer, both in terms of scratch and tape pull tests to pp #5, I've conducted. But on model plastic the roles are pretty equal if not leaning slightly toward the Mr product.. Here is an even better observation, Tamiya LP lacquer sprayed directly onto each surface with no primer fails badly on pp #5 but sticks like iron to styrene model kit plastic ( shouldn't be a surprise since it's formulated for kit plastic).  The only reason I see for the primer on the model plastic is color control, surface evenness  prep etc. Not so much adhesion.  And it's nearly the same result for Tamiya X series acrylics. Waterborne acrylics however need the primer to stick and with primer do very well at it. Without primer the stuff could flake off and has for many people unknowing of that fact.

    Anyway I have no qualms about using Mr Primer/Mr Surfacer or Stynylrez on models. Either is sufficient, however Stynylrez is both primer and sealer. That can have advantages when needing a sealer.

    Some folks may not know this, Mr Surfacer is not really a lacquer primer. Read the label sometime ! It's a very good primer though.

    Another tidbit: you can thin Stynylrez with hardware store medium dry lacquer thinner, close to 50/50 and in so doing you will get a crazy smooth satin finish from it. I learned that over in the FSM forums, so of course had to do it. Beautiful result. I use it on frames and water hoses etc as color coat in the black Stynylrez. And as a further note, Klean Strip brand hardware store lacquer thinner comes in two formulas now, labelled at the top of the front of the can. Fast dry and Medium dry.

    • Like 1
  5. 10 hours ago, Roadrunner said:

    Of all the great advice which has been offered here, and I appreciate all of it, this really strikes home. I use the spoons just to check various paints to achieve a color I like, but ever gave a second though to compatibility issues, as such. So, I intend to try a combination that already worked on a spoon, but try it again on a couple of parts from the same kit (Revell '32 Ford Sedan), that I know I'll never use otherwise, so thanks very much for that thought. I'll post the results here in a few days.

    I use the amber prescription bottles ( God knows I build up a collection of empties fast enough !), primer is a must for a couple of reasons to include that the amber color bothers the color output/rendition. But more than that I learned some time ago that tape pull tests will fail much easier on those bottles, as well as scratch tests compared to kit plastic. As Ace mentioned, I too use extra hoods or inside of body shells etc for my final tests.

    • Like 2
  6. On 10/31/2023 at 11:45 PM, Pierre_tec said:

    Interesting, I heard about glycerin but haven’t about dawn!

    I have try many times, doing te famous spoon test,but never achieved a nice result. I follow a great YouTuber also a fellow member called Stumpy Grumps Scale speed shop that he paint mostly craft paint with amazing results. 

    Glycerin works. Dish soap is quite old school but I like it. The key with any of this stuff as flow aid is don't over do it. Honestly I like the results I get with dish soap better than glycerin. But that's me, someone else might think otherwise. You can also add commercial flow aid, like Liquitex or Vallejo. Again carefully.

    The biggest key in the formula in terms of additives, I make up is the Liquitex slow dry fluid retarder. That stops the tip dry with craft paints and artist acrylics. Don't mistake Liquitex retarder medium for the fluid, they are two different products.

    • Like 2
  7. On 10/31/2023 at 11:37 PM, bh1701 said:


    Here is the recipe one of the members gave me for a homemade thinner for craft paints. Please note that his last sentence mentions that DecoArt paints don't do well with this recipe.:

    60% bottled or filtered or distilled water.

    40% 91 IPA

    For every 3 oz of this blend put 4-6 drops of Liquitex retarder. (The Liquitex retarder is their Slow Dry Retarder Fluid, not their retarder medium. The medium is not for airbrushing. I bought this retarder from an online store since neither Michael's or Hobby Lobby carry it.)

    For every 3oz of that blend put in a trace amount of Dawn dish washing liquid ( Just a trace amount, not even a drop from the bottle. Use the pointy end of a wooden barbecue skewer and just get a film on the end and mix that in), this breaks surface tension in the paint mix.

    This blend Works in most acrylic paints but DecoArt doesn't like the alcohol. And many craft paints come closer to spraying like solvent paints with this blend.

    I have not used this formula yet, but plan on trying it with the next kit I use craft paint on.



    Yes that's my formula. Works great with FolkArt, Apple Barrel, Anita's, And real well with Craft Smart. I have another blend for DecoArt. Works well with Createx but better with a small amount of denatured alcohol added, since Createx 4011 reducer is very close to the same formula.

    Here is a Mustang with basecoat Rose Gold Silver craft paint shot with that formula. This is out of the airbrush untouched. The second photo should be the same body with Tamiya clear blue over the craft paint unpolished.

    And is a 39 Ford sedan in craft paint with Tamiya clear over it un polished.

    49 Ford craft paint base and a combo of Tamiya Clear red mixed with a splash of Clrear Blue, 5 coats of the clear. This is not sanded or polished either.

    thumbnail_20191025_165950 base.jpg

    thumbnail_20191026_144602 top.jpg

    thumbnail_20191026_144615 top coat.jpg

    thumbnail_20190925_074454 39 sedan.jpg

    thumbnail_20191109_084650 49 Ford.jpgthumbnail_20191109_084650 49 Ford.jpg

  8. 4 minutes ago, espo said:

    They can be hard to find since I don't think they are issuing them anymore. The kit gives you the grills to build a '42 and the '46 and '47 as well. They also offered a two-door sedan and a sedan delivery. Excellent engine with a nice 3 carb setup and some chrome bits for the engine. There have been many pictures posted here in the past. Very tight parts fit and well detailed, you might want to look over the instruction sheet before starting.  


    Wow that looks awesome and sounds it as well !

    I found one at a hobby store listed online. Ebay is nuts on price for used but they do have a scant few listings.

  9. On 10/8/2023 at 3:35 PM, D.Pack said:

    Well Tamiya is a solvent acrylic.

    It's why it's flammable, smells funny needs dedicated thinner and a poison control centre if swallowed. Hellfire.

    And it might still be banned in California as a cancer risk.

    Certainly don't see that info on Revell's aqua acrylic. 

    Acrylic doesn't mean water apparently. Water acrylic paint is the most common, so everyone assumes that all acrylics are aqua based.




    Tamiya acrylic has the potency when opened of a watered down pickled egg brine. Spraying it, the fumes don't last ten minutes, unlike wiping a stained wall down with Fantastik that takes your breath away and gives a headache.

    • Thanks 1
  10. 13 hours ago, Zoom Zoom said:

    Mr. Hobby Mr. Black Surfacer 1500 in a rattle can...or jar for airbrushing. It's amazing.

    Yes ! I even decant the 1000, then further thin with Mr Leveling thinner and airbrush it. It comes out super smooth. Smooth enough I spray Tamiya LP black lacquer over it and sand nothing. I thin the LP with the Leveling thinner as well. The finish is gorgeous, I just did fenders for a 34 Ford pickup this morning in black in fact. Really the finish is beyond what one might expect for a stock truck.

    • Like 1
  11. 7 hours ago, Zippi said:

    I'm getting ready to use the Splash Paints 2K clear for the first time on my 34 Ford Coupe over the Revell enamel.  Any problem with the 2K clear over enamel?  

    Just do a test piece, it should go fine though. Just don't risk it on your model is all, without testing.

    As for me, when I use enamel the appeal is a very nice natural high gloss finish right from the airbrush for use on old classic cars ( Like 1900's to 1950's, built stock. They weren't clear coated in real, neither are mine. I have other options today if I want a base color coat/clear coated finish for a custom or hot rod etc, be it acrylic or flat lacquer base coat.

    Even some lacquers I polish up without clear. Brand new Model A Fords had the fenders painted off site in lacquer and the bodies done on site in enamel . They weren't clear coated.

  12. The black that always seemed to nail it in automotive finishes for me was good old Model Master Classic Black enamel. Course no longer made. Tamiya LP or acrylic are both more stark.  There are craft paints that are close and artist acrylic Mars Black is fairly close. They of course need clear coating. It's just to me Classic Black fit all or most of my gloss black needs.

  13. 55 minutes ago, customline said:

    I think that I will try my big compressor. It's oil-less but its close to 40 years old (it's a "Black Max" from Price Club) I can probably squeeze a few more years out of it with this sort of use. I'll just need a regulator at the booth. Hopefully,  I can regulate down at the compressor to the inlet pressure of the bench unit. Spray gunner has an Iwata regulator with moisture separator but it's 80 bucks. I may try a "Master" brand from Amazon since they all look like they came from the same factory anyway. For an airbrush, I decided on an Iwata Eclipse HC-CS (after much research) and maybe I'll get a break on Prime day or maybe Black Friday.  Thanks for your input, Dave ( and everyone else, too! )

    If you can get the compressor regulator output to 50 or 55 psi you should be fine. If not you could always add a secondary regulator that will. Most airbrush regulators should handle at least that 50psi or so on the input side. I can get my 8 gal noisy 125 psi compressor down to 0 if I want to, I output 25psi a lot though.

  14. On 9/27/2023 at 2:24 PM, customline said:

    Is there a brand or some identification on yours that I can look for? Thanks for your input, Dave.

    Hah, I went to where I purchased mine and it's listed unavailable. But you could go to Point Zero's own site and see there what they have as well as suppliers. And that includes compressors. I do trust the name.

    Now that said, at Amazon Paasche lists a regulator for not too bad a price. If you're gonna pipe in from a big compressor you want a regulator rated for 135 psi on the incoming side. Amazon has those as well. So does TCP Global, as they handle both airbrush air handling and bigger or more powerful compressor air management.

  15. Point Zero has a good regulator/water separator that you can mount near your work area and run compressor air to that, regulate. Then run your airbrush line from the regulator. This works great because it traps more moisture the further the separator is from the compressor. It gives the water cooling time to separate out of the air and be caught at the regulator.. I think that regulator is around $12-$14 at Amazon and comes with a bag full of adapter fittings.. The one I have is very well  made but it's a few years old, I'm assuming they are still made as well.

    My compressor is an 8 gal portable on wheels, so not an airbrush compressor at all. It generates 135 psi and 4.5 cfm air flow. I don't just have airbrushes but also LVLP spray guns, as well as nail guns.

  16. Yep, I agree, lacquer thinner for spraying, mineral spirits for brush painting. Just be sure you get the real lacquer thinner and not the newer so called " green friendly" stuff.

    Another blend that works well for spraying is to mix mineral spirits and hardware store paint thinner together 50/50, then thin your enamel with that blend. LT is easier and seems to be that just right product in one can without any fuss.. I've always mixed enamel for spraying 3-2 paint to thinner. So slightly less thinner than 50/50.

    • Like 1
  17. You mentioned Vallejo primer, what will the color coat and top coat paints be ? As to the primer though, not my first choice but since you have it, lightly scuff with micro mesh or similar. Wash the body or wipe down at least, with mineral spirits or similar to get finger prints and other oils off the surface.  Blow the body off with just air from your airbrush and apply a coat or two of the primer. Set it aside someplace and dry for 24 hours before proceeding further. Or if you have a dehydrator or paint dryer use that for an hour or two.

    Note the primer will feel dry to the touch sooner than 24 hours but Vallejo's standard is 24 hours dry time. It may feel dry sooner but hasn't cured through all the way yet. Also fwiw Vallejo paints take well to heat setting.

  18. 46 minutes ago, bh1701 said:

    Thanks - I bought some today, but it was the Medium. I will return it and look for a source for the Liquid Retarder!


    Sorry about that, I wish I had mentioned it earlier. But Micheals stores used to carry both, it's a matter of being in stock or not. Dick Blick art supply has it or lists it too.

    But ya know I've never tried the retarder medium for air brushing. Where I put the retarder in the thinner in small amounts, it might actually work. I have the medium for brush painting ( My wife and I do art work too), I'll mix up a batch to satisfy my own curiosity and try it, then pass that info on in the future. It's actually designed for brushing and pouring paints at up to 40% and not break down the paints medium. The Slow Dri liquid is up to 25% and is clear in color but it won't stretch the paint medium like the retarder medium will. None of that matters at a few drops in the thinner, enough to stop tip dry.

  • Create New...