1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Painting methods, display options and general tweaks.
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patrickivan
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1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by patrickivan » Tue Nov 20, 2012 10:36 am

Hi all

So I've been scouring the net for painting techniques to enhance my 1/350 tmp build, and while I intend to actually use the decal sheets for the paneling, as opposed to painting each one, the base coat is very important to enhance the shine under the decals.

I want to experiment with tamiya's pearl white, but man, I can only do so much due to it's price (pearl white is damned expensive). I did manage a test strip with some base coats under the white due to the opacity of it. I wasn't happy.

My test strip included base primer grey, silver, gold, and aluminium with two coats of the white on top. What I got was a consistant grey with some very subtle variations under white light.

I'm curious if anyone has had success with obtaining positive results to emhance the decal panels for this (or similar kits)? Theones for the 1/350 are indeed well done, but again, that base paint job is so important.

I have had positive results with less expensive auto paint on kits, but there is always a chance of crazing...

Anyways- let's get the ball (in the can or spray gun) rolling.
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George Nathan

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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by zookman » Tue Nov 20, 2012 12:22 pm

i would go with a light gray primer and then a couple light coats of a flat white if finish coat is gonna be white .. gloss white doesnt seem to cover very well least for me anyway but ive got good results using a flat white under a gloss white instead of going over light gray .... i use tamiya acyrilics so other paint may be different ... there is also a clear pearlcoat too .. not sure off hand who makes it but ice got some .. might be testors since i think its in a can but ill have to check

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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by patrickivan » Tue Nov 20, 2012 3:36 pm

That makes sense... the flat white first. The effect I was hoping for with the metals under just had too much grey in it I think- though I'm perplexed why the pearl white came out so grey over the gold.

I was also using tamiya pearl (T45 I think it is). But I will look into the pearl clear as well.

I really don't know the differnce between the make up in Auto and model paint, but the selection for the auto stuff is really good, and not nearly as expensive- at least in Canada. My small can of Tamiya pearl white cost $10! :evil:
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by Tesral » Wed Dec 19, 2012 5:28 pm

For what it is worth Testors has a gloss pearl coat without color. I've used it and I like the results. To get the pearl look you have ot leave it glossy however. It does add depth to flat color. I used it as the pre decal coat on the USS Kongo. That was over flat white.
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by Cullenszoo » Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:26 am

I don't know how things turned out for the OP but for future reference I found an interesting situation with my big refit.

My kit was an older one modeled in light green. YUCK! I didn't use primer but sprayed in flat white and then applied the aztec decals. it looked nice until I applied my clear flat. There were sections of "silvering" where the decal didn't apply as well as it should. even with plenty of solvaset being used.

to avoid this silvering spray clear gloss over the flat white. apply the decals and then cover with clear flat. The decals love sticking to the gloss.

I haven't personally used the pearl but I figure a lot of that pearl look won't show up once you do a flat coat. I remember reading the filming model was just painted white and the aztec pattern was only a clear pearl. Don't quote me though I've sniffed a lot of glue since then. LOL
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by Moongrim » Sun Apr 07, 2013 3:04 pm

Another method that works for me:

As I've used it on my 350 Refit.

Primer, flat white, aztecking, gloss white, azteck removal, light sand, gloss clear. Decal Phase (Decal/Water, Decal Set, Decal Sol, all with appropriate drying in between), then gloss clear again, then flat clear.

The number of compliments have increased since I learned of this process.
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by Tesral » Sun Apr 07, 2013 4:53 pm

It is always best to decal over a gloss finish. Flat and glass are mechanical effects.

Flat is flat because the surface is micro pitted. It does not reflect light but scatters it. When you put a decal over that you trap small bubbles of air that become the dreaded silvering.

Gloss is shiny because it doesn't have the pits, it reflects the light. Ergo there is little air to be trapped by the decal, no silvering.
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by patrickivan » Mon Apr 29, 2013 2:11 pm

I haven't even got to the painting stage yet. I'm still filling and sanding and scribbing the saucer rim. It's a pain in the butt. Also, fitting the photoetched parts requires a lot of filling and sanding as well. Quite time consuming. And it's been weeks since I've had a chance to work on her.
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by Moongrim » Mon Apr 29, 2013 5:34 pm

Oh we all understand Patrickivan, those of us who have worked on her.
There are Times, Sir, when men of good Conscience cannot blindly follow orders. You acknowledge their sentience, but ignore their personal liberties and freedoms. Order a man to hand over his child to the state? Not while I"m captain.
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Re: 1/350 pearl finish thoughts

Post by ColHero » Wed Oct 23, 2013 7:51 pm

Personally, I think this model (at 350 scale) should have as little paint on it as possible to avoid the over-painted look - and to me, coats of clear make her look toyish, because in order for the clear to be smooth it has to be a solid coat which looks obvious - but the Reift is indeed glossy - and the A is more satin - difficult effects to reproduce at this scale without over-doing it. So, what Im trying on my A is;

-Base: auto flt white over primer, then lightly sanded smooth
-Final coat: mixed flt white w/ gray and blue, then lightly sanded smooth
-Aztecs
-Wipe-on coat
-Decals

For the Wipe-on coat - I use a microfiber cloth and wipe-on a thinned mix of the Final paint with Satin - I wipe it on and lightly rub it in till it gives a nice thin pearlized sheen, like galvanized steel - it also smoothes the surface for decals, which I apply with MicroSol and DONE. This way the model doesnt look overpainted and still has that nice sheen.

Actually, the wipe-on technique works in other ways too - for thin colored areas like the Shuttlebay cowl (the aft section of the Eng Hull) I wiped on a thin mix of red/gold - works well for adding a tint (darker/lighter/color) or finish (flat/gloss) to an already painted surface - the more you wipe on the stronger the color tone.

Lets see if it stands the test of time...!

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