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Raj Vir Singh

My first ever model- Airfix 1/72 Spitfire MkIa

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Hello everyone!

Okay, so this is the first model I've ever made and pretty much the first thing I've painted since I was 16.. It's the Airfix 1/72 starter spitfire kit.
The model is brush painted since i don't have an airbrush. I was terrified at the prospect of painting a camo, but I'm pretty happy with the result. It's not been weathered since i couldn't find clear coat anywhere here. Wondering if i can do an oil wash over acrylic paint without giving it a clear coat.
Anyway, on with the pics.. hope you guys like it.
P.S.- still need to add the antenna wire..

IMAG0252_zps6aa676e3.jpg

IMAG0256_zps1b2ab59b.jpg

IMAG0253_zpsb9645a9c.jpg

C360_2013-09-22-00-01-07-607_zpsd7acddd9

C360_2013-09-27-18-38-08-944_zps9eee6710

That's about it.. All criticism is much appreciated..

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As you asked, here's a couple of tips - firstly a bit more attention is needed to the join line along the fuselage. Perhaps a bit of filling on the top of the cowling and some attention with a file behind the cockpit. This is the kind of detail that photographs make appear a lot worse than the eye notices. Secondly, it is a good idea to run a little PVA adhesive/white glue/Kristal Kleer (or whatever) around the join of the canopy to the fuselage before painting so there's no gap for paint to disappear into. Not where the canopy slides, naturally!

You've commented on not being able to get a clear varnish coat, which is a shame because that should have prevented the slight silvering on the decals. The kit is a bit heavy-handed on the panel lines, which do exaggerate that. You may be able to remove it by pricking holes in the transfer over the silvering and adding Microsol to suck the transfer into the grooves.

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Great for a first model. The brush painting turned out fine. I have an airbrush but usually use a brush as I enjoy it more!

What are you planning to build next?

David

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Welcome to the world of scale modeling. Have to mimic everything Graham told you! There are many many talented people here and all over the net that can help you learn how to overcome these and other issues. Remember, no matter what you do from here on out, modeling is about having fun and you can learn something new every day! :thumbsup2:

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I'll second what Graham mentioned about the panel lines, but perhaps you have a limited amount of resources as you are new to the hobby. I think you did a terrific job on the camo, and considering you laid decals on top of paint instead of a gloss coat I'd say you did really well.

You might be able to get some future or klear to work it's magic on the decals if you can find some. But be careful not to work at it too much as future/klear can remove paint.

modelglue

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:welcome: to the hobby Raj - That's a good first effort, and the others have already given you some tips to improve the next one. We're all on the same learning path really. Some of us further down than others, and some watching the view from the side of the path. An airbrush would definitely improve your finish, but you need a good base on which to build like anything, so perhaps work on the basics such as seam filling and preparation before you move onto an airbrush finish. The thin layers of paint you can put on with an airbrush will show up all the blemishes you've not sorted out, so it's a case of learning to walk before you try to run :)

Keep up the good work, and keep learning ;)


As an aside, if you have an S C Johnston product in your country called Klear, Future, or some variation, which is an acrylic floor polish, that makes a great clear varnish. Here's a page on Swanny's Models that could help you track it down - clicky

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Thanks a lot everyone for the warm welcome! and much more for all the advice! I need to work a lot on my finishing. filling and filing are concepts i never knew existed in modelling until now!

Thanks a lot Graham for taking out the time to help me out. I didn't know decals need to be applied after clear coating. Apart from that too i faced a little trouble with the decals, mostly due to my inexperience. I've ordered some acrylic clear coat from Tamiya. Lets see how that works. I also wanna improve my brush painting and learn about priming..

Would the camo look weird if the clear coat was gloss and not flat? It's a big pain finding resources for these hobbies here..

Thanks again everyone! My next model will probably be either a P-51D or a Vampire.. :)

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Welcome to the addiction known as modelling! This is a very good forum for help and advice. I was modelling for many years before I got an airbrush. I still use my brushes a lot.

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I think you should be congratulated on posting and asking for improvements. Far better that than those who simply look for kudos and throw their toys out of the pram when not received. My comments are all based on mistakes I've made myself in the past, and a lot more recently than my first kit - or even my first since I was 16!

The silvering comes from air caught in the grain of the matt paint. To avoid this either paint with gloss paint - Xtracolour comes gloss for this reason - or cover with a clear gloss varnish before adding the transfers. The gloss varnish will darken the colours, but if you finally cover the model with a matt varnish this restores the original finish and the colours revert to what came in the tin. For some subjects you may find a satin finish works better than either a full gloss or a fully matt, and this Spitfire is probably one of those. If you can't get such things then just accept this but model with what you can get, all will provide experience to improve your general modelling skills. The basic kit can always be revisited for another coat of paint and/or a new set of transfers.

One possible problem you'll find with either the P-51 or the Vampire is getting a good metal finish. However, the Vampire and the wings of the P-51 were painted with Aluminium (silver) paint, so that makes life easier. Or just do a camouflaged version anyway.

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Thanks again Graham! I'll look for all these materials for the next one.. The P-51 will be a camouflaged version, but given the paint effect I got on the Spitfire, maybe I'll try thinning the paint; someone gave me a bottle of turpentine. Mostly for a more uniform finish.

I just found a Tamiya additive that can covert any gloss finish into a flat one so maybe I'll look into that..

I'm so excited and now I have my end semester papers.. I'll probably post my next by the end of October..

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It was commonly said that several thin paints are a lot better than one thick one. I must admit not always following this advice in the rush to get a model finished, but looking at the results it does seem to be true, at least quite often!

Thinners can be a problematic matter, with a number of options depending upon your access to chemical knowledge and stocks. Ideally you should use the appropriate tinner for whatever make of paint you use, but this can be expensive and usually unnecessary. They are often just a common chemical available at much lower prices in quantity - as long as you know what and where. You say you have a bottle of turpentine - I presume this is actually turpentine substitute, or white spirits, and I've always found this to work well with Humbrol, White Ensign, Revell, Precision, and Xtracolour. You don't need more than a few drops to improve the flow of the paint, but that will depend upon just how many coats you are willing to apply. There's no substitute for practice, and having an old kit that can be rubbed down time and again is best for this. I haven't tried the expensive true turpentine, and would be a little wary of doing so.

PS these chemical comments are directed to using enamel paints, not acrylic.

Edited by Graham Boak

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That is a very creditable build and the photographs are very good too.

Part of the fun of modelling is finding various tools and materials from various sources to help make the model a bit better.

A good sharp knife or scalpel blade helps to get the bits of sprue on the components, a bit of fine sand paper or a file will also remove the traces of them. Most seams in the new Airfix models will almost disappear if you just check the fit and remove the odd burr that sometimes prevents a perfect fit. A bit or extra glue on the joins will seep out when you join then - let that go hard and you can sand and file it off and the seam will be gone - just about. If you can get some typing correction fluid - it makes a great filler of small gaps and blemishes.

A pair of tweezers for some of the very small parts Airfix have in their latest kits and a few spring clamps or clothes pegs to hold parts together are also useful.

The Airfix starter kits come with acrylic paints - you can thin them with water and it is worth cleaning the plastic with soapy water to remove any grease before you paint it. Thinner layers will result in a smoother finish and the Airfix decals do go on quite well. Press down on them with a wad of tissue paper to expel the air and reduce the silvering.

I'm looking forward to the Mustang.

Edited by Plastic Bonsai

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As others have said – welcome!

That's a very creditable effort you've made and almost unbelievably so, considering it's your first model ever! Wow…

As you've already found out, there's a lot of encouragement and good advice (based on experience from making mistakes!) around here. Good luck with your Muspire/Vampstang!

Kind regards,

Joachim

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Welcome to Britmodeller and modelling in general. Great first build, you're painting is very nice indeed. Getting some filler and variety of sanding sticks would be a great next step to deal with those joins :)

Cheers, Neil

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Very nice for first build. U can find airbrush supplies in Bangalore. check for Art Master airbrush, mostly u would find a 0.3mm needle. You should be able to find Klear or Plegde's Future in Bangalore's supermarkets. These are mostly used for Marble floors.

Rishi

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Everything that needs to be said has been about sharpening your skills,a great start with the Spitfire! there a loads of inexpensive but well

moulded kits out there so get a couple more and lets see some pics. :goodjob:

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Thanks everyone for your appreciation! Goes a long way in inspiring a newcomer.. And I must say I'm pleasantly surprised by the warm welcome and support from everyone.

Thanks Plastic Bonsai for all your insight :) Gonna apply all this new knowledge on the next build; just hope it turn out a little better than this one..

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Hi Raj,

Excellent first model, and a great choice of subject, the spitfires are my favorite! Your model is loads better than my first attempts since I returned. Ask loads of questions, everyone is really helpful here.

Best of luck with your second model :)

Val

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Hi Raj

I'm on the same sort of learning curve with aircraft so the suggestions from others have helped me as well! Thank You for asking the question. First model? Then I say :goodjob:

When you head to the supermarket go to the cosmetics section and get ladies nail shapers (sanding sticks) and a nail polish buffer (like a piece of material on a foam stick). The first is excellent for removing excess filler from joints, the second for polishing scratches out of the plastic.

If you mix paint and varnish types then generally enamels can go over acrylics but not the other way round.

The varnish is to give a smooth surface for the decal, it's best applied to the whole model except for transparent bits, once the decals are dry you need another coat to protect them. This can be matt, gloss or satin. For wartime aircraft matt or satin varnish seems to be normal, it's really down to what you prefer.

Have fun and enjoy yourself. Things like air-bruhes can come later, you can get a very good finish with a brush. You can also learn a lot by going back to earlier models you build and tidying them up with new paint and decals.

I'm with Val you've done much better than I did when I started.....

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Thanks SleeperService :) Looking through all the posts on this forum I realize there is so much to modelling.. I don't understand 90% of what people are talking about..

There's one more question for now.. a clear coat of acrylic would still be acrylic and have a rough surface right? So I should look for an enamel clear coat?

Can't wait for my papers to end so I can start my next.. :weep:

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Hi Raj

If the Tamiya clear you are getting is X-22 then it's acrylic and a gloss finish. It may be easier to use the spray can TS-13. Cover the transparencies and cover everything else with it.

Apply the decals then use a satin or matt coat over the top to give the final look you want. This final coat could be enamel but I'd advise staying with acrylic. Humbrol do spray cans of all of them if you can get them. These are the acrylic ones.

49 Acrylic Varnish Matt - 150ml Spray Varnish Product Code: AD6049

135 Acrylic Varnish Satin - 150ml Spray Varnish Product Code: AD6135

35 Acrylic Varnish Gloss - 150ml Spray Varnish Product Code: AD6035

When applying them spray several very light coats rather than a single thick one. You should then get a very good finish.

Remember If you work hard when you are young you won't have to work as hard when you are older.

Also remember The only stupid question is the one you haven't asked!

Happy to Help as are most of us.

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Hi Raj,

I too have got back into modelling after a long break and can only echo what others have said.

Before I decided to make a model again, I spent a good month reading up on the subject and taking in any tip I could find.

It has helped me a great deal.

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Hi Raj, You have joined a great site for learning from.

The members here are willing to pass on tips.

For your first build it was not bad, better than my first build 40 odd years ago.

And I have just got back into the hobby recently, and when I joined I was made very welcome.

Good luck for the future young man hope to see more of your builds soon.

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