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Elliott harris

White paints go cloudy and don't cover

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I'm not sure if this is the right place, because I'm quite new to using forums but I'm having a problem and hopefully someone will be able to help. When using white acrylic paint for painting any kit it never covers very well always ends up going transparent or milky, I've tired lots of different brands or paint and different finishes like Matt gloss etc but all have the same problem. Is this something other people have problems with or is there so,etching I could be doing wrong and tips would be greatly appreciated. 

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The best acrylic white paint I've found is Tamiya XF-2 matt white thinned with Tamiya thinner. I've found that any acrylic paint should go down on primer for which I use Halfords.  

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22 minutes ago, Elliott harris said:

I'm not sure if this is the right place

It is ;)

 

White is one of those colours that people have problems with.  Brush-painting it could be a nightmare, and with some paints it's probably not much better airbrushing it, although in general airbrushing white is easier IMHO.  I think you're probably talking about brush-painting, but in case you aren't, I've been using Alclad White Primer as my main white for years now, airbrushed of course.  I seldom use any other white other than as a lightening tool for other colours.  The other option is to use a rattle-can (which Tamiya do in connection with @Stephen's post), but whatever you do, always make sure that things you're painting are an even tone beforehand with the weaker colours (yellow is another one).  One way of achieving this is to use primer, which you can get in rattle-cans from Mr Surfacer and Tamiya (plus others).  That might either be all you need, or a good base from which to apply your white of choice :)

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  • Elliott, as Mike just wrote above, you are in the right place. White is possibly the most frustrating color to paint. It doesn't matter whether you're using enamels, acrylics, lacquer, etc.. It just does NOT want to cover properly. As a young paratrooper at Ft. Bragg, North Carolina in the late '70s, I bought a basic Badger(single action) airbrush and some canned air(couldn't afford a compressor, and I doubt that my company's first sergeant would have tolerated the noise) to use on my aircraft models. Here in the USA, enamels are the predominate paint used. The first time I sprayed white on a plane; I was amazed at how well it covered, the appearance, everything. It made a world of difference. Since then(except a small part or piece, such as a pilot's helmet(I model in 1/72nd), or similar), I always airbrush white. I  use a "big hairy stick(regular paint brush)" for everything else, but, an airbrush for white. As I use enamels; primer is not always needed. But, a very large number of the members here agree that acrylics should be painted over a primer. I'd go with that. Mike and Stephan have given you some very good recommendations as to what you can use. Some of the primers can also 'stand-in' for white as well.
  • Good luck in your modelling!
  • Joe

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Thanks for all of the advice guys, I've never tried tamiya paints I will give them a go. I've always used rattle cans for big area like car bodies, so will probably give that a go with white aswell and I always use the halford primer. I keep thinking about trying an airbrush but don't really know where to start what's a good first one and what you need. I'm moving house soon so will then have a bit more space and then might try dabbling in airbrushing. 

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What models do you build? Cars, bikes or military stuff. I can recommend you an airbrush better if i know what type of models you make. Also, what finish are you doing the white in, gloss or matt? Again some whites are better than others. But I'd recommend different ones for different jobs. Give a bit more information and I'll suggest stuff you can try based on your needs...

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I just started using Vallejo White Surface Primer and it sure makes a difference when spraying those hard to do colours; white, red yellow etc. I found if you follow the instructions very closely you will not have any problems. I let the primer "cure" for a good 12 hours before sanding, masking or over painting. The waiting to paint part is a little extreme but I'm in no rush. I cover the primer with Tamiya, Gunze Sangyo Aqueous and Vallejo Model Air without a problem

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12 hours ago, Steve Noble said:

What models do you build? Cars, bikes or military stuff. I can recommend you an airbrush better if i know what type of models you make. Also, what finish are you doing the white in, gloss or matt? Again some whites are better than others. But I'd recommend different ones for different jobs. Give a bit more information and I'll suggest stuff you can try based on your needs...

I build pretty much anything, but at the moment it's mainly revell car kits so going for a gloss finish if possible. 

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Ok, so you don't need a really expensive fine detail airbrush and can use a larger tipped model to produce a nice gloss finish. Myself I'm using one of these by Gunze

 

https://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10411364

 

Very simple single action brush and great for painting car bodies and everything associated with car kits. Just fill up with paint and go.

An airbrush will open up many paints that are airbrush only. Mr Color do some gloss whites that will cover very nicely and give a beautiful finish on car bodies. Check out their paint range. Also the new Tamiya LP range are much the same. Zero paints too are very good, especially their whites, really do cover well. They need a solid primer and a clear over the white as they dry matt. But their pure white is bulletproof for coverage. Any small hobby compressor will power the Gunze brush..

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9 hours ago, Steve Noble said:

Ok, so you don't need a really expensive fine detail airbrush and can use a larger tipped model to produce a nice gloss finish. Myself I'm using one of these by Gunze

 

https://www.1999.co.jp/eng/10411364

 

Very simple single action brush and great for painting car bodies and everything associated with car kits. Just fill up with paint and go.

An airbrush will open up many paints that are airbrush only. Mr Color do some gloss whites that will cover very nicely and give a beautiful finish on car bodies. Check out their paint range. Also the new Tamiya LP range are much the same. Zero paints too are very good, especially their whites, really do cover well. They need a solid primer and a clear over the white as they dry matt. But their pure white is bulletproof for coverage. Any small hobby compressor will power the Gunze brush..

Thanks for the info I will look into that 

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