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Still getring silvering


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Hi people... Ok ive sprayed my spitfire then gave it a spray of gloss varnish, applied the decals then finished with a matt varinsh but i have noticed that there is little areas of silvering.. Not much but enough to annoy me... Is there any way to deal wirh this

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I think once you've varnished on top of the decals there's not a lot you can do without a very real risk of making things MUCH worse. But one thing that might help is to use the underlying color to paint over the silvered areas, then revarnish

 

Cheers,

 

Colin

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It doesn't help you directly but from bitter experience I have found that water slide transfers need to be tested before applying to a model as transfer quality and qualities are all over the place.

 

The myth that transfers need a gloss finish to avoid "silvering" is finally starting to be debunked for the fallacy that it is. However what does cause silvering? Current thinking from the little I have read on the subject is that it is caused by an adhesive failure. Old transfers, too long a soak, badly printed whatever. It seems that this is now getting some traction as companies are now marketing transfer adhesive to be used when laying down transfers. What ever the cause of silvering it is finally hearten to see the gloss finish nonsense being rightly challenged. Silvering is a problem of the transfer not of the surface finish.

 

If it was me and I definitely couldn't live with it I would spot sand the silvering back and repaint refinish.

 

 

Edited by dromia
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For your future builds I strongly advise to use some decal setting liquid, there are a number available from different brands. These soften the decal so that the carrier film perfectly adheres to the surface, so avoiding silvering.

For the current model, the only solution is to touch up the area with the underlying paint using a small brush. After this it may be worth spraying another coat of matt paint. If the work is done right, it will be very hard to see the touched-up spot

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One thing I've tried, with moderate success, is to puncture the silvered areas with a fine sewing needle and brush thinned varnish over the holes. With luck, the varnish runs under the transfer and helps minimise the silvering. I've also tried this with decal setting solution, which sometimes helps.

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4 hours ago, ckw said:

I think once you've varnished on top of the decals there's not a lot you can do without a very real risk of making things MUCH worse. But one thing that might help is to use the underlying color to paint over the silvered areas, then revarnish

 

Cheers,

 

Colin

Thats a good idea never thought of that thanks

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There are no universal setting solutions. Some decals are thick and need more powerful substances to help them, other don't.

A gloss varnish (or paint) will help a lot, but you shouldn't automatically assume that the surface is now smooth. You could still have small imperfections and those will be one of the causes. 

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11 hours ago, dromia said:

The myth that transfers need a gloss finish to avoid "silvering" is finally starting to be debunked for the fallacy that it is.

This is very interesting as I have always believed this to be the case (i.e decals should be placed on a gloss coat). However as a scientist I am now beginning to think I should do some tests. I would say that the reasoning behind the gloss surface does make sense for at least two reasons. The first is that the underlying material is less likely to trap micro air bubbles that can cause optical distortion. The second is that in passing a decal over matt surfaces you are more likely to rub off adhesive. However I have found that over soaking and poor decal adhesive can certainly contribute to silvering. 

 

My experience says to me that it might end up being a combination of these and other things - as this is usually the case in complex interactions between materials. I shall have to find some suitable decals and conduct a series of experiments. Just a matter of finding the time!

 

Thank you for raising this issue and peaking my interest.

Edited by Pete F
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7 hours ago, Ant79 said:

Hi people... Ok ive sprayed my spitfire then gave it a spray of gloss varnish, applied the decals then finished with a matt varinsh but i have noticed that there is little areas of silvering.. Not much but enough to annoy me... Is there any way to deal wirh this

Hey @Ant79, just a quick tip for the future - try and fix any silvering before applying a matt varnish. There's no real fix after you varnish over the decals besides hiding it with paint as someone above said. If you still have access to the decal you can continue to try hitting it with more solvent or stabbing the air pockets with a small pin, but once you varnish that option is gone. Matt varnish can hide a few small imperfections including sheen differences between decal and paint, but silvering will often show through. 

 

Do you have a photo of the silvering, that may help us help you. Sometimes people confuse silvering with part of a clear decal film showing. 

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1 hour ago, Pete F said:

This is very interesting as I have always believed this to be the case. However as a scientist I am now beginning to think I should do some tests. I would say that the reasoning behind the gloss surface does make sense for at least two reasons. The first is that the underlying material is less likely to trap micro air bubbles that can cause optical distortion. The second is that in passing a decal over matt surfaces your are more likely to rub off adhesive. However I have found that over soaking and poor decal adhesive can certainly contribute to silvering. 

 

My experience says to me that it might end up being a combination of these and other things - as this is usually the case in complex interactions between materials. I shall have to find some suitable decals and conduct a series of experiments. Just a matter of finding the time!

 

Thank you for raising this issue and peaking my interest.

@Pete FIt is certainly a piece of dogma that is being challenged. When I first got back into the hobby a few years ago this is all i heard, gloss coat must be applied before decals. In the last year or so I have not applied a gloss coat pre-decal, but I have been fine-sanding the areas where decals will be going before application - I agree a smooth surface still helps to prevent problems and helps with positioning. That said there are times where even this isn't possible (around small detail complex surfaces), and decals often find a way to make it work. 

 

I guess one example of this in action is decals settling into rivet holes (essentially pockets of air) with a little manual work followed by applications of decal setting solutions and solvents. Why would this process not apply to an uneven non-glossed surface?

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8 hours ago, dromia said:

. . .

The myth that transfers need a gloss finish to avoid "silvering" is finally starting to be debunked for the fallacy that it is. However what does cause silvering? Current thinking from the little I have read on the subject is that it is caused by an adhesive failure. Old transfers, too long a soak, badly printed whatever. It seems that this is now getting some traction as companies are now marketing transfer adhesive to be used when laying down transfers. What ever the cause of silvering it is finally hearten to see the gloss finish nonsense being rightly challenged. Silvering is a problem of the transfer not of the surface finish.

 

 

Really? I’m not sure it’s current thinking - it’s been known for years that silvering is usually due to bad adherence, whether the transfer is old or new, good or bad; silvering is due to air being trapped beneath it. A decal will sit over the ‘lumps’ in a matt surface. The answer historically is polishing that surface locally or varnishing to flatten out that surface to help reduce the trapping of air. Decal softeners aid that process. I’ve used dilute acrylic varnish to help adhesion with the transfer pressed and ‘rinsed’ by dabbing gently with a damp cloth (don’t use softener as well because it’ll go milky). Transfers may not need a gloss surface but it most certainly helps me. Transfer adhesive is just another solution to the same problem. Having said all that, I’d love to read about the mythical nonsense being debunked - could you provide a source for this discussion, please?

 

Nick

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Whatever you do, any sort of masking tape or material is DEATH to decals. 

 

7 hours ago, dromia said:

Silvering is a problem of the transfer not of the surface finish.

Decals can clearly be a part of the problem. I have a Kinetic F-16D (family model) that I finished with Caracal decals, except for the "no-step" markings and the in-flight refueling door, where I relied on the kit's decals. Caracal's decals went on beautifully! That included some quite large and subtle markings. The "no-step" markings are quite narrow, so went on fine. The refueling door, however, silvered badly. I had the same finish all around and used the same application process all around, so the decals are vstrongly implicated.

30 minutes ago, Shin said:

I guess one example of this in action is decals settling into rivet holes (essentially pockets of air) with a little manual work followed by applications of decal setting solutions and solvents. Why would this process not apply to an uneven non-glossed surface?

Rivet holes are quite large compared to a non-smooth paint surface, so that's a bit of an apples and crankcases comparison.

 

I usually don't apply a gloss coat to my models before applying decals, I can confidently skip the gloss coat because I get an extremely smooth finish from Mr Color paint. Before I switched to Mr Color and learned to apply it properly, I did indeed get rough finishes. Not a surprising result when the paint is too thick and airbrushing from too far away (3-4 inches).

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35 minutes ago, dnl42 said:

Whatever you do, any sort of masking tape or material is DEATH to decals. 

... unless of course you want to remove a decal, in which case it becomes impervious to all known adhesives 😀

 

More seriously, if you do ever need to mask over a decal I have successfully used Parafilm M for this (as its not actually an adhesive) though I should say only on decals that have been protected with varnish or Future. Parafilm can be tricky to work with, so I use Tamy tape as my usual masking material, but Parafilm can save the day when delicate surfaces (decals, metallic finishes) are involved.

 

Cheers,

 

Colin

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For my money, this works as well as any method, is friendly towards all finishes & decals which some decal setting systems are not & is cheap & user friendly. For anyone without this stuff or similar, there are alternatives available in most parts of the world, many have been discussed within these pages.

Steve.

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10 hours ago, stevehnz said:

For my money, this works as well as any method, is friendly towards all finishes & decals which some decal setting systems are not & is cheap & user friendly. For anyone without this stuff or similar, there are alternatives available in most parts of the world, many have been discussed within these pages.

Steve.

How would you apply this to the model

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19 hours ago, Shin said:

Hey @Ant79, just a quick tip for the future - try and fix any silvering before applying a matt varnish. There's no real fix after you varnish over the decals besides hiding it with paint as someone above said. If you still have access to the decal you can continue to try hitting it with more solvent or stabbing the air pockets with a small pin, but once you varnish that option is gone. Matt varnish can hide a few small imperfections including sheen differences between decal and paint, but silvering will often show through. 

 

Do you have a photo of the silvering, that may help us help you. Sometimes people confuse silvering with part of a clear decal film showing. 

I dont no how to upload photos sorry

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29 minutes ago, Ant79 said:

How would you apply this to the model

Maybe too late for this one though the solution that @Heather Kay recommended above is one I've used & got a distinct improvement if not a perfect result. The stiffish brush that i mentioned in that link does a good job of persuading the solution to work into the pin holes & under the decal film.  Fwiw , unless you can guarantee a superb sprayed finish, I believe that applying decals over a mat finish is asking for trouble. I have, years ago when I didn't know any better, applied decals over matt & got away with it, this being straight decal with their own glue & no fancy solutions. I've also had dire fails doing this & while admitting it perhaps depends on the decals in question, I also believe it doesn't hurt to have a quid each way & go for safe, gloss then use the Klear or equivalent solution as outlined in my link. It is wonderfully effective & very forgiving as you'll pick up on if you read that thread right through.

Steve.

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On 04/09/2020 at 10:19, dromia said:

The myth that transfers need a gloss finish to avoid "silvering" is finally starting to be debunked for the fallacy that it is.

I think we need to distinguish between "gloss" and "smooth". For example, Colourcoats paints are said to be "decal ready" despite being a semi-gloss finish ... but they are extremely smooth.

 

As an unintended experiment, in the process of painting a Blenheim I used Xtracolor gloss Dark Earth and achieved both a glossy and very smooth finish. I then discovered my xtracolor dark green had gone bad. Being impatient, I used some Mr Hobby dark green which is happened to have (semi-matt). To even out the finish prior to decaling I spray a coat of future. Now the aircraft is indeed uniformly glossy, but to the touch not as smooth as the gloss Xtracolor. I will need to apply a light sanding which will take a bit off the shine, but will provide a smoother surface.

 

If there is a fallacy it may well be that 'gloss' does not necessarily equate to smooth,

 

Cheers,

 

Colin

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In over 20 years, not consecutive, modelling I have never taken any cognisance of the surface finish onto which I apply my water slide transfers, transfers are applied to whatever finish the paint has and on one model that could be a mixture of surfaces and have never had silvering other than back in the day forty odd years ago which at the time I subscribed to me having a gloss finish but upon reflection in the light of more experience and information I now put it down to a transfer failure. Gloss or smooth I still get transfers to settle as well on a matt surface as well as a smooth surface, hell someone was telling me the other day that there are supposed to be videos on line of people putting water slider transfers onto unglossed sandpaper without the dreaded slivering.

 

There is far more to successful transfer application than just a gloss/smooth surface and the current gloss finish dogma has no doubt hindered the development of better water slide transfer insight and understanding. The greatest variable to understanding successful transfer application is undoubtedly transfer quality, not just in manufacturing, materials and process but in age,he transfers  storage conditions, light exposure etc. Until we understand more about the real nature and alchemy of transfers themselves we will always struggle to get the right application process for a particular transfer.

 

I don't know the answer but all my modelling experience shows me that the surface finish, with the parameters of plastic scale model kits, is irrelevant as to transfer application.

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37 minutes ago, dromia said:

we will always struggle to get the right application process for a particular transfer.

Hence the value of a forgiving method that copes with most variables. See my post above, #19

39 minutes ago, dromia said:

the surface finish, with the parameters of plastic scale model kits, is irrelevant as to transfer application.

Other's mileage may vary on this, mine certainly has in the past.

Steve.

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Ive struggled with this in the past and have just tried this method with good results, especially as building submarines, not a gloss surface in sight and generally ending up with a less than satisfactory finish with decals, until now.

So decal time for the GWH Toon F-35A. Hand painted in humbrol matt enamels, main body and wings. Time to see if Decalfix by humbrol does as it says on the tin Captain.

Some of you may already be using Decalfix, some of you may not know of its existence like me until recently, struggling with gloss coats on matt and satin finishes.

Pringles lid, many uses from using with superglue (as glue wont go off for a while) use toothpick to apply at your leisure, paint mixing and now a container for some Decalfix to soak decals in. Onto the decaling, brush Decalfix sparingly onto area for decal, hold decal backing with tweezers, as decalfix an irritant, gently brush the decal on and into place, remove surplus with tissue and apply a fine covering with brush, again wiping with tissue and leave to set. The results, no visible carrier film and now ready for the sealing matt cote. So no need for a gloss cote to apply decals and the added hassle of getting your painted model back to its painted finish, other than the sealing cote. For me this works and will save me from having to gloss over the satin and matt finishes i predominately work with. I must say the toon plane was great fun to build and use as a tester for new skills. It doesnt take long to pick up the method of using decal fix, tweezers, brush etc and avoiding the temptation to touch the decal with your fingers. It simply washes from your brush with water and any that does get on your hands you wash off with soap and water.

 

Another tip ive picked up, if there is some yellowing to your decals due to age, put them in direct sunlight, in a window for about 4 days and the sun bleaches the yellowing and brings your white decals back to pure white, just ensure that you apply a thin coat of liquid decal film over them after to help keep them intact. When i tried this it worked brilliantly but i didnt put a coat on and the decals broke up but they looked good, lesson learnt LOL

 

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And finally the finish im after for my submarines, at last.

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All the best Chris

Edited by whitestar12chris
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