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White paint frustrations - HELP!


Michael Morris
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Whilst my main area of interest is spacecraft/rockets, I thought I'd post this query in the civil airliner section as the issues are the same - How on Earth do I get a nice even coat of white paint over a large cylinder.?

The secret seems to be getting a completely even base coat.

I've tried using white filler and white primer, but I keep missing imperfections and have to sand/fill them.  Using a dark base primer makes this much easier, but then I either get variations in the base coat or end up missing an imperfection then have to sand it out and have a dark spot that I just can't seem to get rid of.

 

I've tried using Mr Surfacer 1500 primer and Tamiya LP-4 as white base coats but any variations in the colour behind them always seem to show through, regardless of how many layers of paint I apply.

Help!

 

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I had to do some backtracking to find the brand of paint many modelers in the UK use when rattle canning white paint. Halfords seems to be the preferred brand. Local modelers can give you some specifics regarding how best to use it, but the impression I get is that you mist it on over several layers. Let it dry thoroughly between each layer. White and yellow are hard to get good results with, using an airbrush, unless you've practiced a lot and mastered the technique. Hence some who use airbrushes still seem to prefer rattle cans. Here in the US, Krylon appears to be the preferred brand. I have a modeler friend who swears by Krylon for painting gloss white on model airliners and he gets outstanding results. Hope this helps.

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Your local Halfords is your friend. 

 

I only ever use Halfords plastic primer which is available in white and grey. Tamiya primer is good stuff but Halfords is much cheaper and more readily available. For the top coat most UK airliner modellers, including me, use Halfords Gloss White, sometimes called Appliance White.

 

A rattle can is designed to cover a large area quickly and evenly. The drawback with rattle cans is that they only have two settings - on and off - and they need to be used with care. The standard advice is to practise on a scrap model before tackling your masterpiece. I always spray primer from the can but I sometimes decant the Gloss White into my airbrush depending on exactly what I'm painting.

 

I usually spray my airliners with an overall coat of grey primer to show up any flaws and give a uniform base colour. I then give the white areas a light coat of white primer followed by the top coat of Gloss White.  I use various grades of Micromesh polishing cloth to finish off the Gloss White.

 

That's purely my own way of doing a white finish - other (possibly better) ideas are available.

 

Hope that's some help.

 

Dave G

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8 hours ago, Michael Morris said:

No, not yet.

What advantages do they have over using an airbrush?

Well you

9 hours ago, Michael Morris said:

get a nice even coat of white paint over a large cylinder

Or any large area. It is what they are designed to do. As @Skodadriver said the only downside is the two settings, on or off.

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8 hours ago, Skodadriver said:

I only ever use Halfords plastic primer which is available in white and grey. Tamiya primer is good stuff but Halfords is much cheaper and more readily available. For the top coat most UK airliner modellers, including me, use Halfords Gloss White, sometimes called Appliance White.

The "plastic" bit of the name can be a bit misleading, in that it infers the ordinary primer isn't suitable for use on plastic - it is, and I've always used the ordinary primers. The "plastic" nomenclature is in reference to it's use for car bumpers, the paint  is more flexible (plastic) than the ordinary primer and less likely to crack when subject to minor knocks and dings - as my models don't generally do low level round supermarket carparks I don't see a need for this feature when painting them.  

Otherwise, I'd second the recommendation of Halfords primer and Gloss White. I'm lazy and use them direct from the can, as long as it's nice and warm you can get a good finish from them, not just models either, my living room fireplace surround had an Appliance White facelift a while back!

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Halfords Gloss White every time. Used to be called Appliance White until recently. Light coats, and let it cook off in the airing cupboard for a few days to ensure it gasses out. It's bomb proof, and if you need to strip it, use brown Dettol.

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So many people have already chipped in so I can only add my vote to the rattle can. I love my airbrushes with the exception of white airline bodies. The rattle can is just so reliable for this application. I chose from the Tamiya range for the final finish. Undercoat either Gunze Grey 1500 Mr Finishing Surfacer or Tamiya Fine White - also rattle cans. I do a lot of work to ensure very little in the way of filers and if needed use CA or CA/Talc. 

 

Ray

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I often use Zero paints pure white as a sort of white primer. It covers very well. You can either clear coat it for gloss, or spray the Halfords white straight over it. You'll get a really solid white coat either way..

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