Jump to content

WWII RAF Coastal Command & RN Fleet Air Arm Colours (AK11728) 3rd Generation Acrylics


Recommended Posts

WWII RAF Coastal Command & RN Fleet Air Arm Colours (AK11728)

AK Interactive




It’s been a while since we’ve reviewed any products from Spanish Paint & Weathering company AK Interactive, but they haven’t been sat idly twiddling their thumbs.  They’ve been working on a new range of acrylic paints, which they refer to as third generation acrylics, aiming for excellent coverage, what they describe as awesome grip, and a promise of no clogging of your airbrush if you paint using one.  They also state that they’re great for use with a paint brush undiluted, but they should be diluted with water or their own thinners if using with an airbrush, which I’ll be testing later with my usual devil-may-care semi-skimmed milk thickness being the goal, and using Ultimate Thinners as my usual thinners of choice.  Each pot arrives in a 17ml dropper bottle with sharp contours at the shoulder and a cruciform profile to the white screw-top cap, which is also knurled near the bottom to improve grip further.  The labels wrap around the body of the bottle giving general information about the new range, plus its name and product code near the top, and a bar code along one short edge.  Overall, it’s a nice look, but that’s not why we’re here.




The set arrives in a cardboard box with a clear plastic inner tray containing six bottles of paint to which I’m going to add glass beads, as I like those because they make paint mixing easier.  The design of the packaging is simple and based on an overall white theme, with a slightly retro font on the front that is a little hard to read.  The usual orange AK logo with the negative silhouette of an AK-47 in the centre is prominently displayed, as well as the Air Series logo that refers to the fact that this is an aviation set, not an airbrush specific set.  That’s something that could be clearer.  The 3G Acrylics brand logo is also present, with the product code above and the strapline “Scale Reduction Factor” below.  This refers to scale colour, which can be a divisive theme, although I’m personally OK with that.  Essentially, it refers to the perceived lightening of a colour applied to a scale model, as if seeing it through “scale air”, or aerial perspective, which reduces the saturation of any colour over distance, a well-known technique used in art, especially to depict the effects of distance in scenery and other distant objects.  Some folks may not subscribe to it however, and that’s ok too.


The set includes the following colours:


AK11844 RAF Sky

AK11848 RAF Sky Grey

AK11849 RAF Dark Slate Grey

AK11850 RAF Extra Dark Sea Grey

AK11868 White (FS17875)

AK11029 Black




The first item of note is that this set includes both black and white.  Is this going to be a theme, as with one or two other brands that will leave you with masses of unused duplicate bottles of paint?  Well, we’ve got five larger sets of between 6-8 bottles per set in for review, and this is the only one that includes black and white.  That’s a good thing from a duplication and waste point of view, and also makes it an ideal first set to get for your average Britmodeller so that you can use those colours to lighten or darken other colours.  Also, don’t forget D-Day stripes, which were a thing in the summer of 1944 and were definitely black and white.


Now we need to put some paint on a “model”.  I’ll be using plastic spoons, so please accept my apologies that it’s not a WWII FAA subject.  I’ll also be priming everything with Alclad Grey primer, which is what I’m using at the moment.  I’m a firm believer in priming models to improve adherence and harmonise the colour and texture of the model before painting.  I’ll also do a quick test without primer to test this fêted adhesion they talk about, which will be tested by burnishing down some Tamiya tape then ripping it off in a careless manner – think waxing strips if you’ve ever seen that happening.



In Action Through an Airbrush



The paint leaves the bottle quick thickly, and I’d imagine that brush-painting would require a little thinning to keep the brush-marks to a minimum.  For airbrush use they need to be thinned quite a lot, so a little goes a long way.  As I write this I’ve sprayed out three colours and had no problems using the Ultimate Thinners, although I’ve put too much in one, which has made coverage slower.  Coverage is best achieved by light coats, starting with a mist coat so that the paint doesn’t bead on the surface.  I read somewhere that this is the best way to spray them, but I can’t find that anymore, so I suspect it was on their site.  The paint is pigment dense, as advertised, and goes down well on a prepared surface, which I keyed with a light sanding with a fine stick.  It also covers well on un-primed surface which was also keyed in the same manner.  Talk amongst yourselves now while I finish spraying out the other colours and brush them out on the other side of the spoons.  I had a few issues with the white, which could do with being a little more pigment dense, because by the time you’ve thinned it down, it’s a little translucent.  It took several coats to complete the spoon in the photo, and if you look really closely you will still be able to see a little of the primer through it in places.  It’s entirely possible that I’ve over-thinned it, but I don’t think I did.  I’ve been wrong before though, so I’ll leave it to you to decide.  Now I’ve finished, I can report back that all the colours are nice, spray out matt, and with the exception of the white, they cover well. 


In Action with a Paintbrush



I’m not a brush painter.  The only time I pick up a paintbrush is for detail painting, weathering, or for a review like this one.  I’ll be using an AMMO #6 Synthetic Filbert brush for this job, as they’re a reasonably wide brush but without sharp edges, so when laying off to reduce brush marks, it doesn’t leave tramlines.  At this point I’ve given each spoon one coat, and they all seem to have a very slight satin sheen.  What is surprising in a good way is that the Sky, Sky Grey and Black were very dense, and could probably be left at one coat, although I’m going to give the Sky Grey another coat because I can still see slight variations in tone.  The other colours have covered pretty well, but you can still see the white plastic through, and that’s not bad at all.  Now all the remaining spoons have their second coat, they’re pretty good.  Only one spoon needed a third coat, mainly because I put more paint on before it was properly dry, so it pulled the first coat up in a few places, so you can blame that one on me.  I’m really impressed with the coverage, and managed to get a reasonably smooth finish, even though I’m by no means an expert.  In daylight the paint looks good, again bearing in mind my inexperience with hand painting things.



In Action - Conclusion

Each spoon has been scratched now, and while the paint does lift with the passing of my thumbnail, there’s not an acrylic around that wouldn’t suffer the same and probably worse under those circumstances.  The primed airbrushed spoons survived the scratching slightly better, but the hand painted spoons stood up pretty well.  These acrylics are at the strongest end of the spectrum, but you must prepare the surface properly, as the paint just rubbed off on a spoon I forgot to prime.  Whilst not as shiny as your average spoon, a slick model surface that may have finger oils or mould residue won’t hold any kind of paint very well.  I also sprayed out a couple of spoons without primer, and where I hadn't quite managed to get the buffing stick in, the paint didn’t stick well.  Again, that’s to be expected.  Where I did prep the surface however, the un-primed spoons took the paint very well, and it appears that it is almost as well adhered as the primed spoons.  That should prove interesting to those of us that don’t like to prime.  Buff your model, and as long as the colour of the styrene is uniform, you should be able to cover it in a few coats with confidence.


The next test is to see how they cope with masking tape.  Using a 18mm roll of Tamiya kabuki/Washi tape that you can get at most model shops, I burnished the tape down firmly and left it for a while to get a good grip.  Then I ripped off the tape with abandon, as described above somewhere, and there wasn’t a bit of lifting evident on primed airbrush paint, or the un-primed hand brushed paint.  Only the RAF Dark Sea Grey had a very slight (barely noticeable) colour change thanks burnishing of the adhesive into the surface, so that’s all gone very well overall.  The fact that the un-primed spoons survived unaffected says more about the adhesion of the paint and the value of micro-keying the surface than I ever could.


From your side of the screen the colour of the paints is difficult to gauge because 99% of the screens out there haven’t been colour calibrated, but on my ageing Samsung panel the colours appear almost identical to the spoons in my hands right now.  They also look good to me from an accuracy point of view, but I’m not one to obsess over colour and certainly wouldn’t be confident about a shade that has been decided upon by looking at a black and white photograph or an aged chip of paint.  I also wouldn’t know how to measure a colour on the Munsell scale, but to my untrained eye they look ok.  I do have an Art A Level if that’s any comfort! 😊



Final Conclusion

I like these paints in use, their bottles are also practical and attractive, although I’m not massively keen on the font used on the box artwork.  It reminds me of WordArt, but as that’s immaterial, so we’ll ignore it.  There’s a whole range of these colours available for the aircraft, AFV and other modelling genres, and we’ll be reviewing some other sets soon.


Highly recommended.




Review sample courtesy of



  • Like 3
Link to comment
Share on other sites

16 hours ago, dogsbody said:

Dang! I just bought a load of AK Real Color RAF paints. Oh well!

I'm sure they'll do just as well, but they're a slightly different formulation akin to a synthetic lacquer like the Far Eastern companies make. :)

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...