10.5.11

Painting and testing a new effect

Since the last post I've been cleaning up the wheel pieces, painting random parts and all that. For a change I thought I'll do the priming a bit more smartly than what I've usually done. In many past projects I've just primed most of the pieces while they're still attached to their sprues, just because I've been lazy like that. After that I've just cut them off and fixed the missing patches. It's pretty quick, spraying over the whole sprue from both sides and letting it dry on its side for a while. That way they get to dry nicely, too.

This time I thought I'll do something more proper than that or another of my old methods: putting those pieces on a strip of tape and painting that way. The problem with that method is that if the tape is too strong, it screws the pieces up or if there's a bit too much paint, it leaves a stupid looking mark. A "hem" or another type of a bumpy surface which isn't nice at all.

So I cut short pieces of a metal wire and stuck them into the remaining half of the hex-base I did for my X-Wing. On the end of each of the eye-pokers I attached a ball of blu-tak (Mistake! That thing was way too old and didn't behave as that crap usually does). After the first set of pieces nothing got stuck anymore so I kept using my rig. I could've done better but maybe this is one of the mistakes I'm supposed to learn from. Oh well, I attached the pieces-to-be-painted on the thing and sprayed around.

Before the first layer

 
The top sides are now handily primed

The first set of pieces went while wondering how this could work nicely but the rest were just a breeze. That spray primer is really handy because after five minutes of drying you can replace the pieces and handle them. I got all the pieces I was working on painted in a bit over half an hour and most of the extra time went because I got stuck at the computer. I found something for my next BattleTech-related project...

After that, somewhat unsurprisingly, I went to paint all those pieces with Dunkelgelb. For some really strange reason my Vlad Tepes -inspired rig didn't work at this point anymore. All the sticks were loose and wobbled annoyingly, unable to withstand the air pressure from the airbrush. That caused some worse than mild swearing. As a fallback method I just stuck the pieces in pairs on strips of tape and went painting.
My idea worked nicely and was handy, but I have to improve my implementation a bit to make it more stable. Next time it'll be useful for a bit more than just the first round.


The hull halves, doors and the rest of the items got their first paint coat in a couple of rounds. Nothing dramatic to share, my propellant bottle just got too cold while painting and no paint came out of the airbrush after that so I had to postpone the painting for the next day. Maybe I just don't know how to work with these things. In any case, I'll seriously consider going for a compressor because airbrushing is pretty fun and works nicely as far as I can tell. Of course there are many things I don't have the skills for (what a surprise) so I'd still be using my paintbrushes quite a bit in the foreseeable future.
At some point I would be more than interested in trying how that device works while painting some 3rd Falcon Talon Cluster's Omnimechs, AeroSpace Fighters and Elementals 8) Painting a freehand green-gray camo shouldn't be anything too odd or difficult. All the jade green highlights and such would obviously be painted by hand, as I believe that's a lot faster than first masking 95% of the miniature just to get to paint a couple of small patches of its surface.




There is some yellow but the lighting conditions sucked

The main source of excitement on Monday evening was my silly idea of trying out the colour modulation. After the whole hull was painted with one flat colour, it's a simple thing to mix a bit of a darker colour to the same paint (in this case I added a couple of droplets of Vallejo Model Air's Grey Black in the same line's Dark Yellow paint) and sprayed that slightly darker paint on the lower parts of the lower hull to emphasize the "this is shadowed" effect. Should this thing work, I'll just mix a bit of white in the Dunkelgelb and then spray some of that mixture from Zenith on the model to create a sort of a "the sun is shining" effect. We'll see how that goes a bit later, but here's some work in progress material:


That's how I left the lower hull in the evening. The end result will be seen when it's complete.


The rest of the wheels and other things I've needed so far are drying here, waiting for the next step:


Next I shall connect the hull pieces together. I have to be cautious with those assault doors in the rear, though. After that I'll weather and pigmentify the lower hull a bit and only after that I'll assemble the wheels and the track. When that's done, it'll be painted, weathered and then I shall go for the rest of the pieces for the outer hull.
The reason why I'm going to do it like this because otherwise the tracks+wheels will be a pain in the arsch to fix, paint and weather nicely, I don't know why the instructions usually tell to do these things in a more difficult way. At least I think that's a more difficult way and many people I've read/heard about do the tracks last. I assume it'll be better this way.

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