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[BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

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[BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby mangozac » Mon May 16, 2011 7:51 pm

Copied from my blog post.

I recently had the sudden urge to paint up one of my Zeus Light Cruisers (oh my God it's nearly a year since I finished the model!). So I cast one up, washed off the release spray residue and cleaned it up - I was pleasantly surprised at how little cleanup work was required </shameless self plug>. Here's the part where I stuffed up:

Before painting the model it needs to be undercoated. I'm following Vaaish's guide to ship painting (but with different colours) so I figured I'd also do a black undercoat. The only black spray I could find in my supplies was some Super Cheap Auto Export brand Matte Black enamel which I was sure I'd used on models in the past, so after mostly assembling the Zeus model I stuck the three sub assemblies (hull, left fin, right fin) on wires and gave them a spray. Easy. It went on nicely without leaving any texture so I figured I'd done well.

24 hours later I went to start painting and immediately realised the problem with the Export paint undercoat: it rubs of easily. Very easily. Just handling the parts was making it come off over my hands. It seemed like it wasn't dry enough, even though I figured I've given it plenty of time. Anyway I tried to start giving it a "filler coat" of watered down black acrylic but found that the acrylic was drying with a "clumpiness" and texture I didn't like. So I decided to cut my losses and strip the model.

At this point I remembered I had an unused can of quality Tamiya surface primer sitting on my bench! It's grey but I'm doing a light colour scheme anyway so it won't matter...

So I dropped the Zeus into a jar of methylated spirits this morning before I went to work. I've has great success with metho as a paint stripper on models in the past, however I was aware of the risk of a bad reaction with the resin Zeus model. I can always cast another one so it's worth the risk. I arrived home tonight and fished the model out, finding that although a lot of the paint had stripped off (I reckon another 12 hours would have finished it off), the feared reaction had taken place and the resin had gone all soft. It's possible that the resin will harden back up, but in it's soft cheesy state I accidentally broke a few bits while scrubbing the paint off with a toothbrush so won't waste any more time on it.

In closing, two lessons were learned: use decent, known good primer, and don't strip Resin Addict kits using methylated spirits (they use the same resin as I use for my Zeus model).

Well I'm off to demould the replacement Zeus model. Pics can be found on the blog post ;)
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Re: Learning the hard way

Postby factor40 » Tue May 17, 2011 12:26 am

Sucks that it happened but if you take away a lesson, it's not a total bust.

By the way, those ships are really nice!
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Re: Learning the hard way

Postby Munkey Joe » Tue May 17, 2011 12:49 am

sounds like someone has a Hulk model now!!!
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Re: Learning the hard way

Postby Vaaish » Tue May 17, 2011 1:34 am

Ouch. Yeah, I tend to use the Armory black and White sprays or krylon gray primer. All three are pretty inexpensive and I've never had a problem with flaking although sometimes edges wear off as I'm painting and require a touchup.
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Re: Learning the hard way

Postby mangozac » Tue May 17, 2011 7:51 am

Thanks guys! At least I can always cast another one ;)

I'm planning to do cleanup and then undercoat with the Tamiya primer tonight, so that I can get stuck into painting the following night. I was going to take a trip down to the hardware to grab the standard brand of non-GW undercoat that people use here in Oz, however since I've already got the Tamiya and we kind of know it's quality stuff there's not much of a point.

I do actually prefer grey undercoats - that's how the latter part of my Tau army was done.
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Re: Learning the hard way

Postby Lane » Tue May 17, 2011 8:13 pm

For undercoats I'm a fan of Testors Camouflage Gray spray enamel model paint. The color is almost a light tan color rather than the typical gray primer (1:1 black and white). Light colors do not get the muddy look over cammo gray but unlike a white primer the mid tone colors do not get brighter.
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Re: Learning the hard way

Postby mangozac » Wed May 18, 2011 8:21 am

Well I assembled the new ship last night and gave it an undercoat with the Tamiya primer. Awesome stuff! Smells pretty noxious (identical to the Tamiya basic putty, which I assume uses the same base compound, simply thinned less) but works a treat. Of course it's the same colour as my grey resin so you can't really tell that it's undercoated :P

Zeus_painting_1.JPG


Got dinner at my lady's place tonight, but will hopefully get into some painting the following night. I'm thinking rather than painting it black and building up the shading from there I might be better off doing a heavy black wash, leaving the grey primer in all of the mid and high areas.
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby mangozac » Thu May 19, 2011 9:06 am

No painting progress yet, but I just thought I'd let everyone know that 48 hours after being plucked from its methylated spirits bath, the original ship has hardened back up. It's still slightly flexible, but I'd bet that after a couple more days it's back to normal. Unfortunately it's still unusable since during scrubbing to remove the remaining paint I destroyed a few details. Perhaps I can convert it to a damaged ship like MJ suggested...
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby mangozac » Thu May 19, 2011 9:08 pm

Progress! In retrospect it's not a great idea to basecoat a model like this in grey - it takes too many subsequent coats of black to get into all of the little recesses! Since Tamiya don't do a black primer probably the best bet if being really anal would be to use the grey primer and then airbrush on the black coat. I have read good things about Dulux matte black spray used as a primer/basecoat over on WargamerAU.

Anyway I did the first stages of painting tonight: after letting the black coat dry for a while (it took ages because I'd watered it down do much to get it into the recesses) I did three drybrushing passes (all Vallejo colours):
- Neutral grey
- 50/50 Neutral grey/white
- White

Looking good so far. The next step will be interesting; doing a wash of "Iraqui Sand" to add the colour to the monochrome preshading. Actually I'm thinking of doing a pass of Devlan Mud Ink before the lighter sand coloured wash. Any tips are welcome (especially from Vaaish, since this is his technique!).

Zeus_painting_2.jpg
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby Vaaish » Thu May 19, 2011 11:11 pm

I would probably do the lighter color first and the shade with the delvan mud. It works well to up contrast.
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby mangozac » Fri May 20, 2011 7:28 am

Will do ;)

One more question: how do you make a wash with the paint? Do you just dilute the paint with water or do you use a flow medium or something?
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby Vaaish » Fri May 20, 2011 11:42 am

just dilute the paint with your thinner mixture. I typically end up with on opaque colored fluid almost the consistency of water.
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby mangozac » Thu May 26, 2011 9:03 am

OK sorry for the lack of updates on this. I tried Vaaish's wash technique on the weekend but to no avail. All I ended up with was a space ship which looked like it had been sitting in the desert for ages:

Zeus_painting_3.JPG


The Iraqui Sand wash just settled into the corners, giving the opposite effect to what was desired. So to fix things up I gave it a heavy wash with Badab Black to get the recesses dark again.

Not one to give up that easily I attempted another Iraqui Sand wash. This time I only thinned it about 50% and also added s tiny bit of detergent to break surface tension, hoping that would stop the wash from pooling in the corners as much. This time it worked a bit better, and I followed it up with a heavy drybrush of the Iraqui Sand. Which gets us to my current point:

Zeus_painting_4.JPG


My next step will be a watered down Devlan Mud wash, followed by a light drybrush of the Iraqui Sand and then light successive highlights of white.
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby Munkey Joe » Thu May 26, 2011 11:09 am

I kinda like the first one BUT I do have an Ork fleet.... Very fitting for mine but not so much you...LOL

Glad to see your getting back with your BFG stuff. I love that stuff, and wished more people here did it.
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Re: [BFG] Zeus Light Cruiser

Postby mangozac » Thu May 26, 2011 11:47 am

Yeah like I said, I seem to keep coming back to BFG, so I must have an affinity with it...

The sandy effect would certainly be a cool effect for desert tanks and such! I wonder if real spacecraft collect much fine debris over time. From what I understand there are lots of tiny particles floating around which surely would collect as a ship moves through them?
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