The Finishing Touches
Apply your model's finishing touches with Testors and Tamiya and paints. Testors paints include the Model Master and Model Master II enamels, the Acryl line of paints, the Model Master lacquer paints and the Floquil lines of paints. All are available from Parma Hobby.
Safe for the Young Modeler
Acrylic paints or water wash-up paints are becoming more and more popular with modelers. These types of paint lack the harsh solvent smell and easily clean up with soap and water. Tamiya and the Testors Acryl lines are especially well received because they also have a wide range of colors. Many of the Testors Acryl paints do not even have to be thinned for airbrushing! And, more importantly, are much safer for the young modeler.
Getting it Right - the Scale Color Theory
Getting the color right has perplexed the perfectionist. For years, most modelers have primarily concerned themselves with full-size or prototypical color in terms of accuracy and availability. The manufacturers, for the most part, have collectively provided modelers with the more popular colors, usually matched to some paint chip sample or standard. In general, this has kept modelers quite content. But a growing number of conscientious modelers are becoming aware of the Theory of Scale Color.
This theory is founded on the observation that our planet's atmosphere is not, in fact, crystal clear.
Modeler and researcher, David Klaus, in this book The IPMS Color Cross Reference Guide, suggested an exercise for the modeler to test this theory. He suggests spraying flat black paint on two cardboard squares - one 12" x 12", the other 2" x 2".
Outdoors, in sunlight, lay the big card upright against a neutral background. Now back away, holding the small square at arm's length in front of you, until the two squares appear the same size. You will notice, while the black square in your hand remains unchanged, the larger square appears lighter, more grayish. This has been termed the Distance Effect. (Under consistent lighting, the intensity or tone of a given color will diminish the farther away from it you get.)
Although a fairly new concept to modelers, accomplished landscape painters have observed the Distance Effect for a hundred years or more. Foreground objects are rich and vibrant in hue, while the objects further back in the painting become more muted gray and less intense.
How does this apply to models? Well, if you hold a 1/48th scale airplane 12" from your eyes it is the same as observing the real thing 48 feet away. Naturally the Distance Effect causes the colors on the full-size aircraft to lighten or gray (as in the black square noted above), as opposed to the full strength prototype color applied to the 1/48th scale model.
Modelers may try achieving this de-intensifying coloring by adding various whites to the colors in various proportions depending on the scale in which one is working. Using flat, semi-gloss and gloss whites can effectively tone down the camouflage colors, imparting the proper scale effect.
- Synopsis of an interesting article from a new publication
by Testors covering the Scale Color Theory -
Clearly the Best!
One of the best glues for attaching clear parts is white glue such as Elmer's Glue-all. Glue-all is water-based and works best on porous materials, but it has enough holding power to keep clear parts in place. It also dries clear and doesn't mar plastic. Testor's Clear Parts Cement is also another way to clue clear model parts without leaving marks.
A Good Scratch Remedy
Scratch on a windshield? Wet sand the part with 600-grit paper, then 1,200-grit paper. Each finer grit eliminates the scratches from the coarser grits. Standing sticks and nail buffers work, too. Finally, polish several times with plastic polishing compound (Novus Polish #2).
Did You Know?
PARMA HOBBY offers a variety of hobby how-to classes in the Fall and Late Winter every year. These classes are geared towards the beginner as well as the expert.
Most Popular Brands
PARMA HOBBY either carries or can order most popular brands of... paint and model accessories...