Dlinker's Things-To-Be-Done Thread

Time for some holes to be poked in the methods I use to complete a kit. Or to finally have a WIP thread.

To start things off, here’s something I was working on earlier with enamels, the results of which will be used in the next build after the Dynames (that’s taking way too long to complete). Let’s see who can guess which spoon was painted using enamel thinned with Testor’s Enamel Thinner and which one was thinned with Tamiya Lacquer Thinner.

I’m wondering about the texture too. Looks grainy. Spoons were primed using Vallejo Surface Primer and paint used was MM Gloss Black.

I never used lacquer thinner to paint. But I think it’s the one to the right that you used it to thin the paint with. Because it seems to have more of an smoother finish than the other one.

That’s one vote for the spoon on the right. It was a smoother finish so it will be interesting to see which one won’t feel sticky tomorrow night.

If anyone’s wondering why I’m doing the test, it’s because I want to try out enamel metallics on this next build to see if they really do look better and are easier to spray. Also, supposedly, lacquer thinner gives enamels a better finish when used with an AB so I’m testing out two things.

Right now, with Tamiya Acrylic metallics, only the Gun Metal seems to spray easily. The rest need the needle pulled back more than usual when being sprayed or else nothing comes out. Me thinks I’m either not thinning them enough or the metallic flakes are simply too big for the .3mm needle.

If you’re using gloss black, i think you should add a little more thinner to your ratio. It should look “wet.” Lay down a mist coat to gain some tack on the piece and then go over it with more paint in like a minute. Don’t go back over it once it looks wet as the air will “flatten” the look. That high gloss look makes the metallics shine better.

I kinda think it’s the spoon on the left that was thinned with the Lacquer thinner. Not really sure why. That is just what my gut is telling me.

And also, good to see that you made a WiP thread man.

@Squee, an interesting observation and one I’ll try this Saturday. The mixture there was essentially 1:1 so perhaps I’ll add a few extra drops of thinner and make it a 1:1.5 mixture. That may explain the grainy texture too. I sprayed it using my usual method of laying down the tacky coat --> medium coat --> slightly heavy coat. I should try doing it like how I did with a clear gloss coat earlier: tacky coat --> sweeping heavy coat until it’s shiny and mirror-smooth under a light. Thanks for the input, it’s much appreciated.

@thwalker13, that’s one vote for the for the left spoon. I don’t think anyone else will chime in so I’ll pronounce you as the winner! It was indeed the left spoon. Looks like your instincts are sharp too, haha.

I’m hoping this WIP thread will be another helpful resource that anyone can use in this forum. The side-benefit is that I can improve the methods/techniques I’ve been using since starting the hobby last March because I know I have plenty to improve upon. Also, maybe this will show that my kits don’t just get completed out of thin air, haha.

One thing I noticed about lacquers is that it doesn’t take much to vent the stuff out. I used a fan behind me to blow air out of the door and it was enough to minimize the fumes. I’m still going to wear a respirator though, since I like being up close with the parts being sprayed.

I think your WiP thread will be a very helpful tool for everyone. I know I am going to pay close attention to it. And I can’t wait to see your next project.

I just felt that the left spoon was it. Call it the force guiding me I suppose.

That’s it no more quizzes for me! lol. And i’ll be looking forward to all the information from this thread also.

Haha, but quizzes help hone your eyes.

I went and checked on the spoons to see which one was still feeling sticky. Both spoons were still feeling sticky, but the one that had lacquer-thinned enamel feels less sticky compared to the enamel-thinned spoon. Maybe there is some truth to the claim that lacquer thinner shortens the curing time for enamels.

I think I’ll do it on this next kit to see how it goes. I have to make sure to prime first, and prime a nice coat to prevent the paint from damaging certain parts.

Now, you’re probably wondering why I’m bothering to use enamels with lacquer. I myself have said it before that it defeats the purpose somewhat and that if using lacquer thinner, why not go all the way with lacquer paints. The answer is this: convenience and marginal cost savings. I have the enamel paints and my nearby hobby store stocks plenty of them. No need to spend again and wait for paints to come when I can readily use what’s available. Plus, I really do want to see how enamel metallics look when airbrushed. This is all just speculation, but I think enamel paints are easier to work with than lacquer paints since mineral spirits can clean them with little to no odor or damage. Just less hassle for me, not having to worry about a strong solvent hitting my skin.

I am always too lazy to make tutorials, so here’s a link from MVM on how to spray Gloss black. It’s really the best way to make your metallics shine.


The only thing you need to note that would be different for you is that enamel doesn’t glaze over/cure as fast as lacquer so you need to get it nice and glossy in 2 coats. Otherwise you run the risk of paint running.

Aha, that’s pretty darn close to what I did when I was gloss-coating some parts on the Dynames. Well, same concept with the tacky coat and then spray the part until it becomes somewhat reflective. What I need to work on is getting that finish in one go, then leave it be. No more of that minor touch-up stuff after.

With the spoons earlier, I didn’t do that at all. I was actually surprised I covered an entire spoon with only eight small drops of paint and some of it got stuck in the plastic cup I was using to mix so less than that was poured in the AB.

Can’t wait to try it out tomorrow. I think I’ll stick with lacquer thinner for it for now. Thanks for the rather informative and well-done vid. Love it when examples are that clear-cut.

I decided today to do some more practice on some items I’m going to try out on the next build and put aside practice on applying gloss black enamel until tomorrow.

First up was practice on scribing panel lines. I learned plenty when I did it for the Delta Plus and Dynames, but I realized after painting and panel lining that the lines were too wide and too deep, not to mention kinda sloppy as well. Last week, on a whim, I again googled up how to scribe panel lines and found another method that seemed like a better fit for me. Essentially, it involves plotting the potential lines out using dots (either with a pencil or with a needle) then connecting the dots using a guide. Compared to before where I drew the lines and then placed Dymo tape as guides, this one took less time to prepare because it didn’t really need Dymo tape. Instead, I used my small metal ruler so I was able to get the scriber on the desired spot quickly. Also found a good method of joining the different directions of a line together without much risk of unnecessary damage and it involves placing the tool at the end of one line, then scribe from that point, and so on. That troubled me often before and I had to fill those mistakes.

Another thing that I wanted to change up was the tool set. I used needles of various sizes, a slightly blunt hobby knife, and a Tamiya P-Cutter II. It dawned on me that this could have been why my lines were too deep (scored the lines too deep with a knife and needle) and too wide (P-Cutter scores trenches on a surface and combined with a deep initial score, the resulting line can end up being too wide). So I skipped the needles and P-Cutter and went with the hobby knife plus a Squadron Scribing Tool I bought some weeks ago since I wanted to try it out. Here are the results. I did some testing to see how many strokes will work best (marked on the pic), but I won’t find out until I paint and gloss coat. Partway, I decided to skip the hobby knife and use only the Squadron (again marked on the pic).

I’ll get to practice applying enamel gloss black on these tomorrow since the primer should be set by then.

Speaking of paint, I got impatient and decided to also practice on spraying enamel metallics using those spoons. Choice of colors are: Chrome Silver, Anthracite Gray Metallic, German Silver Metallic, and Steel. Here are the results:

I think I need more thinner for Chrome Silver due to the larger dots of paint coming out of the AB, along with a good wet coat, but it looks nice. I wanted to see what happens if I used mineral spirits to thin so I did it for the German Silver. It certainly behaved differently, almost as if no paint was getting sprayed at all. An unexpected benefit of the mineral spirits is that it allowed for an easy wet coat; After the paint session, I touched the spoon and it was stupidly smooth and very reflective compared to the others. I won’t be using mineral spirits, but it was still nice to see. Anthracite Gray was difficult somewhat because it’s a dark metallic, darker than Gun Metal, and the only noteworthy thing is that the resulting paint job was somewhat grainy in texture. Steel caught me by surprise because it kept sputtering in the AB and the results were very rough and grainy. I probably needed to thin it more than 1:1 ratio. I have an acrylic version of it so I’ll give that a try too, in case the enamel version is too uncooperative.

Great looking tests my friend. The scribing of panel lines is one thing that I really want to attempt in the near future. What material did you use for that? It looks like Pla-Plate but I am not 100% sure.

Thank you, good sir.

And your instincts are right once again: it is Tamiya PlaPlate. Could have used Evergreen since it’s the same thing, but I ordered this variety pack already so I figured to use it. The 1.2mm sheet is perfect for practicing panel line scribing since you can score it deeply without risk of running through the plastic. I have two more pieces available and I’m thinking of trying out curving lines on them. Kinda have a plan to do some Turn A style panel lines on a curvy kit (probably on the upcoming HGUC Gerbera Tetra) later on.

I was doing some more thinking on the metallics and came upon the decision that I will be trying out MM Metalizer paints as well. Which means more spoons to paint later today, then a visit to the hobby store tomorrow.

Then, finally, it’s time to start de-nubbing the parts.

Wow! that’s some good looking scribing work Dlinker. I’m interested in this method your using also, I need to try it out.

Also looking at you and Thwalker13’s tests, I’m getting that big build feel from what you two are posting. So This is another one I can’t wait to see more of.

Thanks for the compliment, jaqio. I thought it was the best scribing I’ve done ever, haha. We’ll see later on in the week when I start washing those lines how they stack up.

Once you’re ready to try it out, practice like there’s no tomorrow. It’s like de-nubbing; you’ll start with one method and after a while, you’ll either find a new method or change it up so that it’s perfect for you.

As for the build, ehh, probably not so epic. It’s an HG kit I’ve already done before, but I’m painting and customizing a bit since the first kit was a straight OOB build. I’ll lay out the plan this week.

Jaqio is kinda right on my part. I’m leading up to a big build. I do have a question Dlinker, have you tried scribing on a spoon?

Haha, I’m a bit burned out on big builds after doing so much on the Delta Plus and Dynames. I want to work on something a bit more straightforward this time that involves very little masking…

As for your question, my curiosity was piqued so I just tried scribing a spoon. Here are the results:

I used a strip of Dymo tape as a flexible guide since it’s a curvy surface. The lines there are after 20 strokes with the Squadron tool, which isn’t unusual since the spoon’s plastic feels harder. I realized I could test the width using a pencil and it seems to be around .2mm, judging by how my .3mm pencil couldn’t reach the bottom of the line, only the edges.

In other news, I did not do any painting on those test parts today, partly because I wanted to test out using lacquer gloss black for quick curing times (assuming the hobby store has them) and to see how it goes on a surface primed with Vallejo Surface Primer. I tried out Tamiya Liquid Surface Primer as a non-acrylic primer and while it worked well, it was too much of a hassle due to how hard it was to clean up after. I cleaned up using Tamiya Lacquer Thinner so maybe the hardware store stuff is a better choice.

Aside from that, I was able to clear coat the Dynames’ rifle. That means the kit will be completely finished this Thursday at the latest. Ugh, took too much time on it.

Hmm, seems like for ideal testing it would be better to use some spare parts or pla-plate to get an accurate feel of scribing. Good to hear that the Dynames is nearing completion. Can’t wait to see it.

Yeah, you’re better off that way than relying on spoons. Luckily, Evergreen styrene sheets are readily available on most domestic online hobby stores (and brick/mortar stores as well) so no need to order from HLJ.

There’s one thing I forgot to mention about scribing lines: appearance. I’m aiming for really skinny lines with sharp edges on this next build, but if you prefer lines that have rounded edges (such as those already available on the parts), sanding on the actual line itself using needle files or scoring a bit with a P-Cutter may be needed. Not sure if that made sense.