How to do weathering using enamel wash

January 31, 2013 at 18:25 | Posted in How-to | 8 Comments
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The enamel wash method will give your gunpla a dirty & weathered look while simultaneously filling the panel lines. What you will need is: enamel paint & thinner, paint brush, kitchen towel or cotton-bud.  Please note that the images below are not mine. I scanned them from Dengeki Hobby magazine. So here’s what you do:

1. Choose your color & thin your paint

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When choosing a color, the main point is contrast. When the model kit is painted with light colors (white, cream etc.), I tend to use darker colors for the wash (e.g. dark brown); and for kits painted in darker colors, I use lighter colors for the wash (eg. yellow-brown). Next you would want to thin the enamel paint to a consistency similar to when applying panel lines.

2. ‘Wash’ your model with enamel paint

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For this, you need a wide brush since you’re going to cover the entire surface of your kit with the thinned enamel paint. Doing this also fills up the panel lines.After applying the enamel paint, leave the parts for a minute or so for the paint to partially dry.

<Tip: I prefer to apply the enamel paint on each part separately, instead of on the assembled part like in the picture. This is because I had experience of the plastic parts becoming brittle and subsequently cracked after I applied the wash method on assembled parts.>

3. Wipe off the enamel paint

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After the enamel paint is relatively dry, take a cotton bud and dip it in enamel thinner. Then use the cotton bud to wipe off the enamel paint. The key point here is to NOT wipe everything cleanly. You’re supposed to leave some traces and smearing of the enamel paint to give that dirty & weathered look.

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The wiping direction when using the cotton bud is also important. You have to take into account the position of a particular part when the kit is fully assembled. A sideways smearing pattern looks less natural on a standing Zaku’s leg, for example. That’s why the wiping direction is facing downwards in the photo above.

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You can also use a kitchen towel soaked with enamel thinner and dab on the surface to get some kind of pattern, like in the picture above.

 

And that’s all there is to it! You can see the effect of this method when you compare the ‘unwashed’ part (left), with the ‘washed’ part (right). The one in the middle shows how it looks like right after step 2.

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Here’s just some of my own examples:

whogre-11 dwadge-13 mgdom-55

 

 

 

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GM Wagtail

September 17, 2011 at 02:42 | Posted in 1/144 scale | Leave a comment
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Introduction

The GM Wagtail conversion parts were a ‘free’ addition with the May 2011 edition of Dengeki Hobby magazine. All the parts are molded in white and you need a HGUC GM Type C kit to build it. The conversion parts essentially involve the head, shoulders, hips, backpack, forearms and lower legs. Also provided are a beam rifle and a half-shield.

Materials & Methods

Seam lines that needed to be fixed are at the forearms, lower legs, shoulders and beam rifle. I was a bit lazy & messy with seam line removal and some scratch marks still can be seen. No modifications were made to the body, but I modified the beam rifle a bit. I cut off the end of the barrel and the round scope/sensor thingy and replaced them with some spare parts from Kotobukiya’s M.S.G Weapon Unit 16 (Shotgun). I also decided to give it the naginata from the M.S.G Weapon Unit 9 (Sniper rifle).
Painting is a must for this kit, if not it’ll look horrible with different parts in white, cream & dark blue colors. I went for a Safari-esque color scheme. The chest,shield & feet were painted dark green & for the rest of the body I did a camouflage pattern using grey & sand color spray cans. I did the same for the weapons. Masking was done using Tamiya tape or blue tack. Finally I applied an enamel wash with dark brown + yellow paints before applying the decals & some light weathering effects.

Results

Discussion

Overall, it was quite a lot more work than I expected, especially with the masking. Plus I had to wait out for the rainy days (thanks to Typhoon No. 12) to pass by before I could paint. My only gripe with this kit is that the legs do look a bit short. Also, although several types of hands were provided, none of them were for holding a weapon on the left hand. Maybe Bandai doesn’t like lefties. Now that I’m done with this, I dunno whether I should continue with my long-abandoned Sinanju or start with my RG Zaku (White Ogre project). Hmmm…choices, choices, choices…

HCM Pro Geara Doga

September 23, 2009 at 01:06 | Posted in HCM Pro | 8 Comments
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I got this way back last year and it has been sitting in its box since. After I’m done with this one, there’s another 3 HCM Pro models waiting in line. Anyway, the Geara Doga has everything that appeals to me: it’s green, mean and armed to the teeth. Like most of my HCM Pro models, I felt compelled to add some panel lining. I also took it a step further by applying some decals on the shields and leg. After a generous coat of topcoat, I added panel lines and weathering via the wash method with enamel paints. And to top it off, I added paint chipping effect by applying some silver paint via a toothpick. For the photography, I used my recently constructed DIY softbox with a white background and my 50mm macro lens. Amazingly, all of this is done in a day. I can’t say the same for my ongoing project though, the VF-25S Messiah.  Hope you enjoy the pics

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