Project Earthshaker Part 2: Painting and assembly  

Posted by CommissarHarris

Overall painting plan and method

In order to keep the battery relatively consistent, I will be doing three models at once. I find if I start one and finish it, then start another, by the last model in the run, that the models not look right together. My techniques change over time leaving the models looking different from each other.
1) Preparation and detailing
2) Undercoat:
3) Basecoat:
4) Top coat:
5) Mapping:
6) Fading
7) Decals
8) Chipping:
9) Matt Varnish
10) Filters: Burnt Umber; Black
11) Spot Filters:
12) General Rusting
13) Fuel and oil staining
14) Detailing

1) Preparation and detailing

The resin parts of the model were subjected to the usual method of cleaning resin parts. This model was washed in warm water with simple green used as the degreaser. It was soaked in the mix for a few hours before the parts were carefully scrubbed with a tooth brush. The parts were then left out to dry overnight on a tea-towel.

I then cleaned off the mould seams where possible. This is an older forge world model, and it can be a bit rough in the moulding, fortunately these particular examples are quite clean and don't require much in the way of clean up.

I am not doing any ultra detailing on this models, mainly because i forgot before priming and basecoating
. The plan was:
1) cast serial numbers on the gun carriage
2) breach block open on one gun
3) clipboard signage on the gun shield
4) riveting on the inside of the gun shield.

Maybe I will remember for the next battery. The few things I did remember were:
1) cut the top of the shield off;
2) glue and clamp the plastic barrel of the gun together;
3) once dry, file, then sand the barrel seams to make a smooth tube.

Preparation on the barrel seams and the top shock absorber make all the difference with this model

2) Undercoat: Halfords Grey Primer

With all of the bits clean and prepped I spray the parts with Halfords Grey primer. This is a car body repair primer and has no trouble sticking to the normally hydrophobic resin used by GW. It forms an intermediate layer between the hydrophobic substrate (the model) and the wetter GW chaos black spray.

3) Basecoat:

Undercoat as usual with Citadael Spray Chaos Black, working in even strokes 6-8in from the surface to get a light even coating.

4) Topcoat

The model was sprayed with a topcoat of VMA: Dark Yellow, being carefully to spray from the Center of each pannel outwards, leaving an arrea of light coverage towards the ed h to add a little shading.

After that using VMA: Arena Sand lighten off the model yet further in preparation for the mapping step.

5) Mapping

Mapping is adding irregular patches of a darker colour, off shade from the topcoat. I also added thinners to make it more of a glaze

A bit of acrylics "mapping". I just paint irregular patches of colors (use a #8 soft round brush) similar to the basecoat. The paint is a bit dilluted (I added glaze medium as well as water) and overlap over them. This is to obtain chromatic variety. The effect is completely exaggerated, but we are going to fix that.

6) Fading

Next step is to fade the islands back into the background, making them into subtle variations in colour.

After dabbing on the colour in large islands, spray a light coating of VMA: Arena Sand. I haven't thinned it at all, I just try to control the stream to get a light coating. This is in slight contravention to the guru who first spoke of this.
He thins the paint 80% gloss varnish. I may still try this.

having done this on the first two models, the learning point was to make the spots larger, paint continents not archipelligos. I will try this with the third arty piece and see if it looks better.

7) Decals

You will need:
- A sharp scalpel;
- Decal set fluid;
- tweezers
- decal sheet;
- half a paper kitchen towel, folded to a tab and wetted down;
- a dry square of kitchen towel;
- gloss varnish;
- Matt varnish;
- a brush

Step 1: planning
First step is to plan: What and where. I have done one of these guns before, years ago. I will be using the what and where from that, all krieg decals on the shield with serial numbers on the barrel and gun shield.

Step 2: Gloss foundation
Wherever you have chosen to put a decal, paint on a spot of gloss varnish. The reason for this? This prevents silvering under the decal film when its dried out.

Step 3: Cut out the decals
Cut out the decals you plan to use with a sharp scalpel, i usually take the opportunity to put in a fresh blade, the worst thing you can do is use a blunt one and cause a small tear in the carrier medium, as this will show up. The forge world decals are entirely transfer medium, making this quite important. Cut the decals as close to the print as possible to minimise the risk of carrier film.
Put these to one side.

Step 4: Fix the Decals
Wet the area you have glossed up with the decal solution, this degrease's the area and provides a slipping agent. Then put the decal, paper side down on the wetted out paper towel. This releases the carrier film from the backing paper. Leave it there for 45 seconds or so, when it's ready the carrier film will move freely over the backing paper.
use the tweezers to pick up the decal still on the backing paper. Hold the decal over the area you want the deal to sit on, then use the brush to move the carrier film off the paper onto the model.
If it isn't aligned quite right, wet out the area with decal set, then use the scalpel or brush tip to nudge the decal into place.
When it's all lined up nicely, use the dry piece of paper towel to dab on the decal and mop up the excess Decal Set.
leave this to dry for a few minutes

Step 5: Finish
Once everything is all dry, put a coat of Matt varnish over the decal.

Usually I fcuk up this step completely in a rush to get it all done. So here are a list of don'ts:
- don't ignore the gloss varnish step, you end up with a decal with silvering under the carrier film, this is bad, it draws the eye.
- don't use a saucer of water to wet off the carrier film, it leads to the backing paper comming off, and makes the decal almost impossible to handle
- don't put the decal over mat varnish, the decal won't stick. At all.
VMA: Vallejo Model Air
VMC: Vallejo Model Colour
VGC: Vallejo Game Colour
C: Citadael
AOC: Windsor Newton Artists Oil Colour
CW: Citadel Wash