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DocRob

Mig-31 from AMK in 1/48 - The grey Beast

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7 hours ago, 1to1scale said:

I approve! Great work!

A big muchas gracias to the inspirator to this painting method. Your A-7 laid the path for my Mig treatment.

Cheers Rob

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After four hours of scratching away the masking fluid out of the panel lines, I have to make a break. The way, I wanted to get the finish, turned out to be a painful and time consuming way, but the results are worth it, I think.
One half is done, the other is for tomorrow :icon_eek:. As you can see; I got some unwanted scratchmarks as well, but these will be addressed later. First I thought about dabbing on some paint very carefully, but then decided, that I will try to sand these areas with a very fine sanding sponge in the direction of the airflow.

Cheers Rob 

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Looks great Rob. I'm sure the scratches will be less obvious after a panel line wash and weathering.

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Thanks Gus, one way or another the unwanted scratches will be addressed. I hope the later to apply wash will not be to harsh contrast wise, the panel lines are very well accentuated on the Mig.

Cheers Rob

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Very interesting finish Rob, most exciting to follow you progress . Thank you

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Thanks Martin, I don't try to replicate something from pictures with this build, instead, I use my imagination and I have no idea, how the Mig will look in the end. By reviewing the pictures, the beast looks a little like made out of marble, or something lying underwater :D, but I hope, in the end, I will have a convincing finish.

Cheers Rob

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As far as getting masking out of panel lines, I rubbed with my fingers, used white tac, masking tape, and an old paintbrush cut about 1/8 from the ferrule so it’s a little scrub brush. 

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10 hours ago, Martinnfb said:

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Thanks for the pic Martin, It looks like they made that bird looking like mine :D, but they finished panel lining and decaling.

Cheers Rob

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5 hours ago, 1to1scale said:

As far as getting masking out of panel lines, I rubbed with my fingers, used white tac, masking tape, and an old paintbrush cut about 1/8 from the ferrule so it’s a little scrub brush.

With normal liquid mask, there are a lot of options, like you said. I tested some of them with my Micro-Mask stuff and it didn't work. It is really hard to remove, but for my purpose it's ok. The stuff is thinner than Maskol and easier to apply in very fine patterns. There is no way around the toothpick method and for small residues I use a stiff flat brush. 

Cheers Rob

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The Mig is not a tailsitter anymore :D. I managed to get the rest of the liquid mask off the Mig, a terrible task, as the Micro mask tends to get harder to remove as longer it's applied.
I sprayed the dark grey parts on the tail and the nose cone and some black patches around the canopy and now it starts to look like a big ugly Mig.

Cheers Rob

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After running into the problem that seemingly my Micro-Sol clouded my Klear coat, I managed to get the decals on. The kit ones behave ok are thin and good to work with, but I use only the stars and some bigger markings, as I use the wonderful HGW wet transfers for the stenciling. They have no silvering, no protruding decal borders, a matte finish, which seems to be tattooed into the surface.
Basically, I don't understand, why the crews couldn't learn their manuals on these modern jets, otherwise, there would be no stencils ;). On the Mig there are hundreds. I don't need a lot of stencils on my car or on my turntable.
Luckily the worst of the decals are on the underside, so that's how the big bird looks now from far.

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Back to the Mig, step by step, I apply the stencils. As much as I like the results, as painful is the process. It takes even longer, then with normal decals.
You have to cut every single stencil, apply it carefully with a little setting fluid, wait for some hours to remove the transfer film and clean off the glue residues with a dampened cotton swab. With the hundreds of stencils, you need some structure and discipline, not to miss a nearly invisible transfer film here, or forgot to put a stencil in the right place. 
The removal of the transfer film should be done very gentle, because it's easy to rip off parts of the stencil (believe me it happened to me, but I guess a heavy weathered Mig will not have factory fresh looking stencils ;)).
I do the stenciling in sections, which is really time consuming but safer and 3/4 are done.
Don't get me wrong, I'm fascinated by the product, the stencils are like matte printed onto the model, no shine, no borders, absolutely no visible thickness and no silvering. I will use wet transfers where I can in future builds and I have some sets for other planes.

In the next two pics you can see the quality of the stencils vs. the very good kit decals. The blue MIG-logo is a decal and has borders and shininess, as has the red number in the next pic
The grey rectangles in the first pic are wet transfers too, and they match my dark grey perfectly.

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Even large wet transfers like this are perfect after careful application. The chips in the middle are chips, no bubbles, because there is nothing to bubble :D.

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From far away, you obviously nearly can't see a thing of the work of hours.

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Cheers Rob

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Looks very good, Rob!  I have some HGW transfers for 1/48 scale 109's.  They didn't like anything but the smoothest surfaces.   The process for laying them tests my poor patience.

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2 hours ago, GazzaS said:

Looks very good, Rob!  I have some HGW transfers for 1/48 scale 109's.  They didn't like anything but the smoothest surfaces.   The process for laying them tests my poor patience.

I feel your pain, but when put on the model, they are just great, better than all the decals I ever tried. Patience though is the key to success with these wet transfers and I'm not very good at patience.
When I think about past jet builds with silvering stencils applied after many hours of good work as one of the last steps, to get an unwanted result in the end, I opt for the wet transfers and go through that pain. I always hated decaling, because of the possible fail potential towards the end of a build, but these HGW's are predictable in a way, if the surface is prepared and you follow the instructions you get what you ask for.

Cheers Rob 

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Phew, stenciling is mostly done. Only the weapons pylons and the missiles are missing, but this will be addressed later. After thousands of cuts, my bench looks like this and in between, I cleaned a little. It felt as if they put Tolstoy's 'War and Peace' on the plane, separated by sentences :D.

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Another Job, I was not looking forward to, is using wet transfers for the pink sealings on the canopy. Today I managed to apply the outer ones and the outcome will decide, if I do the inner ones too (the pic shows the seals still with transfer foil, which will be peeled of tomorrow.)

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Cheers Rob

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Death by a thousand cuts LOL :), I really like the canopy detailing. Very nice work overall Rob.

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14 minutes ago, Martinnfb said:

Death by a thousand cuts LOL :), I really like the canopy detailing. Very nice work overall Rob.

Hehe, so true :D. Let's hope the canopies stay clear, when removing the transfer film and the seals stay in place. I didn't dare to use Micro Sol on the clear parts, just water and a drop of liquid soap.

Cheers Rob

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I ran into some trouble lately with the Mig, namely with the canopy seals as I guessed it would happen. While removing the transfer film very carefully, I managed to rip parts of the seals apart. They are unbelievable fragile and while trying to put on some spare strips, messed up even more. The spare strips partly crumpled on the transfer foil. So in the end, the bad parts will be handpainted in the end and there will be no seals on the inside, as I used one of the inside transfers for one, I completely messed up on the outside. Maybe the normal decals would have been the better choice and if I totally mess up, I always have a second try with the non tinted version of the canopies. 

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While always waiting for the transfers to dry, I started on the missile and painting the large ones with Alclad Titanium which looked great, but adhered so bad, that I teared most of the colour off while removing detacked Kabuki tape. I will never use Alclads again, they are so fragile, some more some less. Titanium is among the worst and yes, I primed properly.
I only discovered the problem after completely masking two missiles, while correcting a misaligned tape. The middle shows the original Titanium look, the upper is stripped :(.

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After wiping off the Alclad, I sprayed the missiles with Xtreme Metal from AK. It's called Pale burnt Metal and looks Titanium like and has a nice shine. I hope it adheres better, but generally, I had some very good results with different Xtreme Metal colours and these are my go-to's for metals. 

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Speaking about metals, I painted the burner cans with different tones of Xtreme Metals, first Jet Exhaust, then a little transparent blue in parts, then highlighting with Titanium and toning down again wit Jet Exhaust. The cans will be refined with a dark wash and maybe some pigments later.

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Cheers Rob

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This is where the HGW transfers have failed in my history.  Not only areas where the paint surface is imperfect, but also areas where there is a seam. 

I imagine, if you had filled the seams between clear and solid parts, sanded them perfectly smooth.  Then, made the clear parts clear again by ultra-polishing, they would have worked.  Nature of the beast.

I too have given up on Alclad.  I've never had it peel from masking.  But the masking tape always removes the sheen.  My go-to metal paints are now Vallejo Acrylic Metal Color:

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They airbrush nicely and paintbrush well, too.  But if you are using them with a paintbrush, the drop you put on your pallet will separate quickly.

 

Keep up the good work, hombre.

 

Gaz

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8 hours ago, GazzaS said:

Keep up the good work, hombre.

Gracias Señhor, I try my best.

8 hours ago, GazzaS said:

I imagine, if you had filled the seams between clear and solid parts, sanded them perfectly smooth.  Then, made the clear parts clear again by ultra-polishing, they would have worked.  Nature of the beast.

Sounds like a cunning plan, to sand, fill, polish and whatelse on a clear part :D.

8 hours ago, GazzaS said:

I too have given up on Alclad.  I've never had it peel from masking.  But the masking tape always removes the sheen.  My go-to metal paints are now Vallejo Acrylic Metal Color:

I have had mixed results with Alclad, but masking on it never worked out. Like you say, some colours loose some of the metallic sheen and go dull and some, and Titanium is the worst, just peel, while looking at. 
Good to know, that your results with Vallejo Metallics were satisfying, but since they worked great for me, I will stay with AK's Xtreme Metals for now. These are definitely more durable than Alclads and have a great metallic appearance. As I never worked with Pale Burnt Metal, I hope that will not change with masking the missiles.

Cheers Rob

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The bad Mojo continues. Today I tried my patience while painting the pilots and had lots of trouble with the paints to adhere. The resin figures were properly primed before and I used colours which are frequently on my bench. 
After painting and repainting and reducing some gloss and mixing colours with different thinners, to enhance the adherance, while covering well enough, this is where I am. Don't judge too harsh, these guys are small in 1/48 scale. They look better in the cockpit, but I had better results with figure painting, even in this scale. 
I slowly run out of patience with all the amounting last minute problems with the build. Normally I would paint strip the pilots and try again, but I will leave them as they are and will always feel bad about it

Cheers Rob 

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They look pretty good to me for their size Rob. Is it just me or does the one on the right look like Kirk Douglas??

I'd second Gaz on the Metal Colour paints. They're easy to use and I've always got a good result with them. The pale burnt metal is especially good.

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Look good to me.  Then again, I'm still trying to master larger scales.

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