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Painting White Metal


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Hi there.

I have not worked with white metal before and I would like a bit of advice  :piratebo5:

The build I am working on, the OcCre Spirit of Mississippi has loads of small small white metal parts such as chairs and tables etc.

As you can see the acrylic style paint that I had in stock is not clinging well.  That is after two thin coats.  

The back of the chairs haven't been painted  ;)

So obviously that isn't working  :angry:

So what is the best paint??  I am off to the model shop tomorrow so I can get what is advised.

Should it be the quality models acrylic or the Humbrol style metal paints

Thanks for any help

Mick

 

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Edited by Micklen32
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First off, you need to clean the metal, get rid of any residual oils leftover from the molding process and any contaminants from handling (mild dishsoap works well enough, rinse afterwards). Leave everything to dry thoroughly and don't handle the parts with your bare hands. As for paint, I would recommend that whatever you choose, first start with a primer. I'm a fan of Tamiya, myself, as it will go well with just about any type of paint, acrylic, laquer or enamel. The tamiya primer is dry enough within an hour or so, so you can paint overtop pretty quickly.

 

Let your paint dry thoroughly, then put a coat of sealant, like Testor's Glosscote, or Dullcote, to protect the paint. This will make it less prone to chipping, or wearing off corners etc if you need to handle the items.

 

Andy

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Ahoy Mick

 

This is what I would do.

 

Get some enamel thinner and a small brush and strip them back down to the metal.

 

Use a file and or sandpaper to clean them up. Use thick CA (super glue) to fill any voids.

 

Clean them with soap (must not have any hand softener, check ingredients for lanolin, Ajax dishwashing soap is my choice)

 

Let dry.

 

Cut the end off a round toothpick and using thick CA tack the flat side (cut) to the under side of the parts. You will want to snap the toothpick off when you are done so don't go crazy with the glue. This will allow you to paint them without touching them. Just put it somewhere that you will not see. Get something to stick the toothpicks into. A piece of heavy cardboard or foam works well.

 

Prime them. The guys are right, Tamiya is very good, better is Mr. Hobby, but really many other products will work. Just make sure it is a primer for metal. Testors is another excellent choice and so is Krylon if you want to spray. If you do spray, shake the can for no less then 10 minutes placing it in a container of warm water before using. (Not hot)

 

Check them and repair anything that shows up now (last chance), wet sand and re-prime any repairs. Let dry for 24 hours.

 

If you used enamel thinner to strip them, I would use enamel paint. It is more durable and does not have to have a clear coat. Acrylics should be protected with a clear coat.

 

Thin the paint. I would take the paint out of the jar. Drying inside the jar contaminates the paint leading to lumps and other undesirable effects. Use a straw, your stirring stick (did I mention to stir the paint really good. Do not shake, stir) and pull out a few drops. Use a tile, Aluminum foil, glass but not a paper product to put your paint on. Only bring out enough paint for a few minutes of painting. Add thinner. The paint should be slightly translucent but not so thin it runs all over. When you paint, you should see the brush strokes dissolve into the paint right after your stroke. Practice if you need it but not on your work. Start with the hard to reach areas, do the big area staring you in the face last. Try not to go over your fresh paint either, work away from the fresh paint. Plan the job. If you cannot get it now, get it on the next coat first. If you beefcake something let it go and move on. Once the paint dries wet sand it out. (wait 24 hours to fix mistakes) Plan to do no less the two coats, more is better. The paint needs to dry between coats.  If the paint covers in one coat, it is too thick and you will lose details. When you do a second coat over your first, the medium in the paint will reactivate the first coat. Do not work the paint (back and forth strokes). One stroke and move on, remember it is faster to come back with another coat then to do a repair.

 

When done put them in a box or somewhere where they are covered. I use a second shelf. This is the hardest part. “Leave them alone”. Once dry (48 hours) snap off toothpicks.

 

The furniture is a perfect choice to start with. Do not rush. You will be much happier later with the results if it takes a few days then rushing to get it done.

 

Good luck and have fun.  

Edited by JPett
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Advanced painting tips

 

 

 

Once they are dry get a darker color, If they are white I would use a light brown Acrylic paint

 

 

 

Dip the brush in the paint then wipe off as much of the paint as possible on a paper towel

 

 

 

Then gently stroke the brush over corners. The tiny amount of paint still on the brush will rub off highlighting the corner.

 

 

 

This will get rid of the stark, bland look.

 

 

 

Super advanced tips

 

 

 

After priming paint all the surfaces facing the boat  a darker color then your primer. Use acrylic.  This will cause a subtle change in the color of the final paint color creating a shadow effect. It needs to be barely noticeable but to your brain it will make it look more realistic.

 

 

 

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To add to what Andy and others have said which I agree with. I have also used gesso as a primer and arylic paints on white metal. The best bet is to spray but I don't know how to use an air brush...one day!

 

Wish you well!

 

Hopeful aka David

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Mick, since you have obviously started to paint and would like to start all over again, I would check with a paint store and buy some paint stripper. Again be sure all is clean. Then follow the good advice listed above (well may be not all, because I have a feeling that you don't want to get involved with airbrushing, etc).

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Thanks for all the answers, even the super advanced ones  :o

I have taken all the advice on board and I know it will help me so much

I do actually have an airbrush but unfortunately the area I used to paint in is not available to me at this time so it has to be brushes  :(

I am just in the process of putting the chairs and tables together prior to cleaning then I will no doubt soon be painting

Thanks again

 

Mick

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MSW is an amazing place.  I was just dealing with the very same issue of painting some cast metal pieces and the paint kept flaking off.  I came here looking for answer and once again got more than enough info to go back and tackle it again like a pro.  Thanks to all who make this a great place!

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MSW is an amazing place.  I was just dealing with the very same issue of painting some cast metal pieces and the paint kept flaking off.  I came here looking for answer and once again got more than enough info to go back and tackle it again like a pro.  Thanks to all who make this a great place!

 

You come more often, always something will be the interesting  :) 

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Thanks for the very good advice.  I would assume that you would paint metal parts cast in Britannia the same way.  IS that correct?  Since white metal is known to decay (flower) when it is in a case, I was told that a good paint would help to insulate the part.  I don't believe that you would get that insulation with a blackened part.  Can someone confirm or refute that?

 

Thanks,

 

Tom

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Hi, Tom! The alloy on the basis of zinc (white metal) is exposed to decay (flower) under the influence of the oxygen being in air. As a result of processing of white metal by Blacken It liquid there is a chemical process and on a surface of metal the oxide film of black color is formed. This film (if not to break it) protects a metal surface from contact with oxygen and serves as good protection against decay. Even better this film works if after blackening it is easy to wipe a detail linseed oil. Thus improves as well color of a detail - becomes more intensive black.

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As people have already said here, this place is fantastic, a mine of information   :dancetl6:

I am looking forward to really getting in to this build as I know the part I always think most difficult, planking the hull, looks to be the easy bit  :o

There is so much fancy work, white metal and brass work.  Loving it  :piratebo5:

Mick

Edited by Micklen32
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Ahoy Tom  :D

 

Those instructions would work for Britannia and I am sure, most metals. I always recommend testing first though,  not using the model as the guinea pig.

 

I have heard of this issue with white metal and also read that it was the reason some manufacturer's switched to the Britannia (whether that is true or just them promoting Britannia I do not know)

 

Although I did not mention this in the original post, thinning your primer and doing multible coats will make for a nicer finish. I generally will sand off most of the first coat and then re-prime, using the first coat as a filler.

Edited by JPett
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As people have already said here, this place is fantastic, a mine of information   :dancetl6:

I am looking forward to really getting in to this build as I know the part I always think most difficult, planking the hull, looks to be the easy bit  :o

There is so much fancy work, white metal and brass work.  Loving it  :piratebo5:

Mick

 

Really, there are many various technologies of processing of a surface of white metal and brass. However the majority of solutions for blackening of these metals are made on the basis of selenious acid.

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