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Thoughts on regular pencils for black color

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  • Member since
    February 2020
  • From: South Carolina, USA
Thoughts on regular pencils for black color
Posted by ChrisSC on Friday, February 26, 2021 7:20 PM
I’m curious if anyone has tried using a regular lead (graphite) pencil to put black color on a model and then clearing over it. I have had much trouble with getting color into very small areas such as window recesses on small scale ship models and was thinking trying this might be worth a shot. I can not cleanly paint these tiny areas with a brush and the finest pointed ink pens are often too large to not get ink where I don’t want it. I’m thinking a fairly sharp pencil point would give me great control but I’m not sure about how it would look or hold up to being clear coated.
I know there are pencils graded such as 8B which are very black. I would think if you were to blow off any flakes of graphite with compressed air and then clear over it that might work. I’ve never heard of anyone trying it so I figured I would ask here for opinions. To be clear I’m not thinking of coloring substantial areas but rather tiny details. I colored a square on a piece of painted styrene with a #2 pencil and sprayed clear over it and there didn’t seem to be any change in the color or any running. I’m trying to think outside the box. Thanks for any input you may have.
  • Member since
    April 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Friday, February 26, 2021 8:06 PM

I have used drafting pencils with soft lead for panel lines.  have to be super sharp. 

Thanks,

John

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Friday, February 26, 2021 8:25 PM

Not sure how small the window recesses are, but Tamiya makes an assortment of 4 pointed paint brushes, the smallest of which is sharper than the point of a needle.  Get your paint mixture just right, I'll bet you could touch the center of each recess with that brush and get black paint to just fill the recess cleanly.  Another possibility might be black Flory wash.  You just clean up the area around the window recesses with a sponge dampened with water afterward.  The rest of it will stay in the recesses.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

  • Member since
    August 2020
  • From: Lakes Entrance, Victoria, Australia.
Posted by Dodgy on Friday, February 26, 2021 10:52 PM

Hi Chris. I have never heard of anyone doing this before, but then no one had heard of colour modulation once either. Give it a try, preferably on a test piece, and see what happens. If it doesn't work, there's still Eaglecash's suggestion to fall back on.

I long to live in a world where chickens can cross the road without having their motives questioned

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Friday, February 26, 2021 11:06 PM

Fun old fact, in the era of raised panel lines; it was a technique to draw a sharp line along one side of the raised ridge in order to bring it out.

The same can be done with a recessed panel line except that the pencil leaves two lines; one along each edge of the gully.

The one failure mode I dealt with was that a clear coat usually would float up the graphite particules and make a mess.

 

Bill

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    April 2013
Posted by KnightTemplar5150 on Friday, February 26, 2021 11:35 PM

A few years back, I picked up a set of Molotow 'Blackliner' pens at the local Hobby Lobby. The set ranges in size from 0.4mm down to 0.05mm in diameter, which is a little finer than my pencil sharpener will allow. The ink is permanent, has held up well under both Dullcote and Glosscote lacquer, and seems to stick well to most surfaces. Works like a charm for eyes on 1/35 figures, might work well here, too.

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Towson MD
Posted by gregbale on Saturday, February 27, 2021 5:04 AM

GMorrison
The same can be done with a recessed panel line except that the pencil leaves two lines; one along each edge of the gully.

 Back in the bad old days when draftsmen (and high-school drafting class punters like myself) used actual pencils, we had a neat gizmo called a pencil-pointer, a little rotary thing about the size of a cabinet door knob that kept a needle-sharp point on the old 2H or 4H. I still use one to this day. (They're available, like everything else, on Amazon...and pretty cheap.)

That will solve that 'gully' problem and allow for a single nice clean line down the recessed panel in question.

Greg

 George Lewis:

"Every time you correct me on my grammar I love you a little fewer."
  • Member since
    February 2020
  • From: South Carolina, USA
Posted by ChrisSC on Saturday, February 27, 2021 8:14 AM
Thanks so much for all of your responses, they have been quite helpful. There are also a few products here I was not aware of.
  • Member since
    October 2019
  • From: New Braunfels, Texas
Posted by Tanker-Builder on Saturday, February 27, 2021 8:52 AM

Hi;

 For anything like that I use a 2H Draftsmans pencil that has been shaped to a two sided Chisel point. That way the lead sits right at the Bottom of the Groove. Now, when done ,I wipe the area with Plain water to get rid of graphite dust and Clear away. First coat MUST be a frost coat. Then Done deal!

  • Member since
    November 2008
  • From: Central Florida
Posted by plasticjunkie on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 7:20 AM

I use the #2 pencils for metal wear and to fill in the retractable oleo part in gears leaving a realistic metal finish. Prismacolor makes color pencils like black or dark brown without leaving the matallic sheen of the #2. Best results are when used over flat paint. Over gloss paint it doesn't work too well.

 GIFMaker.org_jy_Ayj_O

 

 

Too many models to build, not enough time in a lifetime!!

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: NEVER USE PHOTO BUCKET - IT'S A THREAD WRECKER.
Posted by disastermaster on Wednesday, March 3, 2021 11:20 AM

You can use a 4B lead (graphite) pencil on bare plastic (not vinyl). I actually do that to color tires (good control) and then airbrush them with testors dullcote. Works every time. Did that to my M20 years ago.

Enjoy!

https://i.imgur.com/RykCosD.jpg

https://i.imgur.com/Gcc59Dk.png

  • Member since
    June 2017
Posted by UnwaryPaladin on Thursday, March 4, 2021 5:48 AM

I would think the graphite would leave a more metalic sheen. I use soft pencils to simulate metal wear, but only after laying down the final top coat of clear finish. 

Perhaps black water color paint (the cheap kid sets would work) with a drop of soap to break surface tension would flow into the window recess. After it dries, use a damp q-tip to wipe off the excess.

  • Member since
    November 2008
  • From: Central Florida
Posted by plasticjunkie on Thursday, March 4, 2021 6:41 AM

UnwaryPaladin

I would think the graphite would leave a more metalic sheen. I use soft pencils to simulate metal wear

Ditto

 GIFMaker.org_jy_Ayj_O

 

 

Too many models to build, not enough time in a lifetime!!

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: NEVER USE PHOTO BUCKET - IT'S A THREAD WRECKER.
Posted by disastermaster on Thursday, March 4, 2021 12:00 PM

Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

Try it on a scrap piece or sprue.

The pencil color is a bit fragile until dullcoted but rock solid when dry.

 CLEAR   finish and a FLAT finish are two different things.

The testor's DULLCOTE LACQUER kills ANY sheen.

I use a 4B pencil for a metallic sheen too, but that's always the last touch.

NO overcoat of any kind to preserve a metallic finish.

https://i.imgur.com/Gcc59Dk.png

  • Member since
    February 2021
  • From: Silverton,Oregon,USA
Posted by TheModeler on Friday, March 5, 2021 8:48 PM

Dodgy

Hi Chris. I have never heard of anyone doing this before, but then no one had heard of colour modulation once either. Give it a try, preferably on a test piece, and see what happens. If it doesn't work, there's still Eaglecash's suggestion to fall back on.

 

I think he said he already tested it on a piece of painted styreneTongue Tied.

Thanks,TheModeler(Novice Mode{Just for nowWink})

ON THE BENCH(My first ones):

-1:25 AMT/Round2 1969 Yenko Camaro(40% done)

-1:72 Atlantis Models Bell UH-1B Gunship Helicopter (20% done)

In the stash:

-1963 AMT 1/32 Corvette Stingray

-Tamiya Mitsubishi A6M3 "Hamp" Zero,1/76

-Atlantis Models BELL Firefighter "Old Smokey",1/76

  • Member since
    July 2003
  • From: NEVER USE PHOTO BUCKET - IT'S A THREAD WRECKER.
Posted by disastermaster on Saturday, March 6, 2021 12:24 PM

ChrisSC
I colored a square on a piece of painted styrene with a #2 pencil and sprayed clear over it and there didn’t seem to be any change in the color or any running. I’m trying to think outside the box. Thanks for any input you may have.
 

 
Clear is the difference. Clear is NOT flat.

https://i.imgur.com/Gcc59Dk.png

  • Member since
    February 2010
  • From: New Jersey
Posted by 68GT on Sunday, March 7, 2021 8:21 AM
I'll paint a black base and then color gun barrels with graphite. If I'm feeling lazy I won't shave the graphite down and will just draw on the black barrels.

On Ed's bench, ???

  

  • Member since
    April 2020
Posted by Eaglecash867 on Sunday, March 7, 2021 10:16 AM

I have a 50 gram bottle of ultra fine graphite powder that I use for gun smoke on aircraft as well as giving things a metallic sheen.  Its enough for several lifetimes of modeling probably, but its really easy to use.

"You can have my illegal fireworks when you pry them from my cold, dead fingers...which are...over there somewhere."

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