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1/32 B-17 paint masks?

8 replies
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  • Member since
    December, 2017
1/32 B-17 paint masks?
Posted by KyleBragger on Tuesday, October 30, 2018 12:03 PM

I'm wondering if anyone has any leads on 1/32 scale B-17 paint masks. Alternatively, maybe some generic masks for e.g. serial numbers, tail markings, bars/stars etc.? Thanks!

  • Member since
    November, 2004
Posted by snapdragonxxx on Tuesday, October 30, 2018 12:41 PM

If it is painting masks you are after then There are no deadicated sets that I know of.

However, using Maketar Masks you can put various sets together:


Eduard have sets of canopy masks and Kits world have decal sets and stencils sets


With the Maketar masks, I would go with the Kabuki paper masks rather than the vinyl (unless there's no option) as they have a much longer shelf life and you will be able to get quite a few aircraft out of the sets.


HK's B-17 kits are full of detail and I would take special care with the ball turret painting. Eduards masks are a must on that thing!!!! Don't rush and look at Eduards etched set for the nose section as well as The following to replace the kit parts and add extra detail


I could keep going, and you can spend more than the kit cost, but in the end it builds up to a superb.... and huge thing..... like my Lancaster is going to!




  • Member since
    December, 2017
Posted by KyleBragger on Wednesday, October 31, 2018 8:29 PM

Awesome. This is super useful. I also picked up "B-17G Big Bird modelling guide" by David Parker which looks great. I've got some kits world decals en route so that seems like a good starting point to figure out how to translate sizes, etc. over to either some of the existing mask sets that you've shared, or cutting my own.

  • Member since
    August, 2013
  • From: Michigan
Posted by Straycat1911 on Wednesday, October 31, 2018 9:34 PM

Other option is good old fashioned Bare Metal Foil. 

  • Member since
    November, 2004
Posted by snapdragonxxx on Friday, November 02, 2018 7:00 PM

to do a really good all over bare metal bird is very simple.

Prime with Stylnrez grey or white.

Use AK Xtreme metal Aluminium directly on to the primer. A white primer will keep the aluminium at the natural shade level that you see in the bottle, Grey will darken it a little.

Leave to cure and dry properly for a day. You can touch it within a few minutes if you need to, but I would just leave it.

once cured, apply a coat of AK Gauzy shine enhancer. This will protect the paint . Contrary to popular belief and this is from my own experience. The paint does NOT like being masked, this is why I always put a coat of the Gauzy Agent shine on and leave that for a day too. Never rush these things. You have time!

Once the protective coat has dried you are OK to add stencil masks, insignia and also group colours, markings etc. Decals will go onto the Gauzy agent shine enhancer too as it acts like a gloss base.

Usually the paint used on insignia, group colours, markings etc would be a matt one, so once on, those need a protective MATT coat over the top.

You will get very good at masking building this bird.

That's the best way of producing a B-17G with a natural aluminium shine.

Of course, there were G variants with the Olive Drab colour for this you need Vallejo Model Air 71.316 N. 41 Dark Olive Drab and 71.298 M495 Light Gray.

The Mask sets I have posted are very good and I usually use them whenever I can. The Eduard canopy masks are really a must. they are all ready to go and do the job first time without messing!

It may be extra expense, but with the Maketar sets you not only save a lot of time, but you can get more than one aircraft out of a set of national insignia so they pay their way more than once!


I would like to follow your progress, so I hope you post on here with pics!



  • Member since
    November, 2004
Posted by snapdragonxxx on Friday, November 02, 2018 7:09 PM

I forgot.

Using the process I described above, here's some of the interior of the ZM Do335


  • Member since
    December, 2017
Posted by KyleBragger on Friday, November 02, 2018 8:18 PM

@ snapdragonxxx - wow! I really appreciate the detailed responses. The interior piece looks great. I'd never considered shooting gray primer for a NMF. All good stuff re: the masks and all that. Will post progress pics as I go, few things to wrap up first before diving in to this one.

  • Member since
    November, 2004
Posted by snapdragonxxx on Saturday, November 03, 2018 5:31 AM

When building these huge kits..... I have both F and G kits you quite often need to think outside the box and both backwards and forwards In regard to the build process.

First of all, you need to have a vision of the finished kit.... Just how you want it to look and then work backwards.

As you are well aware, these kits are serious money and I suppose that you have had a look through the kit and the instructions and the first thought would have been "WOW!"

Ok. You need to not only have a vision of the finished thing, but also the display options too. The top of the fuselage from the cockpit back to the radio op position can be left as a removeable piece which is a great option but then you have to think about the interior detail for the cockpit, bomb bay etc and also how the belly turret fits and maybe altering this with some alternative support.

now, HK, with all their kits have included an option of separating the machine gun barrels and bodies. This is a really great bit of planning as it means that it is very easy to get Master Models pack of barrels for this kit and do an upgrade very easily which just catches the eye and is a nice finish And adds a sharper and more defined edge which injection moulding just can't at this moment.

attention has to be paid to the nose where the bomb aimed and navigator are as the interior can be clearly seen right back to the bulkhead of the cockpit. Eduards interior sets are a boon here as well as the items above.

walkways and floors were often covered with a non-slip covering which can be done very simply with just plain black primer which gives the impression of a rough surface. No need to spend ages with paints and decals for a plywood effect.

have a plan and factor in flexibility..... Enjoy this monster!



  • Member since
    December, 2017
Posted by KyleBragger on Monday, November 12, 2018 2:30 PM
Appreciated once again, thank you! Will be sure to post updates.


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