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Vallejo Model Color Paint Question

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  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Vallejo Model Color Paint Question
Posted by PontiacRich on Saturday, February 11, 2017 5:12 PM

Looking for suggestions on my first set of Model Color paints.  I've seen lots of choices on Amazon but not sure what would be the best choice for mostly WWII Allied/Axis kits and Automotive models.

Thanks for the input!

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    September, 2016
  • From: Albany, New York
Posted by ManCityFan on Saturday, February 11, 2017 8:48 PM
I have only used Vallejo primer, but I do know that Model Color is mainly for brush painting, and will need to be thinned to use in an airbrush. Model Air is for airbrushing, and I have seen several posts of folks who love it, and a few who do not. I usually buy paints based on my next project. Pick a kit and see what it needs.

The Mrs. suggested I attend a "plasticholics Anonymous" meeting.  I think she is getting a little tired of dinner conversation consisting of "model, model, model".

 

 

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Saturday, February 11, 2017 9:02 PM

ManCityFan
I have only used Vallejo primer, but I do know that Model Color is mainly for brush painting, and will need to be thinned to use in an airbrush. Model Air is for airbrushing, and I have seen several posts of folks who love it, and a few who do not. I usually buy paints based on my next project. Pick a kit and see what it needs.
 

Got it.  Thanks!

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Saturday, February 11, 2017 9:04 PM

Ditto

Personally I am not impressed by Vallejo paints. Aside from the wide color choices (some are quite dubious though), and handbrushing decently (for an acrylic), I don't see the reason for the fawning by so many over this product. I've tried it and have had better results with other paints. But, if your wanting to try one of their sets, I suggest you find one that matches your subject interest areas. A WWII RAF color set is no good to you if you build modern Soviet armor, right?

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    September, 2016
  • From: Albany, New York
Posted by ManCityFan on Saturday, February 11, 2017 9:16 PM
Again, I have not tried Vallejo paints. I spray acrylics only due to ventilation issues. I have impressed with Tamiya acrylics. Even as a newbie, I find them to be very easy to work with, and have given me good results. If you want to see the types of paints (and other products available, like washes and pigments), check out Megahobby.com, Scalehobbyist.com., Squadron.com and/or Spruebrothers.com. All excellent vendors.

The Mrs. suggested I attend a "plasticholics Anonymous" meeting.  I think she is getting a little tired of dinner conversation consisting of "model, model, model".

 

 

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Saturday, February 11, 2017 9:30 PM

stikpusher

Ditto

Personally I am not impressed by Vallejo paints. Aside from the wide color choices (some are quite dubious though), and handbrushing decently (for an acrylic), I don't see the reason for the fawning by so many over this product. I've tried it and have had better results with other paints. But, if your wanting to try one of their sets, I suggest you find one that matches your subject interest areas. A WWII RAF color set is no good to you if you build modern Soviet armor, right?

 

I'm interested mostly because I am new to airbrushing and I've read they're easy to airbrush with.  I want to take at least one variable - paint mixing/consistency - out of the equation while I'm learning to airbrush.

Thanks for the input!

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Saturday, February 11, 2017 9:36 PM

And airbrushing acrylics certainly has more variables. Their Model Air paints are supposedly able to be airbrushed straight from the bottle. That is simplicity in itself. As many acrylics require flow agents and retarders in addition to thinner for airbrushing. And getting those ratios right is a matter of trial and error.

But... I can't speak firsthand about using the Model Air line because I never have. Hopefully somebody else here can provide their experience with that product. 

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    October, 2016
  • From: Somewhere in Ohio...
Posted by DasBeav on Sunday, February 12, 2017 4:02 AM

[quote user="PontiacRich"]

 
stikpusher

Ditto

Personally I am not impressed by Vallejo paints. Aside from the wide color choices (some are quite dubious though), and handbrushing decently (for an acrylic), I don't see the reason for the fawning by so many over this product. I've tried it and have had better results with other paints. But, if your wanting to try one of their sets, I suggest you find one that matches your subject interest areas. A WWII RAF color set is no good to you if you build modern Soviet armor, right?

 

 

 

I'm interested mostly because I am new to airbrushing and I've read they're easy to airbrush with.  I want to take at least one variable - paint mixing/consistency - out of the equation while I'm learning to airbrush.

Thanks for the input!

 

[/quote I have been AB for less than 2 years. I have a Iwata Neo which I first tried out with Vallejo paints with bad results because of bad info. (Do not thin with ANY alcohol). So I went back to AB with enamels which made AB a chore from the pain of switching colors to the cleaning of the brush. Hated It! Last month after reading the reviews of VJ Model Air, I bought a 16 bottle set from Amazon for $50. Couldn't be happier! Already purchased a 8 bottle USN set and plan on buying soon a USAAF 16 bottle set. That should keep me in stock for a few years with an odd bottle bought here and there. There are better acrylic paints out there, Tamiya? Humbol?,  but for the price and ease of use, Vallejo Model Air has been a breath of fresh air. I guess in the end it all comes down to personal preference.

Sooner Born...Buckeye Bred.

 

  • Member since
    July, 2016
Posted by David2080 on Sunday, February 12, 2017 8:09 AM

If you are airbrushing I cant say enough about Vallejo Model Air.  They go down well, have no smell and easy cleanup.  My only complaint is they really need a clear coat because i have had chipping issues.  Otherwise, they are my paint of choice

  • Member since
    March, 2012
  • From: Corpus Christi, Tx
Posted by mustang1989 on Sunday, February 12, 2017 8:57 AM

David2080

If you are airbrushing I cant say enough about Vallejo Model Air.  They go down well, have no smell and easy cleanup.  My only complaint is they really need a clear coat because i have had chipping issues.  Otherwise, they are my paint of choice

 

I haven't really had any problem with the way Vallejo Air goes down as much as I have the constant AB clogging and having to stop regularly to clean the needle off even with a flow enhancer. Other than that they go down smooth as an eggshell and they offer a wide range of colors. NOTE: DON'T cut Vallejo with Windex. It'll result in a gummy disaster. Use either the Vallejo thinner or MM's acrylic paint thinner.

 

Being really stupid IS "the new smart"!!

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England
Posted by Bish on Sunday, February 12, 2017 8:58 AM

I am not that big a fan of model air myself. I got the 4 colours i need for German armour but found it to thin. I won't be useing any more once i have used those up. I would suggest buying a couple of colours needed for a certain kit and seeing what you think.

As for model colour, i really like that for brush painting and am in the process of replacing my tamiya paints with it for that. But as mentioned, it needs thinning before it can be airbrushed.

 ''I am a Norfolk man, and I glory in being so''

On the bench: Academy 1/72nd P-47D

  • Member since
    January, 2013
Posted by BlackSheepTwoOneFour on Sunday, February 12, 2017 9:28 AM

So many folks have different opinions on Vallejo paints. One thing is NEVER, EVER thin Vallejo with alcohol!!! Otherwise you'll spend most of your time cleaning your airbrush than using it.

You mentioned you use acrylics due to health issues. While I do understand the reasoning for acrylics but do you own an airbrush spray booth? 

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Meridian, ID
Posted by modelcrazy on Sunday, February 12, 2017 10:37 AM

I use Vallejo and Model Air mostly for ships. If you are going to thin any paint I would suggest using the manufactures thinners which is designed specifically for their chemistry. I tried thinning Vallejo with water and alcohol before and it was a mess.

 

I understand your health concerns believe me, but if you’re looking for something for cars I wouldn't use Vallejo at all. you can't beat lacquers and enamels for a car finish. For Armor I will prime with an enamel and go over that with and acrylic. 2 cents

ON THE BENCH

1/72 Hasegawa GR.4 Tornado
1/72 Cyber Hobby D3A Val, Akagi
1/350 Aoshima IJN Takao

In Que

1/72 Airfix A6M2b Type 0 Model 21 Zero, Akagi
1/350 Dragon USS The Sulivans built as USS Johnston

  • Member since
    May, 2013
  • From: Indiana, USA
Posted by Greg on Sunday, February 12, 2017 11:52 AM

Some pros and cons of Vallejo Model Air I have experienced.

Pros:

Sprays straight of of bottle as advertised (though some use a few drops of airbrush thinner....I have gone both ways)

I like the little bottles. Drop by drop control = very little waste. Makes for easy mixing (if you want to thin)

Great color selection (as mentioned by Stikpusher)

Decent availability. Some acrylic brands are constantly out of stock or hard to find, and personally I won't play hide and seek with a consumable.

Lays down nicely, IMO.

Cons:

Dry tip (this is the 'clogging' as mentioned by some friends above). Vallejo's relatively new flow improver has pretty much eliminated that issue, and IMO Vallejo Air plus Vallejo flow enhancer makes Vallejo Air as easy to spray as Tamiya. So it's not really a con if you use the flow improvemer.

From Vallejo's 'auxiliary products' page....

Airbrush Flow Improver
 
Medium designed to improve the flow and delay the drying of paint on the needle while airbrushing. It is recommended to ad 1-2 drops of Flow Improver to 10 drops of paint in the cup of the airbrush.

Presentation:
71.262: Bottle de 17 ml.
71.362: Bottle de 32 ml.
71.462: Bottle de 60 ml.
71.562: Bottle de 200 ml.
 
Sprayed finish may feel 'rubbery' and never quite cured. I have found this to differ with different colors, and get worse with too heavy coats (which unfortunately for me I have a habit of doing). This drives some folks nuts, and though I'm not crazy about it I'm going to clear coat everything anyway, and the clear coat negates the issue.
 
Comment:
 
I would recommend a good primer always. Otherwise, Vallejo will scratch off fairly easily.
 
Have fun experimenting!

-Greg

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Sunday, February 12, 2017 12:11 PM

BlackSheepTwoOneFour

So many folks have different opinions on Vallejo paints. One thing is NEVER, EVER thin Vallejo with alcohol!!! Otherwise you'll spend most of your time cleaning your airbrush than using it.

You mentioned you use acrylics due to health issues. While I do understand the reasoning for acrylics but do you own an airbrush spray booth? 

 

I'm not sure I said I had health issues...maybe someone else did in this post. Confused

But yes, I do own a spray booth.

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Sunday, February 12, 2017 12:12 PM

modelcrazy

I use Vallejo and Model Air mostly for ships. If you are going to thin any paint I would suggest using the manufactures thinners which is designed specifically for their chemistry. I tried thinning Vallejo with water and alcohol before and it was a mess.

 

I understand your health concerns believe me, but if you’re looking for something for cars I wouldn't use Vallejo at all. you can't beat lacquers and enamels for a car finish. For Armor I will prime with an enamel and go over that with and acrylic. 2 cents

 

Got it.

 

Thanks for the input!

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Sunday, February 12, 2017 12:14 PM

Greg

Some pros and cons of Vallejo Model Air I have experienced.

Pros:

Sprays straight of of bottle as advertised (though some use a few drops of airbrush thinner....I have gone both ways)

I like the little bottles. Drop by drop control = very little waste. Makes for easy mixing (if you want to thin)

Great color selection (as mentioned by Stikpusher)

Decent availability. Some acrylic brands are constantly out of stock or hard to find, and personally I won't play hide and seek with a consumable.

Lays down nicely, IMO.

Cons:

Dry tip (this is the 'clogging' as mentioned by some friends above). Vallejo's relatively new flow improver has pretty much eliminated that issue, and IMO Vallejo Air plus Vallejo flow enhancer makes Vallejo Air as easy to spray as Tamiya. So it's not really a con if you use the flow improvemer.

From Vallejo's 'auxiliary products' page....

Airbrush Flow Improver
 
Medium designed to improve the flow and delay the drying of paint on the needle while airbrushing. It is recommended to ad 1-2 drops of Flow Improver to 10 drops of paint in the cup of the airbrush.

Presentation:
71.262: Bottle de 17 ml.
71.362: Bottle de 32 ml.
71.462: Bottle de 60 ml.
71.562: Bottle de 200 ml.
 
Sprayed finish may feel 'rubbery' and never quite cured. I have found this to differ with different colors, and get worse with too heavy coats (which unfortunately for me I have a habit of doing). This drives some folks nuts, and though I'm not crazy about it I'm going to clear coat everything anyway, and the clear coat negates the issue.
 
Comment:
 
I would recommend a good primer always. Otherwise, Vallejo will scratch off fairly easily.
 
Have fun experimenting!
 

Great info.  Thanks!

What is a good Primer?

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Sunday, February 12, 2017 12:42 PM

Primers I can recommend from personal experience:

Gunze Mr Surfacer, Tamiya White Surface Primer, and Humbrol Enamel.

Primer that you should stay away from- Testors Acrylic. It has the same adhesion and durability issues of the rest of their acrylic line.

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Sunday, February 12, 2017 1:15 PM

stikpusher

Primers I can recommend from personal experience:

Gunze Mr Surfacer, Tamiya White Surface Primer, and Humbrol Enamel.

Primer that you should stay away from- Testors Acrylic. It has the same adhesion and durability issues of the rest of their acrylic line.

 

Great...Thanks!

 

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Florida
Posted by plasticjunkie on Sunday, February 12, 2017 4:04 PM

If you want easy paints to work with then go with enamel. I use MM enamels 90% of the time. I have a few acrylics that I use for specific reasons (used as a barrier for oil washes) but I find I have better control with enamels than with acrylics. I can thin my enamel and dial down my regulator to 5-6 Psi and do hair thin lines all day long. I can't do that with acrylics, specially the tip dry is an issue.

I have to say that Tamiya acrylics behave closer to enamels and spray much better   than most acrylics.

 I also echo stik's statement about MM primer which is junk and will not adhere, lifting when masking tape is pulled up.

 

 

 

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Sunday, February 12, 2017 4:40 PM

plasticjunkie

If you want easy paints to work with then go with enamel. I use MM enamels 90% of the time. I have a few acrylics that I use for specific reasons (used as a barrier for oil washes) but I find I have better control with enamels than with acrylics. I can thin my enamel and dial down my regulator to 5-6 Psi and do hair thin lines all day long. I can't do that with acrylics, specially the tip dry is an issue.

I have to say that Tamiya acrylics behave closer to enamels and spray much better   than most acrylics.

 I also echo stik's statement about MM primer which is junk and will not adhere, lifting when masking tape is pulled up.

  

Ok.  Great info.  Let me take a little different tack because you are the second one to mention Tamiya acrylics.  I have just about every color of Tamiya acrylics there is.  Are you folks saying Tamiya Acrylics spray just as well, or better than, Model Air Colors?

I was going for Model Air because it is claimed is that they are airbrush ready out of the bottle.  Are Tamiya Acrylics airbrush ready out of the bottle?  If not, what's the correct thinning ratio and what is the best thinner to use with them?

 

Thanks for all the great input folks!

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    December, 2009
  • From: Laurel, MD
Posted by Tucohoward on Sunday, February 12, 2017 6:49 PM

If you already have Tamiya paint, definitely stick with that. 100 times better than Vallejo will ever be. Thinned with lacquer thinner they spray wonderfully. I don't use any formula for thinning, just mix until it sprays how I want it, but I would guess about 50/50. If you really want easy painting switch to MRP immediately and you will never look back, however Tamiya is very good.

Jay

The Mighty Mo says no.

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Sunday, February 12, 2017 7:13 PM

Tucohoward

If you already have Tamiya paint, definitely stick with that. 100 times better than Vallejo will ever be. Thinned with lacquer thinner they spray wonderfully. I don't use any formula for thinning, just mix until it sprays how I want it, but I would guess about 50/50. If you really want easy painting switch to MRP immediately and you will never look back, however Tamiya is very good.

Jay

 

MRP?

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    January, 2013
Posted by BlackSheepTwoOneFour on Sunday, February 12, 2017 8:34 PM

My go-to primer is Rustoleum primer in a rattle can. Never had issues with it and it's wet and dry sandable. Economical too!

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Meridian, ID
Posted by modelcrazy on Sunday, February 12, 2017 9:11 PM

I like spraying Model Air more than Tamiya but like was said earlier Model Air feels spongy after it drys. Tamiya feels smooth but the mix is hard to achieve. 

ON THE BENCH

1/72 Hasegawa GR.4 Tornado
1/72 Cyber Hobby D3A Val, Akagi
1/350 Aoshima IJN Takao

In Que

1/72 Airfix A6M2b Type 0 Model 21 Zero, Akagi
1/350 Dragon USS The Sulivans built as USS Johnston

  • Member since
    July, 2004
  • From: Sunny So. Cal... The OC
Posted by stikpusher on Sunday, February 12, 2017 11:51 PM

Yes, Tamiya air brushes superbly. You can thin it with their thinner or generic lacquer thinner for best results. Usually a 2 parts paint to one part thinner ratio is a good starting point, but may need variation. The main downside of Tamiya is that most of their colors are "generic", so to speak. Most , aside from the more recent releases, are not matched to FS, ANA, BSC, RAL, or RLM standards, if you work in builds that use those. But aside from that angle, they really are great paints to use. And you can easily add a drop of this color or that color to any of their main colors to get them close enough to what you need for accuracy adjustments.

 

F is for FIRE, That burns down the whole town!

U is for URANIUM... BOMBS!

N is for NO SURVIVORS...

       - Plankton

LSM

 

  • Member since
    June, 2014
Posted by bluenote on Monday, February 13, 2017 8:14 AM

stikpusher

Yes, Tamiya air brushes superbly. You can thin it with their thinner or generic lacquer thinner for best results. Usually a 2 parts paint to one part thinner ratio is a good starting point, but may need variation. The main downside of Tamiya is that most of their colors are "generic", so to speak. Most , aside from the more recent releases, are not matched to FS, ANA, BSC, RAL, or RLM standards, if you work in builds that use those. But aside from that angle, they really are great paints to use. And you can easily add a drop of this color or that color to any of their main colors to get them close enough to what you need for accuracy adjustments.

 

I never understood why tamiya has such a limited range of colours.  Their spray paints have a great variety, especially for the car modeler.  But, for some reason, they don't have those same colours in their acrylic range/bottle range.  

  • Member since
    May, 2013
  • From: Indiana, USA
Posted by Greg on Monday, February 13, 2017 10:00 AM

PontiacRich

 Great info.  Thanks!

What is a good Primer?

 

 
You're welcome. If something helps, that's great!
 
My new primer of choice is Stynlyrez by Badger. A online friend here sent me a bottle last year, I've used nothing else since.
 
Other primers I've used and like (end echoing others above); Tamiya surface primer (all textures), Mr Surfacer, Alclad surface primer.
 
Two to run from (IMO). Model Master grey primer. Not even a primer, it is a color called grey primer. And Vallejo surface primer, which must be great for figure painting and stuff. But for the rest of us, it doesn't adhere that great and it doesn't sand, just gums up.
 
BTW, Vallejo acrylics (Model Air and Model Color) are my go to paints, so I'm not throwing stones at Vallejo, I just don't care for thier primer.
 
To chime in on the Tamiya discussion, I agree with my mates here, it is really good stuff and sprays great. But the color selection is way to limited for me, and I don't care to mix colors (just personal preference/laziness.....I actually admire folk who do custom mix)
 
 
 

-Greg

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Maine
Posted by PontiacRich on Monday, February 13, 2017 5:56 PM

Greg

 

 
PontiacRich

 Great info.  Thanks!

What is a good Primer?

 

 

 
You're welcome. If something helps, that's great!
 
My new primer of choice is Stynlyrez by Badger. A online friend here sent me a bottle last year, I've used nothing else since.
 
Other primers I've used and like (end echoing others above); Tamiya surface primer (all textures), Mr Surfacer, Alclad surface primer.
 
Two to run from (IMO). Model Master grey primer. Not even a primer, it is a color called grey primer. And Vallejo surface primer, which must be great for figure painting and stuff. But for the rest of us, it doesn't adhere that great and it doesn't sand, just gums up.
 
BTW, Vallejo acrylics (Model Air and Model Color) are my go to paints, so I'm not throwing stones at Vallejo, I just don't care for thier primer.
 
To chime in on the Tamiya discussion, I agree with my mates here, it is really good stuff and sprays great. But the color selection is way to limited for me, and I don't care to mix colors (just personal preference/laziness.....I actually admire folk who do custom mix)
 
 

 
Holy crap...just lookd up Stynlyrez on Amazon...$235 for 3 2 oz. bottles Surprise
 
 
This stuff is way too expensive for my budget, unless I'm looking at the wrong stuff?

Rich - "And when the Band you're in starts playing different tunes, I'll see you on the Dark Side of the Moon" - Pink Floyd

  • Member since
    September, 2016
  • From: Albany, New York
Posted by ManCityFan on Monday, February 13, 2017 8:35 PM
Go to Megahobby.com. 4 oz. bottle for $11.25 There are three colors to choose from. Amazon and Ebay can provide deals, but can also provide crazy prices, like the one you found. Personally, I would rather order from online hobby stores so that they stay in business. I would use a local hobby store (brick and mortar) if I had one near by.

The Mrs. suggested I attend a "plasticholics Anonymous" meeting.  I think she is getting a little tired of dinner conversation consisting of "model, model, model".

 

 

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