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Recommend Cheap Thinner for Tamiya + Testors Acrylics?

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  • Member since
    July, 2003
  • From: Chicago, USA
Recommend Cheap Thinner for Tamiya + Testors Acrylics?
Posted by MonsterZero on Thursday, January 17, 2019 5:24 PM

I want to buy like 1 gallon cheaply.

I don't want to buy from Tamiya because they sell small bottles expensively.

I guarantee an art supply store will sell you a gallon for the same price, except it won't say "Tamiya" or "Testors" on the bottle.

It will say "Rembrandt" or "El Greco". LOL.

  • Member since
    February, 2016
  • From: Ice coated north 40 saskatchewan
Posted by German Armour on Thursday, January 17, 2019 5:25 PM
For tamiya use isopropyl alcohol.

 Never give up, never quit, never stop modelling.Idea

 

  • Member since
    July, 2013
Posted by modelmaker66 on Thursday, January 17, 2019 5:45 PM

water is cheap

  • Member since
    September, 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Thursday, January 17, 2019 6:10 PM

MonsterZero

I want to buy like 1 gallon cheaply.

I don't want to buy from Tamiya because they sell small bottles expensively...

German Armour

For tamiya use isopropyl alcohol.

modelmaker66

water is cheap

I use Tamiya acrylics, and through trial and error, I came to the conclusion to bite the bullet and use their acrylic thinner, X-20A.  I buy it in the larger plastic bottle.

I started out like you; I followed my Dutchy senses, which made me want to spend as little as possible.  So at first, I tried using water.  I found that this didn't thin the paint properly, and that when applying it by hand, which I did for painting figures, the paint would clump on the brush and on the surface.  When it did manage to apply well enough, applying a second coat would often lift the first coat off.

Then I tried isopropyl, but with the same result.  Tamiya's paints and thinners are made with an alcohol, but it's not isopropyl.  By that time, I was also using it for airbrushing, and I found the same problem as with water-it didn't thin properly, leading to clumping.

So I broke down and bought the bottle of Tamiya's proprietary acrylic thinner.  And all of a sudden, the paint thinned and went on beautifully, whether applied by hand or with the airbrush.  And when applying by hand, I can put down coats as thin as if I had airbrushed them.

I can't speak for others' results, but that's how mine came out.

The one exception to using Tamiya's thinner is using lacquer thinner when airbrushing.  That also thins the paint properly, and it has the added effect that the matte paints are even flatter than when thinned with the Tamiya thinner.

And a little bit of thinner goes a long way.

As for Model Master acrylics, those I can thin with water or with isopropyl, and they go on just fine.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Thursday, January 17, 2019 6:46 PM

Notice that nowhere in this thread does anyone suggest good old hardware store spirit thinner. With reason.

I gave up on Testors acrylic a long time ago.

I don't much use Tamiya because they don't make any colors beyond the basics which are useful to me, but when I do I use tamiya thinner, or in a pinch lacquer thinner.

  • Member since
    July, 2018
  • From: The Deep Woods
Posted by Tickmagnet on Thursday, January 17, 2019 7:11 PM

I use strictly Tamiya acrylics and I stick with their thinner. It lasts quite a while considering you only use a few drops at a time and gives great results. Good luck in your search.

 

 

  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: Sydney, Australia
Posted by Phil_H on Thursday, January 17, 2019 7:40 PM

Tamiya's acrylic thinner is essentially a mix of Isopropyl alcohol, water and some propylene glycol. What propportions though, I don't know.

As mentioned above, buy the 250ml jugs. It's still expensive, but much less so than buying the same amount in the small jars.

It's the finish that makes or breaks a model. When you spend upwards of $50.00 for a kit, it doesn't make sense to skimp on the paints/thinners and risk a bad result.

 

  • Member since
    April, 2009
  • From: Longmont, Colorado
Posted by Cadet Chuck on Thursday, January 17, 2019 7:46 PM

I like to keep things in perspective.  If I am building a $200 model, how much would I need to spend on the manufacturer's recommended thinner, for that particular model?  A nickel maybe? A dime total?

I'll always use the recommended thinner and avoid risks.

Computer, did we bring batteries?.....Computer?

  • Member since
    March, 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Thursday, January 17, 2019 7:54 PM

I use the Tamiya Lacquer Thinner.Alcohol dries it too quick for me,tip keeps clogging.Didnt like water either.

I don't use Modelmaster acrylics.But overall I get better results using manufacturer thinners.For me,no need to experiment.

  • Member since
    June, 2016
Posted by Murphy's Law on Thursday, January 17, 2019 8:41 PM

Using 60ML total mix the following: 2/3 water, 1/3 99% Isopropyl,  1ml fluid retarder,  1ml flow improver.  I’ve used this for about 3 years now with Tamiya paints and it works just as well as their X-20 at a fraction of the cost.

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Thursday, January 17, 2019 10:32 PM

Murphy's Law

Using 60ML total mix the following: 2/3 water, 1/3 99% Isopropyl,  1ml fluid retarder,  1ml flow improver.  I’ve used this for about 3 years now with Tamiya paints and it works just as well as their X-20 at a fraction of the cost.

 

I charge $120/hr as a professional, and my modeling time doesn't come free. If I spend about 100 hours on a model, which is the norm; I am NOT going to save $ 5 on the finish to veer from surefire results towrads an unknown.

  • Member since
    April, 2003
  • From: USA
Posted by keavdog on Thursday, January 17, 2019 10:44 PM

70% Isopropyl alcohol.  50-50. Been doing that for years now.

Thanks,

John

  • Member since
    June, 2016
Posted by Murphy's Law on Friday, January 18, 2019 5:25 AM

GMorrison

 

 
Murphy's Law

Using 60ML total mix the following: 2/3 water, 1/3 99% Isopropyl,  1ml fluid retarder,  1ml flow improver.  I’ve used this for about 3 years now with Tamiya paints and it works just as well as their X-20 at a fraction of the cost.

 

 

 

I charge $120/hr as a professional, and my modeling time doesn't come free. If I spend about 100 hours on a model, which is the norm; I am NOT going to save $ 5 on the finish to veer from surefire results towrads an unknown.

 

 

If you used cheaper thinner you wouldn’t have to charge so much... LOL.. sorry couldn’t resist. Hey use what you want I am simply answering the OP’s question for a cheaper alternative. I will take the Pepsi challenge anyday and go up against X-20. Also after getting the initial ingredients I figure I’m in for less than $1 per 60ml bottle.

  • Member since
    November, 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Friday, January 18, 2019 8:33 AM

Murphy's Law

Using 60ML total mix the following: 2/3 water, 1/3 99% Isopropyl,  1ml fluid retarder,  1ml flow improver.  I’ve used this for about 3 years now with Tamiya paints and it works just as well as their X-20 at a fraction of the cost.

 

FWIW an approximation of your thinner blend works great in MM acrylic too. Use less for brushing of course, very little goes a long way actually. And a bit more for air brushing. MM sprays smooth as silk with that actually.  MM needs very little thinner for brushing. I don't think MM needs the flow aid, the retarder is a must, especially for spraying.

 

  • Member since
    June, 2016
Posted by Murphy's Law on Friday, January 18, 2019 8:43 AM

oldermodelguy

 

 
Murphy's Law

Using 60ML total mix the following: 2/3 water, 1/3 99% Isopropyl,  1ml fluid retarder,  1ml flow improver.  I’ve used this for about 3 years now with Tamiya paints and it works just as well as their X-20 at a fraction of the cost.

 

 

 

FWIW an approximation of your thinner blend works great in MM acrylic too. Use less for brushing of course, very little goes a long way actually. And a bit more for air brushing. MM sprays smooth as silk with that actually.  MM needs very little thinner for brushing.

 

 

Good to know.. I rarely use MM and wasn’t sure if it was compatable or not. 

  • Member since
    November, 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Friday, January 18, 2019 8:47 AM

Murphy's Law

 

 

 

 

Good to know.. I rarely use MM and wasn’t sure if it was compatable or not. 

 

Yep works great, though I edited my last post to say I don't think it needs the flow aid but the retarder is a must. MM needs very little thinner unless doing a wash or something..

Edit: By the way it needs a good primer when going to plastic. I use Stynylrez.

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