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Water modeling - Acrylic gel medium, Liquitex gloss varnish, Modge Podge???

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  • Member since
    January 2018
Posted by Froggy Canuck on Saturday, February 10, 2018 6:22 PM
Thanks to all for the suggestions! I have a very good base to work from using your comments!

Hockey in the Duff - Ardell Bourgeois
Hockey in the duff - Ardell Bourgeois 

  • Member since
    July 2013
Posted by steve5 on Saturday, February 10, 2018 1:10 PM

have a look at some of gene's pic's , it look's pretty good on the glass table  .

 

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Saturday, February 10, 2018 10:11 AM

I have seen folks use patterned (wavy) glass and it looks okay. It was not stained, just wavy patterned. I think it is not the easiest to find, however.  A bought a sheet of wavy patterned plastic, intended for one of those ceiling lights that goes into those 2x4 gridded tiled ceilings. It was okay, got a couple of models from one sheet and had a lot left over.

Now, however, I like the ability to do my own waves, including wake of ship.  For small scale, you can make waves by brushing polyurethane varnish over sea-colored painted surface.  Makes a super glossy overcoat at the same time.  For larger scale I use the gel medium.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    June 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Saturday, February 10, 2018 8:31 AM

Hello F.C.

 My land-lady has a suggestion for all of us . Why not start with a piece of  Stained Glass that already HAS a wavy pattern on it .You can get it with Gentle Swells or WindBlown rills . Then Put your ship on that and go from there . Plus you can get it in the colors that might help too . T.B.       P.S.you can also get it somewhat translucent for further depth effect .

  • Member since
    January 2018
Posted by Froggy Canuck on Thursday, February 8, 2018 12:11 PM
Thanks to all for your wonderful replies and suggestions! I will contact modelcrazy and also see if he can provide me with tips!

Hockey in the Duff - Ardell Bourgeois
Hockey in the duff - Ardell Bourgeois 

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England
Posted by Bish on Wednesday, February 7, 2018 3:17 PM

goldhammer

Drop Modelcrazy a PM.  He does excellent water effects and I'm sure would give pointers.  He did a Rufe tied to the beach not too long ago for a GB here.

 

Ditto He has done some amazing water scenes for both aircraft and ships. Inspired me to finaly give it a go.

I am a Norfolk man and i glory in being so

 

On the bench: Airfix 1/72nd Harrier GR.3/Fujimi 1/72nd Ju 87D-3

  • Member since
    August 2014
  • From: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Posted by goldhammer on Wednesday, February 7, 2018 2:36 PM

Drop Modelcrazy a PM.  He does excellent water effects and I'm sure would give pointers.  He did a Rufe tied to the beach not too long ago for a GB here.

  • Member since
    December 2002
  • From: Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, England
Posted by Bish on Wednesday, February 7, 2018 5:04 AM

I have used woodland scenics for a small amout of water and really liked it. But it is expensive and i would not want to use it to float a whole aircraft kit on. Like you i have some floatplane subjects i want to place on water and have seen some very nice work useing the gel medium.

I am a Norfolk man and i glory in being so

 

On the bench: Airfix 1/72nd Harrier GR.3/Fujimi 1/72nd Ju 87D-3

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Tuesday, February 6, 2018 8:30 PM

Tojo72
 
the Baron

I use acrylic gel medium in the same way that Don and GM described, applying it to a base and then shaping it to make waves and the ship's wake.

You can use it for making a deep-water ocean base, by using a piece of foam as a core, and then coating the surface with the gel. You can carve the surface shape into the foam, and cut out to fit the ship into the base.  Then you coat the base with gel brushed onto the foam.  You can layer this with paper towel (use a brand that doesn't have impressed texture or shapes) and more gel, till you have your water surface formed.

Chris Flodberg is a master of this technique; I don't have any links handy, but if you do a web search, you'll find photos and threads about his builds.  He's also had a feature article in FSM in the recent past, in which he described his method.

 

The Gel Medium article I saw was back in 1983,it was the 1st time I tried it.

Maybe there was a later one,but I held onto that for awhile.

Yeah, I'm talking about a much more recent issue.

I just searched the back issues section of the website to find it, and it's in the April 2016 issue.  "Sculpting Rough Seas", by Chris Flodberg:

http://www.finescale.com/issues/2016/april-2016

 

 

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Monday, February 5, 2018 2:08 PM

the Baron

I use acrylic gel medium in the same way that Don and GM described, applying it to a base and then shaping it to make waves and the ship's wake.

You can use it for making a deep-water ocean base, by using a piece of foam as a core, and then coating the surface with the gel. You can carve the surface shape into the foam, and cut out to fit the ship into the base.  Then you coat the base with gel brushed onto the foam.  You can layer this with paper towel (use a brand that doesn't have impressed texture or shapes) and more gel, till you have your water surface formed.

Chris Flodberg is a master of this technique; I don't have any links handy, but if you do a web search, you'll find photos and threads about his builds.  He's also had a feature article in FSM in the recent past, in which he described his method.

 

The Gel Medium article I saw was back in 1983,it was the 1st time I tried it.

Maybe there was a later one,but I held onto that for awhile.

  • Member since
    September 2006
  • From: Bethlehem PA
Posted by the Baron on Monday, February 5, 2018 12:40 PM

I use acrylic gel medium in the same way that Don and GM described, applying it to a base and then shaping it to make waves and the ship's wake.

You can use it for making a deep-water ocean base, by using a piece of foam as a core, and then coating the surface with the gel. You can carve the surface shape into the foam, and cut out to fit the ship into the base.  Then you coat the base with gel brushed onto the foam.  You can layer this with paper towel (use a brand that doesn't have impressed texture or shapes) and more gel, till you have your water surface formed.

Chris Flodberg is a master of this technique; I don't have any links handy, but if you do a web search, you'll find photos and threads about his builds.  He's also had a feature article in FSM in the recent past, in which he described his method.

The bigger the government, the smaller the citizen.

 

 

  • Member since
    January 2018
Posted by Froggy Canuck on Sunday, February 4, 2018 1:45 PM

Thanks to all for your input, very much appreciated! I look forward to working with these techniques!

To add a little clarification, I'm not really a ship kinda guy, mostly aircraft, but I have a kit of a Zero floatplane (Rufe) and a BV 138 I'd like to set on water if I can... Methinks I won't be needing a lot of water, nor make huge wakes, just still water or with a bit of movement to it... 

Hockey in the Duff - Ardell Bourgeois
Hockey in the duff - Ardell Bourgeois 

  • Member since
    June 2017
Posted by jmoran426 on Sunday, February 4, 2018 11:41 AM
You are wise to stay away from Woodland Scenics Water as it is tricky to work with as well. I used it to pour water for an O scale railroad module to about 3/8" thickness. The problems were it leaked out of any seam or hole it could find, tended to creep up at edges where it could gain adhesion, leaving and un-natural up-lifted curve at the edge, and after weeks/months never really set, but continued to "move" around. Very frustrating.

jmoran426

  • Member since
    November 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Sunday, February 4, 2018 11:32 AM

Making the waves depends a bit on what scale the model is.  I use the acrylic medium for larger scale, 350th and bigger. I find in 1:700 I can make waves just by brushing them onto a smooth base that I have painted with an ocean color, and then brushing on clear polyurethane varnish.  This is your chance to paint and intentionally leave brush marks.

For 1:700 another trick is to take a sheet of aluminum foil, roll it up in a coil, not worrying about making creases.  The creases will line up in sort of a wave pattern.  The foil is then unrolled and glued to a base.  Then, color painting, followed with several coats of a gloss clear, will give  you a sea.  Takes a little practice, but aluminum foil is cheap, just keep discarding bad rolls until you get one that looks okay.

By the way, when I use the gel medium, I apply it with brush to sculpt into wave shapes.  There are grades of the gel medium by thickness.  The larger the scale, the thicker you want it.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    September 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Sunday, February 4, 2018 11:17 AM

The deep pour types of products are designed for uses typical in model railroads. Streems where the streambed is visible, or stuff like logs on the bank go down in the water.

It's not really good for ship models for the reason you give, plus it has no real advantage over a surface focused model.

My usual method is to select a board for a base and make the top surface quite smooth. Paint it a base color that matches the color of the ocean where your ship is sailing.

Ocean color is largely a reflection of the color of the sky above. But for modeling purposes there's also a need to have the model contrast with the water.

For the water I stay away from blue, I like black or dark gray. 

Acrylic gel medium is stuff like vaseline in consistency, that comes in a jar. it's easy to find it at Michael's and Aaron's. It's art use is to overcoat paintings to give them a texture that makes flat painting art look like oil paint with heavy brush marks.

For your model, if you have a separate hull bottom, or can make a shape 1/4" thick or so, put it on the model and apply the gel around it. Your coat is maybe 1/8" thick. It takes a couple of layers, and waves can be teased up as you go. It starts white but dries clear.

You can add acrylic paint to the gel. Add white for your final wave coats.

One suggestion on waves and wakes. Don't make it up. There are plenty of aerial photos of ships from which the right waves and wake for various hull types can be discerned, or for ancients, copy something similar.

Acrylic varnish comes in flat and gloss. You can decide on the finish you like. 

Some people use silicone sealant, I don't like it as it smells and is hard to move around with a paint brush.

I hope that's a little helpful.

 

Bill

 

 Modeling is an excuse to buy books.

 

  • Member since
    March 2003
  • From: Western North Carolina
Posted by Tojo72 on Sunday, February 4, 2018 10:42 AM

The Gel Medium is used to sculpt the waves and wakes,it dries clear and needs to be painted,if I rememember correctly,the gloss varnish was used to impart a gloss to the waves and water after painting.

  • Member since
    January 2018
Water modeling - Acrylic gel medium, Liquitex gloss varnish, Modge Podge???
Posted by Froggy Canuck on Friday, January 26, 2018 12:08 PM

Hi all, 

Just returned to modeling after about a 25-year hiatus and am currently in information download (or overload Smile) learning about new techniques and such... When I stopped modeling I basically knew nothing about the difference between acrylics and enamels, priming, weathering. I was basically "build-a-model-and-slap-one-coat-of-paint" kind of modeler. 

Now I see all these great dioramas out there, especially the ones with water effects. I do have some questions on this... I understand I can buy Woodland Scenics water effects and deep pour, but this is ridiculously expensive. And I understand some use Modge Podge, which is basically glue. 

But I've also seen some people talk of "Acrylic Gel Medium" and "Liquitex Gloss Varnish"... What is the difference between these two, as it pertains to modeling water?

I understand one is used by artist to mix with paints, and one is a scealant, but for scale modelers, which one is the best to use to model water?

I'm interested in your views on this, oh wise ones! 

Cheers, 

 

Hockey in the Duff - Ardell Bourgeois
Hockey in the duff - Ardell Bourgeois 

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