Wednesday, January 16, 2013

King Tiger Build Proper- Prepainting Ritual

After building the King Tiger (KT) kits by section and zimmerits application, next is painting preparation. The plan was to paint before the sections are fully assembled as the concern was that I may not be able to reach all of the spots once the kits are put together. The kit was built and prepped per major section (hull and parts, turret parts and main gun) with the minor sections (road wheels, sprockets, tracks, etc.) still detached from the main tank.(Please see my previous post "Scale Modeling Guide: Main Battle Tank Parts" as guide). My goal was to thoroughly prepare the kit surface for painting and to apply the paint on every nook and cranny of the tank.
KT sections temporarily assembled with sticky tape.

KT Hull section and parts with zimmerit applied
KT Turret, Main Gun section and parts with zimmerits applied . Note that this turret section was mounted
on a makeshift painting stand using a small camera tripod  and the inverted base of a CD Spindle cake box (see below).

Assembled road wheels, sprockets and parts mounted on modeling
clay using "tooth picks". This shot was taken post painting.
Continuous tracks broken down into parts mounted on modeling
clay using alligator clips on "tooth picks".This shot was taken post painting.
Cleaning the built kit before painting:

The oily and greasy stuff that comes with the plastic molding process and from your hands during kit build will stick on the kit surface and will affect paint surface adherence. Below are some materials used to clean  the kit before painting:

1. Soap and water. Dish washing liquid is usually used as it makes water wetter. The pre-assembled plastic model parts are soaked in the Dish washing liquid mixture of 4-8 drops in a 1/2 gallon of warm water for 10-12 minutes, rinsed in clean warm water and allowed to air dry.

2. Plastic Prep #546007 (from Polly "S") is a pre-painting cleaning agent for plastic surfaces used after the soap and water wash to remove any remaining mold release, Silicone or grease & oils still in crevices and again allowed to air dry before painting. It does a good job of lifting oils and mold release off of plastics and is reusable; you can run it through a coffee filter to keep it fairly clean.

3. 90% alcohol also works but you need to rinse it quickly before it evaporates and leaves all the gunk back on the surface. It also gets a bit heady in a closed room.

4. Some use vinegar on metal models because it's thought to act as a mild etchant to the metal making the paint adhere better to the model.

NOTE: It would be a good idea to use rubber gloves when handling the plastic after washing as well as there will be natural oils on your skin which will adhere on the dried parts.


King Tiger Build- Painting 

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