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Help needed - gloss-coating

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Help needed - gloss-coating
Posted by jcopilot on Thursday, January 16, 2020 11:00 PM

I've just spent a great deal of time stripping the paint off 38 cabooses, then spraying with Tamiya rattle-can primer, then spraying with Tamiya rattle-can paint from the TS series.  The Tamiya paint dries flat so I then sprayed with Rustoleum Painters Touch 2X gloss coating.  I do all my spraying in the garage so I have to be mindful of the temperature (I live in Maryland).

On the day I sprayed the gloss-coat, it was about 55 degrees in the garage, humidity is unknown.  As I finished each caboose, I looked at the coverage and verified that it looked even and smooth.  But after drying, it looks rough, too rough to apply decals.

What might the problem be?  Humidity?  Does the Rustoleum gloss-coat dry too quickly?  But more importantly, what can be done to salvage these cars and save me from stripping, priming and painting them all over.  Should I over-spray with Tamiya or Testors gloss-coat?  And if I have to re-do it all, what do you recommend for gloss coating - stick with the brand - Tamiya?, use Testors?  I do have an airbrush, but using the spray cans is soooooo much faster and easier, but if the only way to save these cars is to use an airbrush for the overspray, then I guess I will.

All help is appreciated,

Jeff

If it's worth doing, it's worth doing twice.
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Posted by hon30critter on Thursday, January 16, 2020 11:31 PM

Hi Jeff,

38 cabooses!! Wow! That will be quite a fleet! I thought I was doing pretty good when I did eight at once.

My first question would be: If you spray everything with a gloss coat now, how much of the detail will be lost due to the number of coats of paint? Maybe try the gloss coat on one caboose and see what the results are. Either you will be happy or you won't be happy. Unfortunately, I suspect that you won't be happy. If I am correct much of the detailing will be lost and you will have a considerable amount of paint stripping to do.

I think the more important question is: Do you want 'quick' or do you want 'good'? Spray cans put down a lot of paint in a very short time. Testors is notorious for putting too much paint out in a hurry. Their Dulcote and Glosscote spray cans work okay if you are quick, but their colour spray cans could drown an elephant in seconds!Smile, Wink & Grin

That begs another question: If you have an airbrush and you want good results, then why not use the airbrush? So what if it takes a couple more hours to get the job done right?

There's my My 2 Cents worth.

Good luck with your fleet!

Dave

 

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Posted by jcopilot on Thursday, January 16, 2020 11:36 PM

Dave,

It sounds like you suspect that I won't be happy with an overspray of any gloss coat product - Tamiya/Testors/airbrush - at this point, that I'm likely looking at starting all over again.  Am I reading that correctly?

Jeff

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Posted by doctorwayne on Friday, January 17, 2020 12:11 AM

Was the Tamiya paint in spray cans?  I've used their jar paint both for brushing and airbrushing, and it works well.  I recently bought a spray can of Tamiya Primer (as I'm almost out of Floquil's Grey Primer) and was very impressed by its almost airbrush-like output.

I suspect that the Rustoleum product is too heavy in its output for use on a model.  I don't know if Tamiya offers a clear gloss in a spray can, but if they do, I'd guess that you'd get better results - not so heavy an application, and also compatible with the paint on which you're applying it.

I use Testors Glosscote in my airbrush, as I can mix it with Dullcote to achieve pretty-well any degree of semi-gloss I might need. However, because it's lacquer-based, you may want to let the paint "cure" a little longer before clear-coating it with Glosscote.  I use ordinary lacquer thinner with it for airbrushing, about 15/20% thinner.  Apply it fairly lightly, and by the time you've gone all around the caboose, the side first-done is ready for its second coat.  I've never had airbrushed Dull- or Glosscote lift or otherwise harm already-applied paint, regardless of the type of paint.

EDIT:  Yes, by the sound of it, you aren't going to be happy with it the way it is, so you'll likely have to start over.

Wayne

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 12:41 AM

Wayne,

Yes, the Tamiya paint was in spray cans, the only way to get that color (TS-33, Dull Red), a particularly annoying aspect of Tamiya - colors available only in spray cans or bottles, but not both.

I like the way the Tamiya primer and paint went on, I tried to move the spray quickly and not let the paint build up.  I'm happy with the results of the primer and paint.

Yes, the Rustoleum product is a heavy spray, but, here again, I tried to move the spray quickly so it wouldn't build up.  I thought I had been successful.  I'm not really sure the rough finish is due to a heavy application, but I don't really know what to blame - application heavier than I realized, humidity, or drying too quickly.

I will try spraying one body with Tamiya gloss coat and another with Testors gloss coat and see either one gives me the smooth glossy finish I want.  I do dread the thought of starting over.

Jeff

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Posted by doctorwayne on Friday, January 17, 2020 12:48 AM

jcopilot

I do dread the thought of starting over.

jcopilot

If it's worth doing, it's worth doing twice.

Just sayin... Whistling

Wayne

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Posted by hon30critter on Friday, January 17, 2020 12:58 AM

jcopilot
It sounds like you suspect that I won't be happy with an overspray of any gloss coat product -

Hi Jeff,

That's correct. However, I'm just speculating. Without seeing the results of what you have done so far, that's all I can do.

Based on your most recent post, you are obviously aware of the need to put down thin coats so hopefully the details haven't been obliterated. There is only one way to find out, and that is to apply one of the gloss coats and see what happens.

This is total speculation on my part, but I wonder if your trying to put down a thin coat of the Rustolem may have caused the grainy surface. If the paint was applied too thinly then there may not have been enough solvent left on the surface to allow the paint to flow enough to create a smooth finish.

All that is speculation, but the main thing that I was trying to communicate to you was that, in future endeavours or if you have to start over with the caboose fleet, I think that the airbrush might be a better choice.

Thirty eight cabeese!WowBow Ya gotta show us the finished fleet!

Dave

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Posted by SeeYou190 on Friday, January 17, 2020 6:27 AM

doctorwayne
I recently bought a spray can of Tamiya Primer (as I'm almost out of Floquil's Grey Primer) and was very impressed by its almost airbrush-like output.

.

Tamiya spray can primer is one of the best products I have ever used.

.

It is expensive, but worth it.

.

-Kevin

.

Wink Happily modeling my STRATTON & GILLETTE RAILROAD. A Class A line located in a personal fantasy world of semi-plausible nonsense on Tuesday, August 3rd, 1954.

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 10:01 AM

Nice, Wayne, using my own signature against me. Whistling

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Posted by MisterBeasley on Friday, January 17, 2020 10:41 AM

It is better to wait for a dry day.  If your washer/dryer vent into your garage or into a basement attached to the garage, well, wear dirty clothes for another day.

Dullcoat, in particular, is susceptible to humdity.  I have two Milwaukee black topped geeps, but I finished one with Dullcoat on a humid, damp day.  Instead of a clear flat coat, I got a gray, cloudy coat.  It was actually nice weathering, so I left it, but it is still something to be aware of.

It takes an iron man to play with a toy iron horse. 

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Posted by tstage on Friday, January 17, 2020 10:54 AM

Jeff,

I make it a habit to never mix brands when painting - even if they claim it's okay.  Better safe than sorry.  I also use my garage to spray paint and try to paint only when the humidity is between 40-70%.  How long did you wait between spraying with the Tamiya and spraying with the Rustoleum?

Were the cabooses brass or plastic?  Generally, you shouldn't need to spray a primer on plastic before painting - unless the surface is super-smooth and you need some tooth for the cover paint to stick to.  More layers runs the risk of covering detailing in the shell.

Yea, the Tamiya paint is expensive but it's worth the cost - to me - because of the extra-fine spray that the Tamiya spray can nozzles emit.  I've been very happy with their product.

Tom

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 11:24 AM

Tom,

Tamiya does make a gloss-coat spray, so maybe that's the answer if I have to start all over.  Maybe it was the humidity that ruined the Rustoleum finish, I'll have to pay more attention in the future.

I waited several days between painting the shells and applying the gloss-coat.  Kinda have to wait because days with temps over 50 degrees are rare this time of year in Maryland.

The cabooses are plastic, mostly Lifelike Northeastern in a variety of paint schemes and a few Walthers DM&IR cabooses all in yellow.  I primed them all because the Lifelike cabs were molded in a variety of colors - red, white, yellow and green and I wanted a consistent base color so the final color (red) wouldn't be altered.

I agree, Tamiya spray paints are rather expensive, but their Dull Red color was exactly what I wanted and I couldn't find anything else I liked as well.  Their spray pattern is very fine and I was happy with the results, but it's a flat finish and needs gloss-coating for the decals.

Jeff

If it's worth doing, it's worth doing twice.
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Posted by tstage on Friday, January 17, 2020 12:11 PM

jcopilot
The cabooses are plastic, mostly Lifelike Northeastern in a variety of paint schemes and a few Walthers DM&IR cabooses all in yellow. I primed them all because the Lifelike cabs were molded in a variety of colors - red, white, yellow and green and I wanted a consistent base color so the final color (red) wouldn't be altered.

Jeff,

When you stated in your opening post that you stripped your cabooses, I assumed they were down to the bare plastic.  Is the bare plastic then the variety of colors you listed above?  If so, I now understand why you primed them before painting.  At least the Tamiya is thin enough that you can do that w/o running the risk of covering up detailing.  FYI: Tamiya also makes a semi-gloss, as well.

Tom

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Posted by ROBERT PETRICK on Friday, January 17, 2020 1:19 PM

Hey Jeff-

My sense is that it was a little colder in the garage than you think. I have a similar situation regarding painting this time of year. My garage is insulated and heated, but I keep the temperature low on purpose due to the electric baseboard heating units in there that cause the meter to spin like a roulette wheel. I turn up the thermostat an hour or so before and make sure the temp is 65 or so before rattling the cans. (One more vote in favor of Tamiya; dull, gloss, and/or primer.) I also keep an accurate aquarium thermometer in there to make sure so I don't have to rely on the WeatherChannel or the local bank sign.

'About' 55 is cutting it a little close. I've experienced running and sagging and orange peel in that temperature range, and the relative humidity where I live hovers in the 15-to-20-percent range. High desert of Wyoming.

Sorry to hear about your distress. Hope it helps to know we are all sympathetic. Good luck.

Robert

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Posted by rrebell on Friday, January 17, 2020 1:33 PM

I feel the gloss before decals dates to a time before Micro sol and others and is no longer needed, I never use it.

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Posted by doctorwayne on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:27 PM

rrebell
I feel the gloss before decals dates to a time before Micro sol and others and is no longer needed, I never use it.

Well you can certainly put decals on a flat finish, and you could probably put them on a piece of toast, too, but when you spray them with a dull finish to kill the gloss, it still won't look like anything but a decal stuck on something, with a finish different from the background on which it's been placed. 

In my experience, flat over gloss and flat over flat are unlikely to give you the same finish, unless you're doing multiple coats.

If you're satisfied with the results you get, then I'd guess your method to be appropriate to your expectations.

Personally, I prefer to do decal work on a gloss finish, then overspray it with more gloss, followed by matte or semi-gloss for the final finish.

Wayne

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:39 PM

Tom,

The Lifelike cabooses were painted in C&O yellow, Chessie yellow and orange, PC green, WM red, white and black, AD&N red and LV brown.  The Walthers cabooses were painted in DM&IR yellow.  I was concerned that my chosen color would look different depending on the paint underneath.  When I stripped them, I found they had been cast in yellow, red, white and green and I didn't want my final coat to be affected in different ways due to those color differences.  And that's why I primed them all.

I just bought a can of Tamiya gloss-coat, TS-13, and I'm going to try over-spraying, got my fingers crossed.

Jeff 

If it's worth doing, it's worth doing twice.
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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:47 PM

Robert,

I have a thermometer in my garage just so I decide if it's warm enough to paint.  Humidity here in Maryland can get quite high and that day it was a little drizzly outside.  Maybe I should get a hygrometer as well.

If I have to wait for 65 degrees, it'll be a while before I can paint again.  I guess that will give me time to strip them all.

Jeff

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Posted by doctorwayne on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:50 PM

jcopilot
...I found they had been cast in yellow, red, white and green and I didn't want my final coat to be affected in different ways due to those color differences. And that's why I primed them all.

Yeah, if the components of a model are of various colours, whether a kitbash of different-coloured plastic parts or a detail job with brass on plastic or plastic on brass, primer is a good way to ensure that the applied paint will turn out looking the same, whatever the underlying colours might have originally been.

"Priming" is readying the surface for paint, whether to improve the original finish of the material, or its ability to accept paint, or to make the original material all the same colour, so that it all accepts all paint in the same manner.

Wayne

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:50 PM

Rrebell,

Interesting.  The orthodoxy has always been that decals must never be applied to a flat finish because they will look silvery from the air trapped beneath.

Jeff

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:52 PM

Wayne,

Your response to Rrebell follows what I've always thought ... and read in the model press.  But you go one step further - you apply gloss OVER the decal followed by the usual dull coat.  Have you had less-than-satisfactory experiences when you didn't apply the gloss over the decal?

Jeff

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Posted by jcopilot on Friday, January 17, 2020 3:55 PM

Wayne,

Yes, I wanted a consistent base color to get a consistent final color.  I got that much right, but this gloss-coat thing has really kicked my butt.

Jeff

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Posted by rrebell on Sunday, January 19, 2020 12:46 PM

jcopilot

Rrebell,

Interesting.  The orthodoxy has always been that decals must never be applied to a flat finish because they will look silvery from the air trapped beneath.

Jeff

 

Never had that problem but I make sure the decal is well attached, used alot of decal setting solution at times. I also cut the decal as close as possible to the print, that had alot to do with it. 

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Posted by doctorwayne on Sunday, January 19, 2020 1:59 PM

jcopilot
...But you go one step further - you apply gloss OVER the decal followed by the usual dull coat. Have you had less-than-satisfactory experiences when you didn't apply the gloss over the decal?

I've been a long-time user of dry transfers - easy to put on matte finishes, then overspray with a clear finish to protect the lettering.  That finish is usually flat, but a model representing a fairly new car or locomotive could get a spray of semi-gloss.  There is no film to hide with dry transfers.

However, sources for dry transfers weren't as widespread as decal suppliers, and when I started to use decals, I noticed that even when they were placed on a gloss finish, then oversprayed with a clear flat finish, the decal still appeared noticeable as-such.
I couldn't put my finger on it for a while, but I eventually realised that the decaled area had a somewhat different appearance than areas with no decal, and eventually determined that the applied decal took the flat finish over it in a different manner than the areas which were painted only, with no decals.

My assumption was that the gloss of the decal, applied onto a glossy surface, is not of the same reflective quality as the gloss on which it has been applied.  Covering those disparate glosses with a flat finish didn't leave them looking exactly the same, and the fact that the lettering was done with decals was obvious. 

(When cutting decals, I do remove any excess film from around the lettering, and often separate words into their component letters, especially if the lettering is widely-spaced.  Large-font lettering often gets trimmed completely of the film around each letter, but I won't even attempt to remove the clear film from the interior spaces of letters such as A, B, O, etc.)

Anyway, I figured that it wouldn't hurt to try a gloss overspray on the decals, to even-out that shine, which seemed to do the trick.  It was easy then to follow-up, pretty-much immediately, with a spray of clear flat to finish the job, and I now use that procedure for all decal work, after which the weathering can be applied.

I don't apply any clear finish over weathering of any sort, as I feel that it makes the finish too uniform.

Wayne

 

 

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