Modeling Products

Reviews of general scale modeling products such as paint, glue, etc.

Hellcat Mk. I Mask

Published: January 25th, 2017     
Hellcat Mk. I Mask
Reviewed by: Paul Brown, IPMS# 24085
Scale: 1/72
Company: Eduard

This set is designed to fit Eduard's recently released Fleet Air Arm Hellcat Mk. I, but as the Hellcat Mk. I is a F6F-3, the mask will also fit Eduard's F6F-3 kit.

Since Eduard's Hellcat includes different parts for the central canopy section to allow you to pose it either open or closed, and these parts are actually a little different, the mask set includes separate masks for each option. I chose the open option as I wanted to show off the nice interior provided in the kit.

As with Eduard's other mask sets, these are easy to apply, but I apparently inadvertently stretched the mask for the left front quarter panel of the windscreen as it was a little too wide and covered part of the rear framing. This was easily fixed with a sharp Xacto blade. One gripe I have with Eduard's masks is that often the masks have a designed in hole at the top of the canopy that the instructions say to file with liquid masking. There is normally plenty of unused tape around the pre-cut masks, so I use small sections of this extra tape to cover the holes. I then salt away the rest of the unused part of the mask as this extra tape comes in handy quite often.

Lacquer Thinner

Published: January 23rd, 2017     
Lacquer Thinner
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Tamiya

Tamiya has long offered a wide range of acrylic paints and acrylic thinners. Recently I experimented with Tamiya's Lacquer Thinner, item # 87077. As a rule, I tend to use the paint thinner produced by the same company that produced the paint being used.

I found that the Tamiya lacquer thinner worked very well, indeed, although its use is different than the acrylic thinner I'm used to using. Do not let the fact that it is a Lacquer thinner dissuade you from using it with your standard Tamiya acrylics. It works just fine.

The lacquer thinner is noticeably "stronger" than the acrylic thinner, both in how it interacts with Tamiya acrylics and how it smells. And it should be said here that if you can smell the paint you are airbrushing then you should wear a mask. Also, users are strongly advised not to have an open flame nearby as lacquer is combustible.

US Navy & USMC Colors From 70's to Present

Published: November 13th, 2016     
US Navy & USMC Colors From 70's to Present
Reviewed by: David Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Company: Vallejo

Vallejo makes several different types of paints- some for hand brushing, some for detailing and some pre-thinned for air brushing. Model Air is a range of liquid acrylic colors developed especially for airbrushing and has very finely ground pigments and an acrylic resin which has been designed for durability.

The set reviewed here is for modern US Navy Colors and contains eight 17ml squeeze bottles of:

Vallejo Metal Colors

Published: October 17th, 2016     
Vallejo Metal Colors
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33653
Company: Vallejo

Vallejo has introduced a series of eighteen metallic colors in their Metal Colors line. This also includes a glossy black primer and a gloss protective varnish. Each bottle is 32ml (1.08 ounces) and has an excellent pour dropper which is angled. MSRP is $10.99 per bottle.  

The colors reviewed are:

Halifax B Mk. III canopy masks

Published: October 11th, 2016     
Halifax B Mk. III canopy masks
Reviewed by: Rod Lees, IPMS# 10821
Scale: 1/72
Company: Eduard

Thanks to Eduard for providing more of their excellent aftermarket parts for IPMS USA to review, and to IPMS leadership for sending it to me!

This set is simple to use; Kabuki tape masks for all the clear bits! Included are masks for all the windows, canopy parts, and gun turrets, and wheels. One benefit of these sets is the ability to mask off VERY tiny windows; in this case, all the 1/8" round porthole windows, and some of the intersecting canopy window bits. These can be less than 1/16" across, and are VERY difficult to mask; same with the turret frames, because of the complex curves. Eduard utilizes multiple small tape masks to make sure you cover all the areas without wrinkling, which leads to paint creep under the tape.

After you have installed the canopies and other items, just remove the masks with the tip of a #11 Xacto knife blade, and press into position. Spray paint with interior colors, then the final exterior colors; flatcoat, then remove the masks. Done!