ISSUE NUMBER 2

HISTORICAL MINIATURES BY GEORGE GRASSE
HISTORICAL MINIATURES JOURNAL

NOVEMBER  2008

HISTORICAL MINIATURES JOURNAL ISSUE NUMBER 2

PUBLISHED BY GEORGE GRASSE

MODELING TIPS

 

MILITARY MINIATURES

Tip 6) All white metal military miniature kits have mold seam lines.  More often than not, today's kits have relatively faint seams and are easy to clean up.  I use a #11 X-Acto blade to carefully remove seam lines.  Pay attention because a uniform seam may not be the true mold seam.  Next, I use a Dremel tool with a #428 carbon steel wire brush to buff the seams.  Again, be careful not to remove uniform seams, buttons, or other small details.  In most cases the Dremel tool does not leave worrisome marks but these are easily removed using #5 fine steel wool. 

Tip 7) When the figure is cleaned up and buffed, I assemble only those parts that can be easily reached with a paint brush.  In most cases, the head, body, and legs are super-glued using Zap-a-Gap (see Tip 8 below for 5-minute epoxy usage).   In most circumstances, so it seems, super glue doesn't do the job as fast as you thought it would or it does it too quickly and fingers get stuck.  I don't offer much help here except to be careful and make sure you have a debonder available.  All of the other parts for the figure are put in a small box so they don't get lost or mixed. 

Tip 8) For larger scale white metal figures 90mm or above, I use a 5-minute epoxy.  By the way, one way to be sure you have mixed the two parts of the epoxy thoroughly is to put a tiny dash of paint in the mix so you can see just how the two parts are combined before joining parts.  Put a little epoxy on both pieces; join the parts making sure they fit; wipe off the excess; put in a clamp, or set it down, or hold it until the epoxy sets up.  Don't forget to remove the applicator from the epoxy puddle and wipe it clean if you plan to reuse it.

 

WORLD WAR I AVIATION MODELING IN 1:48 SCALE

Tip 9) For simulating wood grain, I first paint the surface in a light ochre or buff color.  Next, I paint the laminated wood striations using a dark wood acrylic color.  For the purest, you must have the proper number of laminations so do your research.  Lastly, I use colored pencils to impart different shades all over the propeller.  For example, I might use yellow ochre, red brown, and dark brown.  I literally hold the pencil sideways and rub it across the surface of the propeller.  I don't concern myself with any attempt to stay within a lamination.  So, after the first set of shades are applied, use your finger to rub down the pencil marks.  The combination of wax in the pencil and the oils from your finger work like magic.  Keep rubbing.  Apply more or less of a color and repeat.  Within five minutes you have an acceptable looking WW1 wood propeller.

Tip 10) I usually apply a thin sprayed coat of fine primer.  As a first base coat of paint for all my aircraft, I brush on Humbrol enamel matt paints.  Using a large Andrea #4 or higher brush, Humbrol, though seemingly thick, flows beautifully.  Of course, use Humbrol shades that come close to the MisterKit acrylic WW1 paint for finishing.  For example, I have an ancient tin of Humbrol Ancient Purple which is only slightly darker than the MisterKit German Albatros Mauve (or lilac) adopted in April 1917.  By the way, I use Humbrol enamels as the base coat when painting military miniatures that have large surface areas such as horses and figures larger than 54mm.

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