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Thread: Paint and airbrushing tips and advice

  1. #1
    Join Date
    29th Dec 2007

    Default Paint and airbrushing tips and advice

    Hi guys,

    Just wondering where you guys get your paints from for customizing figures. Seems as though we have bugger all available at shops here (can't just pop down to Wal-Mart/Home Depot and pick up some Krylon Fusion like all the yanks suggest!). Do you order online? If so, where from?

    I'm mainly looking for high quality enamel paints etc

  2. #2
    Join Date
    27th Dec 2007


    I get most of my paint from Rainbow 10

    Rainbow 10 no longer ship aerosols overseas but HLJ is still able to, which is strange as R10 cite Japanese post as the reason.

    Auto colours from Airbrush only.

    Local hobby stores around here have bottles of Tamiya enamel and spray cans.
    Also I've found the hobby store next to Flinders Station is about the only stockist of Testors Model Master Chrome Silver which is a decent brushable chrome.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    8th Jun 2009


    It's illegal to send pressure pack paint cans via mail, both locally and internationally.

    Hobby and RC shops should be able to help you. I've used Tamiya spray paint for plastics on metal, seems to work well.

    For detail paints, maybe something like Citadel paints from Games Workshop or maybe something from arts supply stores.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    31st Jan 2009


    I'm just curious, but is there any particular reason why you want to start with enamel paints? or specifically krylon enamels??

    ring up these hobby shops and try your luck there first.

    Also, correct me if im wrong but games workshop only sell acrylic paints which can not be painted over enamels unless you apply a sealer afterwards to stop the paint from rubbing off...
    its something to do with how oil (enamel) floats on water (acrylic) etc...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    23rd Feb 2009


    I use all Tamiya paint, both spray paint and bottles of enamels. They work great and come in great colors nevr had any problems with them

  6. #6
    Join Date
    21st Nov 2008

    Default What paint to use?

    Hey team, im currently stripping down a junker Jazz to the bare bones with the hopes of making him look beautiful again. So far i have disassembled him and have removed all of this paint on his diecast parts. Now, what paint do i use to get it back to the way it was? What i mean by that is, what paint is used by Hasbro/Takara which for the most part is resistant to chipping? Ive done this thing before but the paint i used chipped off really easily. Ive been told car touch up paint is excellent. I think that there is a gloss overcoat to be done also?
    Any help is much appreciated.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    25th May 2008
    Mount Barker, South Australia


    i think they origanally used an Enamal spray paint that might be the same sort of stuff thats used in the car industry

  8. #8
    Join Date
    29th Jun 2009


    I use a combination of Testors gloss and flat enamal on most parts im painting. I have a set of Testors acrylics too but i only use them on parts that are in areas that dont get handled or areas that run the risk of chipping, rubbing or scratching as its quite easy to come off.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    14th Nov 2008

    Default Airbrushing

    The purpose of this thread is to detail any tips, tricks or techniques for all things airbrush. This is also the place to ask any questions you may have about airbrushing which should hopefully come in handy for people just getting started/wanting to find out more.

    When it comes to airbrushing Transformers, I recommend a dual-action gravity fed airbrush. With this type of 'brush you get better control with the dual-action (allowing real-time adjusting of paint volume) and easier cleaning & the ability to spray at lower air pressures with the gravity fed paint cup (at the sacrifice of holding less paint than a siphon fed airbrush).

    For those who already airbrush, I'd be interested to know which brush/compressor combo you use, what psi air pressure you set the compressor to (do you ever change the psi?) and any discoveries you've made since practicing this method of painting.

    Local prices for quality brands (Iwata, Badger, Paasche for example) are a bit ridiculous so I looked online and ended up buying an airbrush & compressor combo from

    I went for this particular combo which is great as it allows you to pick exactly which brush you want (I went for the CR after all the great things I'd read about it in forums). The total cost for this set was US$331 including shipping to Australia. The CR itself is a brilliant piece of kit, I especially love how you can remove the end nozzle to spray super fine lines of paint.

    One thing I will say about this particular compressor (Iwata Sprint Jet) is that despite it saying in the write up: "Working pressure from 1psi to 35psi", I've never been able to get it higher than 23psi despite everything being correctly/firmly connected (for the uninitiated, the working pressure is the psi once the airbrush is releasing air). Strangely, if I set the psi anywhere between 55-80 (idle, not working pressure) it still always maxes out at 23psi. Not really sure what's going on there but ah well.

    While we're on the topic of the compressor, and being that we live in Australia, I strongly urge that you buy an 'in-line moisture trap' if you're using a small compressor such as my one (yes, even if it has it's own built in moisture trap). Trust me, when it's a hot/humid day those little moisture traps just can't cope and you will most likely end up with an airbrush that spits out water every now and then effectively ruining an otherwise perfect paint job. Putting the compressor on the ground can help with this but I still recommend the second inline moisture trap - all you need is one of these for $10 shipped (don't pay 5X for a brand model that's exactly the same thing). You can thank me later.

    Other than that, another essential purchase (which I still haven't bought, lol, good one DD) is an airbrush holder. I can't tell you how many times I've knocked my CR over and spilled paint everywhere! Last night I tried to balance it on the compressor, I of course then bumped it which ended up with yellow paint on the compressor, its cables and my workstation. Oh joy.

    Here are some other bits and pieces I've bought along the way, all of which I'd consider must have airbrushing equipment:

    -3M 6200 Respirator with 3M 60921 P100 cartridges (when spraying Enamels)
    -Dust Mask (when spraying Acrylics)
    -Windex (to clean airbrush)
    -Thinner (Acrylic or Enamel)
    -Spray booth (I made one out of an old box & sheets of plain white A4 paper)
    -Paints (duh!) - I've used Mr Hobby & Tamiya only, don't have a bad thing to say about either of them although my preference goes to Mr Hobby (you can pretty much spray it straight out of the bottle it's so thin)

    I could go on but that's a good enough start. I don't even know if anyone will use this thread (!) but hopefully someone finds it useful.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    31st Jan 2009


    thanks for the tips mate.
    i cant believe that you ghetto'd a spray booth out of paper... nice...
    what did you end up using for an exhaust fan?
    post a pick of it when you are free.

    im not as crafty as you and ended up buying a sparmax spray booth instead... however, it doubles nicely as a photobooth. lol.
    havent had issues with the moisture trap on mine yet so never thought about using a second inline moisture trap as well.
    talk about "double bagging" dude. lol.

    yep... you're right about the airbrush holder... need to get me one as well.
    actually i might duck into stanbridges now to see if they have any.

    the suggestion i might add, is that if you can, try to get yourself a side gravity feed air brush. the cup is located on the side so it doesnt block your view when you paint close up, and it is still a gravity feed which is "suppose" to be better for control and detail painting compared to a bottom feed. its not essential, but if you are just starting out then why not.

    also, if you can, try and get an airtank. its suppose to be better for the hot weather. what you do is paint using the air from the tank only and all the air compressor does is occasionally top up the tank when it runs below a certain limit (top up level is much at a higher pressure than your max working pressure so you still have a steady flow). that way if your air compressor overheats and hits a thermal cut out, you can still continue painting with the air supplied from the tank. plus the air compressor is not on constantly which means longer times for it to overheat.

    lastly, an air brush is great for dusting and cleaning your transformers as well.
    add a bit of water and also got yourself a nice way to cool yourself down in the (just make sure you clean it real good first )

    not sure why your compressor is maxing out at 23psi though. it sounds like you havent adjusted your pressure control valve and its maxing out the output pressure at the valve level. but you did mention you cranked up your idle pressure to 50+ psi which means you would have adjusted the pressure control valve, so not sure whats happening there? maybe you have a second valve somewhere? i dont have an iwata or a second moisture trap so i dunno. just guessing.

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