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thinning enamel

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  • Member since
    June, 2018
thinning enamel
Posted by gorilla1 on Friday, June 22, 2018 1:30 AM

Can you use 100% mineral spirits to thin enamel paint for airbrushing?

  • Member since
    December, 2003
  • From: Nova Scotia
Posted by Bainford on Friday, June 22, 2018 8:39 AM

The answer is probably yes. Technically it seems should work, but one must be aware that any given paint product may react unpredictably with other compounds used in model finishing. In my younger days with my first airbrush I could only find Testors thinner in the little bottles, which became costly to use since I was buying it with lawn mowing money, so I experimented with less costly paint thinners that Dad had in the basement. Many of these experiments did not work, though I have long since forgotten the specific products I used.

Clearly, if you are experimenting with thinners, try it on a scrap body first. And remember, bad reactions with other products (paints, primers, fillers, plastic, etc) can occur. The thinner used may also require altering your air brushing technique.

Personally, I would recommend sticking with the thinners made for the paint you are using, or use cheap hardware store lacquer thinners. Many builders, myself included, are using lacquer thinners for thinning hobby lacquers and enamels with good result. However, I encourage experimentation, so if you try it, let us know how it works.

Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.
       - Antoine de Saint-Exepury


  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: Nashua, New Hampshire
Posted by mrmike on Friday, June 22, 2018 2:21 PM

I would recommend using lacquer thinner.  Thin your paint to the consistancy of milk with the thinner and then spray it on a scrap body to check if it will work for you.  The best thing for you is to experiment a bit with mixtures to see what works best for you.  Once you find that level, stick with it.

"That's Spenser with an 'S' like the poet."

Robert Urich Spenser For Hire 1985

On my bench-1961 Chevrolet Impala SS 409; Ford Transit Mk2

Classic Plastic Model Club


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