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How to thin Revell enamel for airbrushing?

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  • Member since
    February, 2012
  • From: Central/Eastern Europe
How to thin Revell enamel for airbrushing?
Posted by felhasznaaloo on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 2:44 AM

I am just beginning to try airbrushing. I recently bought a pretty decent used compressor with a tank, and also got a used cheap Chinese airbrush with it. Looks like some Iwata copy with a 0.5 nozzle. 

I'd like to paint two motors Ford engine blue, and thought about using the Revell enamels I got together with a kit that Santa brought me.

I have colors #50 and #52, the colors listed in the kit instructions to be mixed half'n'half for Ford engine blue.

Now I have read about 'milk consistency' for airbrushing. That is a bit hard for me to interpret. 

Is there maybe another way of explaining how to thin this enamel with the so called 'color mix' thinner? Like 1 part enamel 1 part thinner? 

Also, if I decant Tamiya TS spray paint, do I need to thin it for airbrushing with a 0.5 nozzle?

Thanks!

  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: Nashua, New Hampshire
Posted by mrmike on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 6:35 AM

"Milk consistancy" is how milk looks when milk is splashed against the side of a glass.  You should be able to see through it, but not very well.  This is how I determine if paint is ready for an airbrush.  Just add thinner until you get that milky look in the airbrush container.  I am not familiar with the Revell brand of paints or thinners as they must be a European only product, so I can't advise you on that.  

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

Robert Urich Spenser For Hire 1985

On my bench-1961 Chevrolet Impala SS 409; Aston Martin DB4; Cadillac Escalade

Classic Plastic Model Club

  • Member since
    December, 2003
  • From: Nova Scotia
Posted by Bainford on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 8:14 AM

Yup, just as Mike says. If you have some milk in a glass and you stick a stir stick into the milk and pull a drop up the side of the glass and let it go and watch it run back down the side of the glass, this is roughly the consistency of paint you are looking for. 

The 'consistency of milk' thing is a bit arbitrary but gives you some idea of the paint consistency you are shooting for. However, it has been my experience that mixing paint and thinner 1:1 will get you very close in most cases. A little extra thinner is generally better than too thick. As you experiment you will find that thinning paint becomes quite natural. Feel free to experiment with paint that is too thin and that is too thick (on scrap bodies, or whatever) to find what works best for you and your equipment.

Also, you didn't ask but since this is your first airbrush, you will be shooting paint at between 20 psi and 30 psi, though keep the pressure to the lower end of this scale if you can. Again, experience will show what works best for you and your equipment.

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

Trevor

  • Member since
    February, 2012
  • From: Central/Eastern Europe
Posted by felhasznaaloo on Tuesday, February 26, 2019 10:10 AM

Thanks a lot for the detailed replies, MrMike and Bainford! That makes it christal clear.

Today I painted with decanted Tamiya spray paint at 20 psi, and it seemed to work right. Next comes the enamel thinning fun...

  • Member since
    July, 2005
  • From: Australia
Posted by scalepeter on Wednesday, March 13, 2019 8:58 AM

I mix my gloss enamel paints at a ratio of two parts thinner to three parts paint,  flat at one parts thinner to three parts paint.  I use this as a guide and usually is a pretty good ratio to use.    I never understood the "milk consistency" for mixing paints either.   Automotive paints are mixed to certain ratios not consistency.    I use small disposable medicine cups to mix my paint up in.  I genrally do a test spray to see how the mix is spraying.  Hope this helps you out.

  • Member since
    February, 2012
  • From: Central/Eastern Europe
Posted by felhasznaaloo on Wednesday, March 13, 2019 12:12 PM

Thank you Scalepeter, that's great help, I'll note this down.

  • Member since
    May, 2015
Posted by Goofy62 on Wednesday, March 13, 2019 8:28 PM

I mix my enamel to the same consistancy that everyone else recommends, except I use lacquer thinner.

This will make the enamel cure at a much faster rate than enamel thinner or mineral spirits.

 

 

Steve 

  • Member since
    February, 2012
  • From: Central/Eastern Europe
Posted by felhasznaaloo on Saturday, March 16, 2019 3:07 AM
Thank you.
  • Member since
    January, 2005
  • From: Canberra, Australia
Posted by aussiemuscle308 on Saturday, March 16, 2019 8:34 PM
i typically start with 1:1 (1 bit paint, equal amount thinner). you'll soon work out if it's too thin or too thick.
  • Member since
    February, 2012
  • From: Central/Eastern Europe
Posted by felhasznaaloo on Monday, March 18, 2019 11:15 AM

Thank you.

So far my observation is: speckles in fresh paint means too thick, easily running paint (even thin paint is blown away by air from airbrush) means too thin. Am I getting it?

  • Member since
    August, 2005
  • From: Nashua, New Hampshire
Posted by mrmike on Tuesday, March 19, 2019 6:58 AM

I'm curious about the Revell paints.  Who makes it since I think it is not Revell manufacturered product?    

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

Robert Urich Spenser For Hire 1985

On my bench-1961 Chevrolet Impala SS 409; Aston Martin DB4; Cadillac Escalade

Classic Plastic Model Club

  • Member since
    February, 2012
  • From: Central/Eastern Europe
Posted by felhasznaaloo on Tuesday, March 19, 2019 7:23 AM

It says made in Germany by Revell GmbH, a subsidiary of Hobbico Inc.

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