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How to paint or simulate clear lights not provided as clear parts?

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  • Member since
    February 2020
How to paint or simulate clear lights not provided as clear parts?
Posted by Plum-Crazy on Sunday, March 1, 2020 6:16 AM

Hi folks. I am working on an AMT impala. The brake lights are provided as red plastic inserts into the bumper; however, the back up lights are not provided but are molded into the bumper. I don't think the back up lights were chrome on the real deal. What would be the best technique for making the back ups more realistic? Thanks.

  • Member since
    August 2005
  • From: Nashua, New Hampshire
Posted by mrmike on Sunday, March 1, 2020 7:07 AM

I either use Aluminium metalizer or a thinned flat white paint for my chromed lights.

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

Robert Urich Spenser For Hire 1985

Classic Plastic Model Club

  • Member since
    March 2012
Posted by AstroDad on Sunday, March 1, 2020 2:38 PM

I use Bondic (or similar) directly over the chrome in small amounts until the "correct look" is achieved.

  • Member since
    January 2017
Posted by 195X on Sunday, March 1, 2020 2:51 PM

AstroDad

I use Bondic (or similar) directly over the chrome in small amounts until the "correct look" is achieved.

 

Unfamiliar with Bondic, what is that? Never mind, got it.

My favorite color is clear. I am also ambidexterous, I can screw up equally well with either hand. I am 53 years old and been building for most of that time. :)

On the bench... somewhere. Pink Panther show car, 1978 Dodge Magnum Charger Daytona Midnight edition SE 300. Mongrel T.

  • Member since
    February 2020
Posted by Painted Black on Sunday, March 1, 2020 2:55 PM

Depending on your skill level, try cutting lenses from clear sprue, or to get some detail use an old headlight to cut them out.

  • Member since
    January 2017
Posted by 195X on Sunday, March 1, 2020 6:43 PM

I use a resin casting kit to make my lenses when necessary. I made a mold with three or four different sizes (Round and rectangle) pop out a new set when I need them. :)

A kit is relatively inexpensive but, to cast something that small in clear it needs a post cure with heat so, the oven will be running.

Of course in this case it would require removing the lights from the bumper or casting it entirely in clear. I use an off white wash (most backup lights are white) and build up the washes until it looks right.

My favorite color is clear. I am also ambidexterous, I can screw up equally well with either hand. I am 53 years old and been building for most of that time. :)

On the bench... somewhere. Pink Panther show car, 1978 Dodge Magnum Charger Daytona Midnight edition SE 300. Mongrel T.

  • Member since
    December 2003
  • From: Nova Scotia
Posted by Bainford on Monday, March 2, 2020 7:21 AM

For chrome plated reverse lamp lenses, I apply  2-3 coats of very thin gloss white paint until I achieve the effect I'm looking for.

"It would be unusual, if the unusual didn't occur."

- Steamboat Gariepy

Trevor

  • Member since
    November 2004
  • From: Winnipeg Canada
Posted by Wayne Farmer on Monday, March 9, 2020 12:45 AM
Tamiya flat clear with about 1/32 " of white(on bottom of toothpick) mixed..The one or two coats depending on your taste of looks..

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