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Model Railroading > Clear Coat

Date: 01/10/19 19:52
Clear Coat
Author: tomnoy3

I'll preface this that I dont currently have a layout so I spend most of my time arm-chairing working on rolling stock and weathering/decaling them.  What is everyone's recommendation for clearcoating a car?  I do not have a paint booth/airbrush, although I probably should get one, its the set up-clean up that holds me back from it, much like propane vs charcol grill opinions.  Normally I have used your standard Krylon rattle can, but it does have a but of an orange peal finish, and I think I have had some disolving issues with ink/paint that I had used for graffiti.

What works best for all of you here?  Thanks

Date: 01/10/19 21:00
Re: Clear Coat
Author: gnguy

Testors rattle can Gloss coat and Dull coat.  Get it at Michael's or Hobby Lobby.  both have 40% off coupons in their phone apps.  Each time I get near them I go in and buy a can with a coupon.  An air brush is better with finer coat but if you don't have one Testors is certainly better than Krylon.  Just watch out using an alcohol wash after dull coat.  Hazes the dull coat which can be a nice fading effect but practice first.  Can be reversed with another coat of dull coat.

Mike Stewart

Date: 01/11/19 03:43
Re: Clear Coat
Author: NSTopHat


There are several rattle can options for those who don't have a spray booth. Testor's makes a clear dull, semi-gloss and gloss coat in both their standard paint line as well as their Model Master's line. Tamiya also has the same three finish options of clear dull (it's labeled as flat), semi-gloss and gloss. I have tried Krylon and it is far too heavy for fine model applications. I have found that the Tamiya products offer a thinner and more even finish as opposed to either of the Testor's lines, even when pre-heating the rattle cans in warm water. Always start and finish spraying beyond the limits of the model, maintaining a 8-10" distance from the model, more lighter coats are better than fewer heavy coats. You can always add cooking time, you can't unburn it! (Yes, you can strip a model, but whatta pain that becomes.)

Another trick for holding models, is that I spray one side at a time, and I rest it in a cardboard egg carton, with the carton upside down. to create a cradle effect. It allows me to carry the model outside, sit it on the deck rail and rotate as needed to seal it and then quickly hit it with a hair dryer to accelerate the dry time of the surface. If you are dealing with a dis-assembled model there are paint tongs that can be used as well as Tamiya makes a rotating paint stand with adjustable body clips.

One final step that is key to using rattle cans is that after you have sprayed for the last time, turn the can upside down and spray it again. This will empty the spray mechanism and will clear the paint from the nozzle so that it doesn't partially or fully block the nozzle apeture for future usage.

Hope this helps.


Date: 01/11/19 09:44
Re: Clear Coat
Author: Jimmies

Another vote here for the Testors - take it outside if you can. And a vote against the Krylon because it sprays too thick and heavy for models.  I haven't tried the Tamiya, but I will sometime.


Date: 01/11/19 09:51
Re: Clear Coat
Author: sixaxlecentury

Tamiya TS80 Flat Clear (and the other variations) is such a superior product to the Testors.  

Date: 01/11/19 20:45
Re: Clear Coat
Author: tomstp

Tomnoy, get the air brush.  You will find hundreds of uses for it.

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