A Good Primer?

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Justin1

New Member
Well, at this point, I think it may be me...

I posted a while ago in the Huntorials section, and got very little help, and since I'm working with (almost strictly) figures and models, I figured I'd ask some of the fellow paint-slingers what they think.

I was using Krylon Gray, which if anyone followed my WIP articles, wasn't something I was too ecstatic about. The finish was often very grainy, with large, VISIBLE particles all over the piece.

I then discovered a local retailer who carries Armory Figure Primer, both gray and black. And if I didn't know any better, I'd say I'm getting a similar sort of nonsense on some pieces I just reprimed.

Is there something wrong with the way I'm operating here? Are these cans of primer just too old? I shake the cans for AT LEAST 2 - 3 minutes. If I go in multiple sprays, in light sprays, "spritzing" the piece, I really think it gives it that graininess I detest so much. If I do a thick coat, it obviously clumps and turns gross with all of those little pits where the paint ends up pooling and drying. Is that grotesque graininess just something I'm going to have to cope with? What does everyone else use? What am I doing wrong? :D
 

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Justin1

New Member
It's a resin kit, just like any you'd find distributed by Dan/sculpted by Narin. I wash the pieces by hand with regular dish liquid, let them dry over night. I go about the prep process by sanding/filing down seam lines, filling in pinholes/air bubbles, resculpting lost detail. I'll let the MagicSculpt cure, then give the pieces one last wash to make sure there's no dust or anything residual from all the sanding. The next day, I prime. That's it.

I'll try and take some pics of the pieces, particularly the bits that are especially "grainy," but I can't say how helpful they'll be.
 

Justin1

New Member
Well, this is absolutely the best I could do with my cell phone, as my girlfriend has our digital camera with her in Virgina. The picture doesn't quite capture how grainy it REALLY is. At a distance, it's not too noticeable, but when you're scrutinizing the details of the piece, it looks like it's covered in tiny particles. It's really distracting to me, and I'm hoping I'm just doing something wrong and I can fix it, lol.
 

shockwave1

New Member
Doesn't look too bad actually.

Primers are not only great for paint adhesion, but will also show every single imperfection in the piece. You can use that to your advantage though - if there are any areas that you're not happy with you can fill or sand as needed and re-apply primer to the area. Alot of model makers will actually apply a light coat of primer onto the seams along the way, well before it's all ready to paint, just to make sure everything is looking good.

The tiny little particles are actually normal for primers and other matte paints - it's what prevents the paint from being smooth, ie gloss. For a nice smooth finish you can carefully wet sand it with say a 2000 grit sand paper, then give it a little wash with water and wipe it clean. Let it dry and you're ready to paint. If you've sanded some primer right off, or you think it's too thin in some areas, re-apply and re-sand. It can be a little monotonous, but if you're nice and careful sanding you should be fine without too much mucking around. You can also use this method if you want a deep colour or mirror finish to your paint, apply your gloss paint or sealer coats respectively and then wet sand and clean in between until you're happy. HTH :D
 

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Justin1

New Member
Well, I tried to take some better shots with my parents' digital camera, but to no avail. They were of an even worse quality than the cell phone pics. I'll try wet sanding some of the parts that don't have too much detail sculpted in, but it's just not very practical for certain portions of the piece. I know it's not "normal" for the finish to be as grainy as it's coming out, because certain parts of the finish are perfect, so the fact that it's coming out like that at times is what's so frustrating. That band going over his shoulder is one of the worst spots on the entire thing. At some point, I'll try and take a better picture with my digital camera before I get all my new paints (FreeStyle brand, Thanks, Barbara! :D ) and start painting. Like I said, it's not like that over the entire piece, so I'm wondering if I'm just holding the piece too far away when I spray?

I'd always read that you wanna have it 10 - 12 inches away, and that you basically just want to "dust" it with the primer, and to keep building up layers like that, but now, in retrospect, maybe THAT's why I'm getting grainy patches like that?
 

shockwave1

New Member
Then that does sound like you're spraying a bit too far away. It should say on the can, but if you're using a figure/model primer the best spraying distance is normally around 6-8 inches (15-20cm).

Again, a little sanding will smooth that off. For hard to reach places you can wrap a bit of sandpaper around a toothpick or an ice-cream stick held in place with a drop of super glue or blue tack. Good luck bud. :D
 

csoldier

New Member
Over here in the UK I 've always tended to use acrylic primer for motor vehicles and have never had any problem. I've used grey and white although I think there are more colours available.

The brand I use is Halfords, not much use granted if they don't operate outside of the UK, but auto primer may be a viable alternative and it dries fairly quick as well.
 

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Justin1

New Member
Well, guys, let me just say I REALLY appreciate all the responses, and the help! I can't believe it was something as simple as holding the can closer, and that holding it just a few inches nearer could make such a difference. I guess I was just nervous about holding it TOO close and flooding the piece with the primer. Needless to say, I just primed my second Death Warrior kit, and WOW! It's perfect!

I can't thank you guys enough, even if it was something so stupid, because it was REALLY irritating me for a LONG time! Thanks again, fellas!
 

Sl0100

New Member
id try some of the Duplicolor sandable primer.its expensive bt so are these kits.
there are 2 kinds,be sure not to get the "filler" primer,unless you need to fill over some detail.
once the part is dry,i will sometimes use that 2000 grit sandpaper and hold the part in the shower or sink and wet sand it.that will help you get that rough stuff off.
also,watch your technique on applying it,use a side to side motion,spray as you go by the part,dont spray the whole time.apply light coats,usually takes 4-6 passes to get a first coat on.
and go slow!!! :p
 

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