Help with Tamiya Putty


Well-Known Member
I picked up some Tamiya Basic Putty to fill in the seams on my Bandai R2 model and had a couple of quick questions.

I've never used putty before but watched a couple of youtube vids and the most common way to apply putty (out of vids I watched) was with a toothpick. Is this best method or have you guys found a better one?

Also, what grain sandpaper would be best for sanding?

(When I was in the hobby shop a customer saw me picking this up and said he sometimes used alcohol to thin the putty and make it easier to work with. I had already researched putty and never heard of this. It sounded like perhaps he's using too much to begin with, but I'm the novice. Anyone ever hear of or use this technique?)

On a side note, I grabbed some Tamiya Extra Thin Cement for future projects and was curious if anyone had recommendations or had hit any problems using the thin cement.

Sorry to impose, and thanks for any comments.



Sr Member

Thinning the putty is is fine, you can work longer before it starts to set.

The thin cement likes to wick down the seams. I find it handy on longer applications or if the parts didn't join in spots.


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Master Member
You can thin your putty with the Tamiya thin cement (if this is the one with the green cap) or acetone.

Ive been working for years with both and never had any problem, those are my fav stuff.

I apply putty with scrap styrene, old X-acto blade, silicone rubber and with a brush when thinned. Never used toothpick.


Sr Member
Best tool for applying various seam putties (which are used for filling minor surface & joint imperfections - not for major, or even perhaps minor contour remodeling) is anything that resembles a small (actually tiny) trowel or spade. It must be of a material that is inert and will not reactive with the putty, so for stronger solvent-based putties, polystyrene tools should be avoided. I use a steel clay sculpting tool that is shaped a bit like a knife blade (not like an Xacto #11 with the sharp point, but more like a #10 only narrower.) It is possible to use a wooden implement, but something shaped like a wood nail cuticle tool with its rounded edge wedge shape would work well. One pro modeler I know always preferred his finger, but I didn't want the VOC exposure that would entail... So, if you look a bit at clay shaping tools, you should get a good idea of what would work. Toothpicks, however, would tend to be too small in surface area to all application of proper amounts - tiny amounts tend to start to 'dry' too soon while applying and this creates problems.

Here is a link to a Google search result for some typical type tools. The shape is what is important...:
and another

I am not recommending these items BTW as I have no knowledge of them, just that these are typical. Having a pointed tool tip is useful when working with inside corners. Also, custom shapes can be cut from heavy card stock (such as dry goods boxes, i.e. cereal or cracker boxes) for use as contouring trowels. Just be aware such porous materials can absorb the putty's solvent and degrade the smoothness of the application (smoother = less sanding.)

Regards, Robert
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Sr Member
I use my finger or a toothpick depending on what I need to do. I keep a paper towel handy for wiping off any on my hands. I don't bother sculpting it too much because I only use it thinly, anything substantial that needs sculpting I use Aves. I use various grades of sanding boards, usually between 1000 and 6000 starting with lower grits and working into the higher grits.


Well-Known Member
Thanks for all the info, guys. Been using the putty and extra thin cement and love them both.

If you guys can handle one more noob question, I have some Star Wars hasbro toy vehicles that I paint and weather and now that I'm using putty a bit I was wondering what type of putty would I use to fill in the large holes that house the screws holding the toy together (hope that makes sense).

Generally the hasbro toys ships have a top/bottom or 2 sides that are screwed together. That leaves one side with multiple holes for the screws. I'm now interested in filling these in but from your remarks I don't think Tamiya putty is what I need for this.

Thanks again for all the help.


Sr Member
I would use Aves apoxie scupt to fill in most of the hole and then use your putty to finish off any remaining low areas. I had a bad experience with using too much putty and it melting parts.


Well-Known Member
As always, thanks for the info guys.

Hate wasting your time with noob questions, but you guys have saved me countless disasters. Just letting you know it is greatly appreciated.


Sr Member
Jimmer, all the noted putties are epoxy putties. I've not used the Aves product but most are two part compounds that require mixing (catalyst and resin). You may have even used it before in the form of a 'plumber's stick' which is a common cheap form of the epoxy material. Most just require equal parts, kneaded together to a smooth, homogenous consistency before application. If the plastic is really smooth (or 'oily) a bit of roughing up may be needed for best adhesion. Unlike 'solvent' based putties, epoxy adheres mechanically, i.e. by getting into the tiny scratches and turning rock hard. So, if the substrate flexes a lot or has nothing for the epoxy to 'key' into, it may not be the best. But for filling screw holes, it is perfect - unless you want to get to the screws later!

R/ Robert


New Member
For screw holes and the like I've always punched a disk of styrene and used that, similar to plugs on wood working projects and then a thin coat of putty to cover it.
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