When To Primer/Paint

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Well-Known Member
I posted this in the Model Tips and Techniques Forum but I thought since it pertained to Studio Scale I might get a faster response here:

I'm building my first studio scale scratch build and I'm going to be starting the kit bashing phase soon. My question is when should I primer and should I paint the parts as I glue them down or do I assemble the whole thing, primer/paint or what? I've seen pictures of some of the models here and it looked as if they were fully assembled and then primer/painted but how do you reach those "hard to get" places like under pipes, behind things, etc. if you go that route. Also what color of primer is best?

I know weathering comes last but before that I'm kinda lost.

Thanks in advance.

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Sr Member
Well i always paint last, i also tend to prime as i go too, like if i work on one area ill go prime it after to see how it looks, like im having a bash at my speeder today, i just scribed the panel lines and rivets and ill go prime them to see how they come out, its easier to see areas that need clean up i guess and mistakes can then be rectified, can make paint jobs a headache if its in an intricate place, but i just prefer to work that way......lee


Sr Member
Just don't prime any areas before you glue the kit parts down. If you do, they might stick for a while but will fall off later. If you look at the pics of SW and BSG miniatures under construction, you can see they primered often in order to see how the model was looking. As a result, many details came off later. Not to mention all the layers of paint that got built up and obscured some of the finer details. . .


Sr Member
Well since you posted this question here as well, I'll just repost my reply ;)

Well it really comes down to a piece by piece case really. It all depends on what you're building. If I'm building a kit one of the first things I do is a dry fit run to see of course part fit, but also if I'm going to have to do painting ahead of time. "If I put this piece in place now, will I be able to reach that crevass? And if I put the arm in place now will I be able to paint the strap underneath it?". Sometimes things do have to be painted ahead of time, other times it all can be painted at once. You'll also run into points where you can leave parts off until after painting so you CAN reach hard-to-reach spots...

There will be parts that in the end you'll want to leave off until you get the base form of the pod painted. Especially if there are layers of parts on top of one another somehow. really it just comes down to how confident you feel wielding a paintbrush/airbrush..... and whether you want to redo some of the previous painting if you goof and get some paint where it's not suppose to be

You can paint ahead of time Star-art, one just has to make sure to prep the piece if you're attaching it to a painted surface.... a simple bit of scraping on the paint to get back to the original surface where you're attaching the part and on the part itself if it's painted is all that's needed to properly stick a part if the base has been painted already. The tip of the xacto blade is perfect for this. I won't comment on the paint buildup mention as hopefully bcgd is better than that ;)

Oh and for a primer color, my choice is usually grey.... white or black primers always make the details difficult to see....

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