Your favorite tools, tips or tricks of 2021!


skahtul

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I thought it might be fun to see what people have discovered this modeling year. Feel free to share any tools or techniques you found this year that others might be able to utilize on their own builds.

For me, it was mostly made of messing with Archive-X paints and testing out every type of chrome paint and weathering technique I could find. But in the tools department, I really found these three super useful.

I have really come to enjoy using weathering pencils, it makes getting something down precisely where you want it super easy:
IMG_20211204_211732694.jpg



I really like how this super glue operates, it's super precise and easy to get it only where you need it. It never drips out unless you are squeezing the sides and the tip is the perfect size:

IMG_20211204_211654193.jpg


I have been using metal sculpting tools for the past few years to put putty down onto my models, that is no longer the case, these flexible silicone tipped brushes are so much easier for me!

IMG_20211204_211612611.jpg


And last but certainly not least is my new airbrush. This is the first year I have started painting with something besides my $30 specials from Amazon and let me tell you, this airbrush is worth every single penny!

The primary reason I picked this up is that I have some nerve issues and the typical airbrushes really hurt my hands after only a few minutes, this brush is light years ahead in both comfort and control, I really love this thing:
IMG_20211204_211622664.jpg


What do you have?
 

joberg

Master Member
TFS with us those products skahtul(y) That airbrush is double-action I believe? Also; you're right about that Gorilla crazy glue: very easy to use and a great product to have handy on your work table!
 

skahtul

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
TFS with us those products skahtul(y) That airbrush is double-action I believe? Also; you're right about that Gorilla crazy glue: very easy to use and a great product to have handy on your work table!

Yes, double action, the only way to go :)
 
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Analyzer

Master Member
I may have to give those weathering pencils a try as well as those silicon brushes

For me the most recent useful tool has been a Wet Palette

Although I have heard of them before, I had never used them thinking it would not make a difference

In the past year or so I have been using it and cannot believe I never tried it earlier

For acrylic figure painting it has made a huge difference in keeping my paint mixes usable for longer and keeping them thin without drying. Funny enough, in some cases, I could cover it, come back the next day and the paints would still be usable

I use the plastic packages that Privateer Press Warmachine/Hordes miniatures come in since them already have a sponge like foam, and snap tight. I just cut out an appropriate sized rectangle or parchment paper used for baking and add some water. (note, do not use Wax Paper)

 

skahtul

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I may have to give those weathering pencils a try as well as those silicon brushes

For me the most recent useful tool has been a Wet Palette

Although I have heard of them before, I had never used them thinking it would not make a difference

In the past year or so I have been using it and cannot believe I never tried it earlier

For acrylic figure painting it has made a huge difference in keeping my paint mixes usable for longer and keeping them thin without drying. Funny enough, in some cases, I could cover it, come back the next day and the paints would still be usable

I use the plastic packages that Privateer Press Warmachine/Hordes miniatures come in since them already have a sponge like foam, and snap tight. I just cut out an appropriate sized rectangle or parchment paper used for baking and add some water. (note, do not use Wax Paper)


That is great, I am going to give that a try for sure. I always like to weather kits over two or three days, and I often mix colors to get the effect I am looking for but of course, they dry up in no time unless I am using oils.

Thanks!
 

Iwatajim

New Member
Great thread!

I like to use old Jenga blocks to mount parts for painting. Double sided tape for some parts, block is small enough to allow airbrushing from all angles. Other blocks have small holes drilled and parts mounted on toothpicks which are easy to lift and replace for painting. Probably started doing this as they were just there, but seems to work for me.

EDCAAF10-10B2-49D8-9D4C-D20D303078FC.jpeg
4F9B05E9-9D3C-403C-AD64-804D61D03130.jpeg
 

Sluis Van Shipyards

Legendary Member
I'll have to try a set of those pencils. Weathering is my weakest skill, so I need all the help I can get! I've done chipping with silver pencils, but haven't used any like those. Are they like pastels in pencil form?
 

skahtul

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I'll have to try a set of those pencils. Weathering is my weakest skill, so I need all the help I can get! I've done chipping with silver pencils, but haven't used any like those. Are they like pastels in pencil form?

I have really been struggling with getting the right 'streaking' effect that you see a lot of on the Falcon, it's one of the reasons I have not yet built it...


You basically draw on your streaks and then blend with water, pretty easy :)
 
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Attirex

Well-Known Member
I have really been struggling with getting the right 'streaking' effect that you see a lot of on the Falcon, it's one of the reasons I have not yet built it...


You basically draw on your streaks and then blend with water, pretty easy :)
Thanks for vid! I'm in same boat - I put base coat on my FM Falcon several years ago and haven't touched it since because getting the weathering right is intimidating. :( In my Dream World (tm), some long lost ILM-er would pop up in these forums and give tips on how they did it.
 

joberg

Master Member
Great thread!

I like to use old Jenga blocks to mount parts for painting. Double sided tape for some parts, block is small enough to allow airbrushing from all angles. Other blocks have small holes drilled and parts mounted on toothpicks which are easy to lift and replace for painting. Probably started doing this as they were just there, but seems to work for me.

View attachment 1518555 View attachment 1518556
Good trick those blocks! I usually use sheets of blue foam and tooth picks...works well also;)
 

Sluis Van Shipyards

Legendary Member
Thanks for vid! I'm in same boat - I put base coat on my FM Falcon several years ago and haven't touched it since because getting the weathering right is intimidating. :( In my Dream World (tm), some long lost ILM-er would pop up in these forums and give tips on how they did it.

Yes that would actually be a big help if some former ILM guys would do weathering tips or just show how they did what they did on the OT models. I think I'm going to just do a fun scratchbuild or something I can test weathering on. I'm usually too scared I'm going to ruin my model by really trying anything new. I need something that's just a testbed that I'm not really worried if it comes out looking like a clown.
 

skahtul

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Yes that would actually be a big help if some former ILM guys would do weathering tips or just show how they did what they did on the OT models. I think I'm going to just do a fun scratchbuild or something I can test weathering on. I'm usually too scared I'm going to ruin my model by really trying anything new. I need something that's just a testbed that I'm not really worried if it comes out looking like a clown.

For sure, that is actually a great tool tip :)

I have an old star destroyer kit I used to use for testing weathering. Now I have a cheap sub and tank I picked up at my local hobby shop. I literally just use them for testbeds and constantly re-paint them. That's also what I love about 3D printing so much, I have a bunch of 3D printed rejects I use for testing.

That is also why I love weathering with oils so much (well, that and the fact they just add a certain authenticity to the overall effect). With oils, you can literally come back a day or so later and pretty much wipe it all away. Also, gloss coats are great for when you are trying something new as you can usually just wipe off whatever you just put down also. I don't use gloss/flat coast as much as I used to but they do make it 'safer' in my opinion.
 

Noumcea

Well-Known Member
If doing a final matt coat using Vallejo through an airbrush and it has gone dusty after drying, hit the model with the Vellejo thinner and let it dry. This removes the dusty / cloudy look. Then use their Matt Medium mixed with water as the final coat. I found this out when a week ago I was finishing an S.F. 3D Krote. I thought I had screwed it up and would have to strip the paint with Dettol and start over. After many hours of research and looking at various methods, this worked the best for me. Hope that helps.
 

Darph Bobo

Well-Known Member
Bought a pair of ACTUAL hobby nippers (Tamiya Sharp Pointed Side Cutters No. 123), I’ve alway just used wire nippers/ nippers that came with my 3D printers; well I was a fool, a babe lost, LOST in the woods! These things cut the sprue like a knife through butter! Totally worth the money! I might need to spend the extra and try the God Hand nippers, I hear those are second to none!

it’s true what Scotty said, “the right tool for the right job!”
 

Sluis Van Shipyards

Legendary Member
I had never heard of the God Hand nippers until recently and it seems like they are so fragile that if you sneeze while using them, they're ruined. I've used Xuron flush cutters for years and I can't see that those would do that much better that it would be worth it. I think any flush cutters are going to require some sanding once you cut them off anyway. Of course, I've been wrong once before. :lol:
 

Joseph C. Brown

Well-Known Member
Yes that would actually be a big help if some former ILM guys would do weathering tips or just show how they did what they did on the OT models. I think I'm going to just do a fun scratchbuild or something I can test weathering on. I'm usually too scared I'm going to ruin my model by really trying anything new. I need something that's just a testbed that I'm not really worried if it comes out looking like a clown.
You have seen Fon Davis's two DVD set, Introduction to Professional Model Making? Amazon shows it out-of-stock, but it regularly shows up on eBay for under $30.00 - the section on painting and weathering is worth the price.
 

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