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acrylic problem

Discussion in 'Acrylics' started by gforceman, Aug 22, 2017.

  1. gforceman Well-Known Member

    Hi all,

    I am wondering if someone has come across the following problem, or even beter has a solution?
    I wash, and prime my models the normal way (spraycan, black, then white overspray). The basecoat I lay on with a brush, no problem so far. Then during the highlight stage, can be with the first coat, can be with thethird or so, there seem to appear spot where the surface has become super smooth and the paint doesn't adhere anymore, making blending impossible. At first I thought that the previous layer wasn't dry enough, so now I'm drying each layer with an hairdryer. I dillute normaly with demineralized water and have expermented with glazing medium, without any possitive result. I use mainstream brands, Vallejo, Andrea, Scale 75, Citadel, etc... I do shake well and have those metal balls in my jars of paint to help mix the pigment and carrier even better. I have tried to wait, up to 48hours, to overpaint a new basecoat but this then doesn't adhere too or dries glossy. I've tried going over it with a matt varnish but this doesn't help either. Only 'solution' I have found so far is to overpaint with an enamel and start again from there. Sometimes it works, but sometimes these 'glossspots' reappear, sometimes even in other places.

    At the moment I've started to repaint a jacket of a bust for the fifth time, basecoat dried glossy this time, and I'm becomming very, very, frustrated. I'm thinking of either looking for a new hobby or maybe switch back to oils. Any help, suggestions, thoughts etc... are very much appreciated as I'm starting to loose sleep over this problem.

    Many thanks in advance,

  2. housecarl Moderator

    Airbrush prime with Tamiya acrylics Gino, I've never had a problem.
  3. Alex A Fixture

    I use tamiya primer in a can and Vallejo acrylics mainly

    And I wear nitrile gloves all the time when preparing and painting my figures so my skin will never touch the painted surface.

    If the surface is contaminated with natural oils, acrylic paint will not adhere properly

    Also, It might be beneficial to sand lightly the shiny surface in order to promote adhesion.
    If the surface is too slick, no paint will adhere properly. The surface should not be smooth as glass !

    Also, the more you touch the surface with your fingers, the smoother it will become so use a holder if required
  4. Alex A Fixture

    also what are your usual dilution ratios ?

    For 90% of my work, my dilution ratio varies between 1 Vallejo to 1 water up to 1:3
  5. KenBoyle PlanetFigure Supporter

    Based on your painting approach, I can only assume your primer, either the white or black, is the problem. Since you seem to have a problem primarily with highlights, I would assume the white primer is the culprit since it helps define the highlights. Nothing else you do is any different than what I and others do. I have tried several different spray primers with mixed results and since I do not have a airbrush I must use a spray can.

    I would not recommend any specific primer as techniques vary. For the record, I use Rust-oleum 2x-ultra cover in a reddish brown color purchased at Walmart. A color similar to auto body primer. This is a dead flat primer that shrinks as it dries to a skin tight smooth coat and takes acrylic paint beautifully. After priming, I undercoat each part of the figure with Reaper walnut brown brush on paint as I work instead of the black and white approach you use. To each his own.

    Anyway, my suggestion is to try a different white primer brand and see how it goes.

  6. megroot A Fixture

    I believe the only solution is to go back to the oils :D
    Sorry, couldn't help it, or help you as I'm a oilman.

    Blind Pew and napoleonpeart like this.
  7. gforceman Well-Known Member

    hi guys,

    thank you very much for all your help in this search to solve my paint problem. I feel motivated again, have been painting a bit earlier and had fun again. What a difference with the last couple of days; which were all about frustration!

    Hello Carl and Alex,

    I will give the Tamiya primer a try. Normally I use Games Workshop of which the black is a bit too smooth for my taste, and the white can give a coarse finish if you spray from too far away. The Army Painter's primer was better and Scale 75 I liked the most so far. Problem is that I don't find this where I live.
    I've started to wear gloves about 13 years ago, and never touch the figures with my bear skin once they are washed and rinsed. A word of caution for those who want to start wearing gloves : always buy those without talcum powder. This powder will mix with your paint and give a terrible result. What kind of grid for the sanding paper would you recommend? I have up to 2000 and can easily obtain up to 5000.
    Well, on the CMON forum someone suggested I was dilluting my paint too much. I never thought this was possible! So today I painted with a less diluted mix and so far it works! I have done only the two first highlights, so I'll need to do 3 or 4 more, then the shadows and then probably some glazing to smooth the transitions. I've watch a whole bunch of video tutorials on You tube, patreon and Twitch and had noticed the artists there were thinning much less then I do, but I never thought this could be the reason. Well, it seems I thought workng!

    Hello Ken,

    Over here in Belgium we don't have a Walmart, so I don't think I will be able to get exactly the same primer as you suggest. Will switch all my primer to Scale 75 though, I can always order some through the internet.

    Hoi Marc,

    But then I would get the same results I had 20 years ago! No just kidding, but you know I'm a slow painter and when using oils I think I might be able to finish a figure each 5 years or so. Plus the fact that I don't like the idea that when you paint something in oils all can look just as you want only to discover a couple of days later that once dry most of the contrast has gone!

    Last night being greatly sleepless I was also thinking that I might not rinse my figures well enough. So maybe some washing up liquid might remain on the surface. Another reason I thought of is that I'm a devoted brush licker, and maybe there's something in my spit that causes these problems. What do you guys think of these idea's.

    Anyhow, a HUGE thank you to all of you for helping me finding the fun back into figure painting. Other wise I would have start fishing or collecting stamps, two things that seem enormously boring to me. SO YOU GUYS ARE LIVESAFERS!

    KenBoyle likes this.
  8. megroot A Fixture


    I use the primer from the Action. It works like hell. I think its the same as Ken buys into the Wallmart.

    KenBoyle likes this.
  9. Fabricio_Fay Well-Known Member

    Helo Gino,

    Try the scale 75 primer, it can bee aplied by brush or airbrush, and there is a can version, that i never tried. I had experienced something like this several years ago, with a so smooth primer that the paint doesn't adere.

    Cheers from Brasil:coffee:

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