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Food for thought , do resin figures really need a primer

Discussion in 'General Figure Talk' started by Ron Tamburrini, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. Ron Tamburrini A Fixture

    Hi guys
    While cleaning up my latest project and looking at all the fine detail,a thought occurred ,
    why bother priming as I will lay on some of the undercoats with an airbrush.
    Any thoughts on this. o_O

  2. jcichon Active Member

    I think it depends on the type of paint. You can airbrush Reaper paints right on with out priming. I personally like to use vallejo airbrush primer. I hav not tried with other paints. I am interested in knowing how it works for you
  3. Ron Tamburrini A Fixture

    I have moved on to G/W base for my undercoating, but would probably air brush with humbrol first if I don't use one of the usual primers , but haven't tried this yet , over painting in oils
  4. housecarl Moderator

    I tend to airbrush Tamiya of a similar colour as the top coat, so I suppose I only undercoat.
    I can see where you're coming from with regards losing detail.
  5. jcichon Active Member

    I find GW hard to thin for airbrushing. NEVER use alcohol to thin GW!!! I learned the hard way!
  6. Tecumsea PlanetFigure Supporter

    Hi Ron, it is not necessary to prime resin figures if you are using resin paints as there is nothing to react with the resin, as I know you are an oil painter I would recommend priming to stop any possible reaction between the oils, any solvents you use and the Resin
  7. itsonlyakit Member

    One suggestion on priming a resin figure is that it would show up any imperfections. Sometimes an alternate color gives a fresh perspective.
    Cheers Eh!
  8. Tecumsea PlanetFigure Supporter

    Good point Gordon
  9. FigureLover A Fixture

    I prime my resin figures by either of two ways (I also do this for metal figures come to think of it), sometimes I airbrush a Tamiya base coat of a colour similar to the final colour as said above, I can thin this paint to a consistency that I feel is right for the figure, the finer the detail on the figure, the thinner I want the paint. The other way is to use Tamiya surface primer in a spray can(grey only as the white seems not to hold the subsequent paint layers as well), but I heat the can in hot water (not quite boiling) first, this thins the primer and you get all the great detail showing through. Having said this, I probably wouldnt use the spray can on a 54mm or smaller.
  10. YellowBear Active Member

    With my experience with resin garage kit. I felt priming give better surface for paint to stick on. [USER=3886]Ben[/USER] I do always use spray can on 54 mm and smaller, the trick is quick/dash spray each time. Works alright.
  11. Don Well-Known Member

    Ronnie, dont know what your worried about, your painting is terrific and as for priming, whats wrong with the way you are doing it?

  12. IIICorps Active Member

    I prime resin and metal.
  13. Glen Active Member

    I prime metal and resin using Floquil Model Railroad Gray Primer thinned with lacquer thinner and I brushed on. I let it gas out for 24 hours before painting. I'm using Reaperacrylic paints and I've never had any issues with paint flaking or wearing off. Others in the NTFC are using Tamiya Fine Spray primer, while others are still using sandable automotive primers (gray or white) to good effect.
  14. bonehead A Fixture

    You do not need to prime resin. I have noticed a recent trend in the model magazines (models, not figures!) where many modelers are suddenly priming everything before applying final colors. I think this is more of a monkey see, monkey do sort of thing. Priming a plastic or resin model before applying color coats is generally a sign of obsessive/compulsive disorder. Plastic does not need primer unless you are painting it with a "hot" lacquer. Neither does resin. In fact, you can paint those corrosive lacquers over resin with no ill effects.

    Metal, however, does require a primer because most paints will not adhere properly to a bare metal surface. Applying primer when it is not necessary is pointless. And as Ron points out, it will tend to fill in fine detail. That is really counterproductive if you want to create detailed models.

    I like to think that thoughtful modelers will actually think about what they are doing, and why, rather than simply doing something compulsively just because they saw somebody else do it.....:cautious:
  15. Einion Well-Known Member

    I don't think you can say you need to prime resin, but it can certainly be a good idea.

    The surface of the casting and how much handling you need to do are big factors. But a lot depends on the type of paint as already mentioned: some paints, like enamels, are tough and form strong bonds with many surfaces; others, like *cough* most water-borne hobby paints *cough* aren't and don't.

    If you degrease the surface of resin well you can get water-borne paints not to bead up when first applied, which can easily make you can think everything is going fine, but just a little handling (necessary handling, not holding the kit during painting) can show how wrong this impression is.

    First-hand experience with paint wearing through on the high spots is the very thing that led many modellers to look for proper primers in the first place and to subsequently recommend them.

  16. Ron Tamburrini A Fixture

    Some good points there from both Mike G and Einion. So does air brushing humbrols direct in the base colour constitute a primer o_O

  17. Einion Well-Known Member

    It can, yes. It won't provide as robust a base as Hycote primer for example but it can be good enough. Say you were doing a bust that is already mounted on the display base prior to painting, much less worry about rub-off in that kind of situation so no absolute need to use a primer to help prevent it.

  18. bonehead A Fixture

    Sure, an enamel undercoat could be construed as a "primer". However, if it is an actual color coat, then it does not add any extra layers of paint to the model. Now putting a gray "undercoat" on something you intend to paint red is a primer coat and not a color coat.

    Of course all of this is academic and compulsive hair-splitting. The point is to avoid adding extra unnecessary coats of paint that could obscure detail. Except with metal figures, I still hold that this is unnecessary and counterproductive.
  19. Einion Well-Known Member

    So have to ask: would you include VMC et al in that Mike?

    It is of course good practice to try to avoid any unnecessary coats (of anything, clearcoats very much included) but I certainly don't think the primer/no primer thing is just academic for some painters.


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