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Old 05-04-2008, 03:01 PM
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Painting metal parts on tools?

Hello,

I would like to know how you paint the metal parts of the tools on the track guards or the side of the tanks and vehicles?
My problem is that I have already tried several colors, but it ends up either too black or too silver... And both results just don't look real.

So how do you paint nice metal tools?

Thanks in advance,

Notger
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  #2  
Old 05-04-2008, 04:43 PM
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RickLawler RickLawler is offline
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I'm not the best figure painter, but I try! The point is, however, that I'm finding that a lot of what Juame Ortiz and Calvin Tan do with painting figures can be applied to vehicles. So, when it comes to say the tools, I've been giving them EACH tool more thought and attention. Similiar to the approach to painting figures, I try to paint to take into account light and shadow. For instance, if I'm working on the jack, I will use a darker (perhaps add some blue) color to the recesses and lower portions, while accentuating (sp?) the highlight areas by adding a lighter color.

Similarly, a tool handle can have a lighter "streak" running down the top length of the handle, while a subltle darker shade can carry up from the lower portions. It helps give them a little drama. Afterall, we are spending a great deal of time trying create highlights and shadow on our vehicles through pre/post shading, filters, washes, drybrush.....etc., so it makes sense that equal attention probably should be given to the vehicles' accoutrements.


For the metal parts, I usally begin with Vallejo's German Panzer Grey, then (and this part usually differs from build to build) I give the tools some lighter and darker tones, either by adding lighter greys or blues to the mix. Things like shovels I'll give a little bit of earth color as well on the spade, followed by a little pigments.

HERE IS THE TRICK!!!!! The very last step, the thing that makes it look metal.....are you ready?

I give the tool surfaces a light rub of pencil graphite with my finger. For the graphite, I just take a pencil and rub it over some sandpaper, then wipe my fingre through the powder, then rub it onto the tools. I do this on the corners and high wear areas of the vehicles also. Some pretty good examples can be found on some of the closeup shots of the T34, specifically the turret welds.

It's funny, but this one truly falls under the catagory of "trick" in my book. It's really too simple to be as effective as it is. I don't know why it's not used more often?

One last thing...I generally change the base color for every piece of equipment. They may all have some german grey, but each will have a slightly different mix. I just feel that it adds a little extra visual interest.

hope it helps,
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Old 05-04-2008, 05:44 PM
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I am with Rick on this one. I generally spend lots of time on the tools. Give them wear and tear, wood graining handles, oil spots and drips on moving parts etc. For metal I usually use a base of flat black then run on the graphite powder, then polish with a rubber tipped clay carving tool. for bright edges of shovels I sometimes add a tiny bit of powdered aluminum. (This is an model airplane supply that goes by the name of RJ polishing powders.) Iwill then add some dried dirt with pigments. For a bit o rust I use burnt umber oil paint in turpenoid.

HTH
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Old 05-05-2008, 01:19 PM
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Hello Rick and John,

Thank you very, very much for your help!
You guys can't imagine how much you have helped me with you answer!
I will definately try the trick with the graphite!

So thanks again for your help!

Best regards,

Notger
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Old 05-05-2008, 05:11 PM
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Yes, you have to be careful with "silver". It works fine for parts of an overall bare metal airplane, but tends to be much too bright for weathering. I prefer to use light-medium grey, with just a tough of metallic pigments.

The other thing to remember is that steel (typically used for tools) is very much darker than "silver", and only the slightest metallic sheen in a blue-grey base is needed.

Lastly, prowling around restored vehicles nad through war-surplus stores, almost every tool I have seen has a painted handle, not natural (unpainted) wood or clear varnish.

Cheers
Scott Fraser
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