Tuesday 17 April 2012

Airbrushing German Armour - Take Two!

Not much blogging activity recently I'm afraid. This is mainly because my lightbox and girlfriend's phone camera (which is considerably better than mine) are in London whilst I'm at home in Lincolnshire. I've gotten tons of hobby time in but not the best means of recording it.

You may have seen this post about my attempts to airbrush some 15mm German Armour in the late-war tricolour scheme a few months ago. Last time I got the basecoat done (after a steep learning curve) but then completely bombed on the camo pattern itself. This time around, after taking into account all of the wonderful and informative comments and tips I received, I've had much more success and think I can tentatively say I've gotten the basics pretty much sorted. This time around I've used pre-mixed vallejo model air paints and this has eliminated many of the problems I had with splattering as well as saved a lot of time. I've also gotten the hang of regulating the pressure on the compressor and set it (generally) lower than previously, around 10-20 psi as opposed to 20-30, with much better results. The airbrush tip was also bent and a replacement has improved paintflow no end. 

As you can see in the pictures below the vehicles were originally painted in Vallejo green ochre. However, I wasn't happy with this shade and went for middlestone in the end, its darker, which I dislike at 15mm scale, but its much sandier and greener and looks to be a much better match to old photos/reproductions. 

Progress at the end of yesterday.

The old Green Ochre shade, not as nice as the Middlestone (altho I could swear that it has paled over the past 4 months sitting on the shelf, even tho it is not in sunlight). 

The sunlight has completely washed the colour out of this photo. 
Here's an old space marine I undercoated and had a practice on for the camo pattern (the green anyway). To me it looks a little dark. However, I'm running out of time and patience so it might well just have to do. I forgot to try removing the nozzle cap (to get finer lines) when doing this so the lines are too wide. I've since found that by dropping the pressure to 5-10psi and limiting the paint flow a lot I can get much thinner and more accurate, controlled lines, with a nice feathered edge. 

Since these photos were taken yesterday I've finished giving everything two coats and will hopefully be able to get the cam patterns done tomorrow afternoon, could be a bit of a marathon slog. There's no room for cock-ups. 

I need to investigate pin washing and work out whether I need to apply some-kind of drybrush or highlight before doing the camo or whether a wash will get the effect I'm after by itself. Any thoughts or advice, please share, preferably before/during tomorrow!


  1. Check out http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mRUlAr2ehWM&context=C4502d6bADvjVQa1PpcFPYiNh5vINYf2doHoMknIP7y-a8OQzQ3ek= and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=krcJpToClzo. The first one goes into a lot of detail and I'd definately recommend watching it through a few times.

    Whilst only the second one deals with basic two tone camo it definately helped me when it came to airbrushing my tanks.

  2. Those both look very useful, The first is perhaps a little too much for 15mm, I'm not going for that high a quality. The second is good but I'm after feathered edges. However, it'll be useful for when I paint my 15mm sci-fi so thanks for pointing me its way.


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