Help with getting started with painting

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Hi, The new guy again here, I'm afraid I'm posting to many threads, but I have so much questions and so few people to ask them to.
I opened the box, And I see before me the complex plans, and the many many parts, now my question is.. Where do I begin?

  • Do I check all sprues, go over each small part, find the color in the manual and paint it.. do this for a few days?
  • Do I only paint the parts I'm going to need early on in the plans and wait with the others?
 

Gary MacKenzie

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Hi, The new guy again here, I'm afraid I'm posting to many threads, but I have so much questions and so few people to ask them to.
I opened the box, And I see before me the complex plans, and the many many parts, now my question is.. Where do I begin?

  • Do I check all sprues, go over each small part, find the color in the manual and paint it.. do this for a few days?
  • Do I only paint the parts I'm going to need early on in the plans and wait with the others?

Whichever you choose , will be wrong for that part.
I painted a lot of bits on kit i am finishing now, on sprue , because i thought it would help , it didn't.
I norrmally do subassemblies and paint only if i cant get access once they are combined.
 
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Whichever you choose , will be wrong for that part.
I painted a lot of bits on kit i am finishing now, on sprue , because i thought it would help , it didn't.
I norrmally do subassemblies and paint only if i cant get access once they are combined.
So the answer would be to check out if the part will be accessible after glueing, if not paint it first? But I read that for very small parts it's best to paint on the sprue either way?
 

Tim Marlow

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I work in sub assemblies as well.....it’s quicker and more effective in the long run. Handling can also wear off paint from pre-painted parts when you assemble them..
 

Jakko

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Generally speaking, I put things together as far as possible, only keeping things loose that will get in the way of painting later on. For a tank kit, for example, that usually means leaving the wheels, tracks and side skirts (if the tank has them) off but putting pretty much everything else together. It’s a matter of experience, mostly: look at the parts and the half-built model, and try to decide whether you will still be able to reach things with a paintbrush or not if you put the next part on. If you think you will be able to get the paint everywhere it needs to go, add the part; otherwise, figure out what you can build and what you need to leave separate. Building in subassemblies, as mentioned, is then usually your best bet.

Obviously, there are exceptions: with an aircraft, for example, you would first build and paint the cockpit, put it into the fuselage, and only then build the rest of the plane and paint that.
 

Jim R

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Hi Miguel
Totally agree with Jakko. I try to build as much as possible before painting. Planning ahead is the key
Jim
 

zuludog

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Here is a brief description of my procedure -

I paint these while they are still attached to the sprue - small parts; any internal parts, especially for the cockpit; internal surfaces like wheel wells.
I just give them one coat as a primer/undercoat/base coat. This will be the appropriate interior colour or a general pale - medium grey. But I don't paint large areas of the model that can be done after assembly

I usually start with the cockpit, then do the other stages. As I remove parts from the sprue I prepare them by removing moulding lines & sprue attachment points. This will remove some of the paint, but there will be enough left as a very basic primer. This first coat of paint makes it easier to see where I have sanded, and if the part is OK to use
Remember to remove paint from any surfaces that will be glued

Then I start the assembly, painting properly as I go. You just have to learn from experience which parts will need painting early on, and which can be left till the sub assembly is complete.

Where parts have been glued, filled, and sanded I paint the joints with pale grey as this shows if the filling is good. Then lightly sand the paint, ready for the final painting

Continue till the model is complete then do the main painting

Search YouTube for 'Making Plastic Model Kits'. There are lots of videos, both general and for particular models. You will see how other modellers do their work

The International Plastic Modellers Society is a large association for people who make plastic kits. They are friendly and helpful. I suggest you contact them, and they will answer most of your questions.
In Belgium they are - www.ipms.be

Have you actually made anything yet? Buy a cheap kit and get started. You can read, & watch for a long time, but the best way to learn is simply to do it! But meeting and talking to other modellers is very good as well!
 
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Jakko

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Have you actually made anything yet? Buy a cheap kit and get started. You can read, & watch for a long time, but the best way to learn is simply to do it!
Agreed 100%. You learn far more from doing something than from reading about it or watching other people do it, but don’t aim too high. You will not produce a show-winning model on your first go, and you’ll probably not even produce a model that looks as good as you had in mind on your first go — in fact, I would recommend against comparing yourself to the efforts of other people, as that mainly produces disappointment. However, regardless of how well it comes out, you will have the satisfaction of having something in your hands that you made yourself.
 

zuludog

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As I've posted before on this forum - model making is like sex - the only way to learn it is to do it!
 
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Here is a brief description of my procedure -

I paint these while they are still attached to the sprue - small parts; any internal parts, especially for the cockpit; internal surfaces like wheel wells.
I just give them one coat as a primer/undercoat/base coat. This will be the appropriate interior colour or a general pale - medium grey. But I don't paint large areas of the model that can be done after assembly

I usually start with the cockpit, then do the other stages. As I remove parts from the sprue I prepare them by removing moulding lines & sprue attachment points. This will remove some of the paint, but there will be enough left as a very basic primer. This first coat of paint makes it easier to see where I have sanded, and if the part is OK to use
Remember to remove paint from any surfaces that will be glued

Then I start the assembly, painting properly as I go. You just have to learn from experience which parts will need painting early on, and which can be left till the sub assembly is complete.

Where parts have been glued, filled, and sanded I paint the joints with pale grey as this shows if the filling is good. Then lightly sand the paint, ready for the final painting

Continue till the model is complete then do the main painting

Search YouTube for 'Making Plastic Model Kits'. There are lots of videos, both general and for particular models. You will see how other modellers do their work

The International Plastic Modellers Society is a large association for people who make plastic kits. They are friendly and helpful. I suggest you contact them, and they will answer most of your questions.
In Belgium they are - www.ipms.be

Have you actually made anything yet? Buy a cheap kit and get started. You can read, & watch for a long time, but the best way to learn is simply to do it! But meeting and talking to other modellers is very good as well!
This is very good advice! Thank you, I'm starting tomorrow, after visiting a lot of shops to get all the materials I need, I'm afraid to destroy the whole thing, but like I read a lot of times here, it's just a matter of doing,"Fail Fast"
 

Bortig the Viking

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Hi, I'm just getting back into modelling now I've got my early retirement, I was actually a child model in the States when a kid in catalogues etc but now in the UK, was born here of Norwegian/ Irish/US parents, commonly called a mutt or a new one I heard is a hybrid, anyway drifting off trend here, as others have said don't compare yourself to any other modellers they might have more experience but who knows you might get yourself better than them. That's the trick just do it and see how it goes everyone started at the bottom, one thing I always remember from my old man, look and plan twice make once, then you shouldn't go to wrong.
Another tip I can give is don't look in a store or website and go at it like a kid in the candy store, build up slowly as and when you need it that way you can build up your knowledge at a pace good for you.
Well that's enough preaching, just have fun making whatever takes your fancy and start simple.
 
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