Hi All,

I have a WbB FB-1 shell that I masked off for painting.  This started out as a Lehigh Valley factory scheme, but by masking off and painting with some cheap red Wallywart rattle-can spray paint (almost a perfect color match to the FA-1's, by the way), I have turned it into a Rock Island FB-1 to go with my WbB FA-1's.

At this point in time, I have some touch-up paint work to do, as the red has bled under the masking tape in places over the white.  Not a big deal really, as I can go back in and touch up as required.  Pictures enclosed, although they don't show the bleeding quite as well as seeing it in person.  Incidentally, I masked off with blue painter's masking tape as best as I could.

Is there any thing I could have done for a better masking job, where I wouldn't have to go in and do the touch-up work?  Trying to seal the tape down over the rivet and body break lines in plastic moldings was fairly tough to start with.  Thanks in advance for any advice/ideas213214.

Paul  

Ship Rock Island ROCKET FREIGHT

 

2 Rails?  3 Rails?  Doesn't matter, I can't count that high in either case.

I love the smell of fresh-brewed creosote first thing in the morning.

If the government knew how much fun O-gauge railroading was, they'd outlaw it!

Common sense is my second best trait.  Nonsense is my first, of course. 

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For masking over rivets, molded seams, etc. on our plastic shells, use a thin, narrow vinyl striping masking product to create the edge.  Then cover the rest with blue painters' tape.

For plain, straight lines on flat surfaces, Tamiya masking tape works well.

And if you are feeling particularly obsessive with creating a straight edge on a flat surface, apply the tape on a piece of glass and create your own "edge" with a sharp razor blade and steel rule; then remove the tape from the glass and apply it to the model.

EDIT:  Saw the thread's title was directed to "Painting Experts..." which I am not; merely passing along what I've been taught by experts and used more than a few times when I've masked and painted LIONEL model trains.

 

Carl

Two rolls of fine line masking I keep in my arsenal are 3M part nos. 6300 & 6529 .....6529 is usually available at most auto part stores, 6529 is 1/4 inch, 6300 is 1/8 inch.....these are paper tapes. I prefer the paper over the vinyl. It does not stretch like vinyl tape.Vinyl has a tendency to want to return to its natural state, and if you stretch it the wrong way, and your not paying attention, you’ll get an air gap...that’s my personal opinion, and that’s the product that works for me...I paint cars for a living, it’s been my go to tape for fine line projects for cars, models, or whatever ........I can’t argue with results like this........PatFA4BCDED-BF17-4B4B-A51E-C6060911E473

The Water Level Route.......You Can Sleep

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I use blue tape, 3M fineline and Tamiya tapes. Sometimes you have to cut the tape over high details and overlay another layer. Sometimes I use liquid mask as well on complex surfaces. I burnish the tape edge when using the blue tape. It helps keep the edge cleaner.

Michael DeSandro

Troy, AL

harmonyards posted:

Two rolls of fine line masking I keep in my arsenal are 3M part nos. 6300 & 6529 .....6529 is usually available at most auto part stores, 6529 is 1/4 inch, 6300 is 1/8 inch.....these are paper tapes. I prefer the paper over the vinyl. It does not stretch like vinyl tape.Vinyl has a tendency to want to return to its natural state, and if you stretch it the wrong way, and your not paying attention, you’ll get an air gap...that’s my personal opinion, and that’s the product that works for me...I paint cars for a living, it’s been my go to tape for fine line projects for cars, models, or whatever ........I can’t argue with results like this........PatFA4BCDED-BF17-4B4B-A51E-C6060911E473

+1

The green 3M fine line tape is the stuff you want to use. Cover the rest of the model in the blue painters tape. Painter's tape is for painting walls in your home, not clean lines with spray paint.  

Santa Fe, All the Way

Paul, one other tip for painting multiple colors and masked surfaces........don’t try to put heavy coats on at once. Light coats, with time to flash will help prevent bleed throughs caused by overly wet paint. Wet paint will creep and migrate to places you don’t want. Keep gravity handy with your paint tools and products. If you’re painting a second color on a panel, keep it facing in a direction where gravity can be your friend, not your enemy....that helps too....painting is 99% preparation and 1% spraying........hope that helps....Pat

The Water Level Route.......You Can Sleep

I like the Tamaya tapes the best, but sometimes I use blue painter's tape.  I look for a brand that isn't as "rough" in texture.  For sharp lines, I apply it to a piece of glass, then trim  the edge with a sharp blade (like PINGMAN suggests).  Then I burnish the edge, and spray using an air brush, NEVER a rattle can.  I can control the amount of paint much better with an air brush so I don't apply too much to have the paint bleed along the edge.  In the rare event a rattle can paint is a good match, I have been known to release ALL the pressure from the can, then CAREFULLY puncture the bottom to drain the paint into a small bottle for air brush use. 

 

 

Re 'bleeding' under the tape edge... 

Start with a fresh cut edge on the tape that will define your border line.  If you've found a particular tape brand....3M, Tamiya, whatever....works well without doing this step, that's fine.  But, if in doubt, it's a quick, easy first step......using a fresh sharp knife blade, of course!

Secondly, after taking all the care and precautions in applying the tape, many modelers will first spray the masked model with a clear coat.  If any bleeding is going to happen, this clear coat will do so without witness.  Then, when the color coat is subsequently applied, bleed points will have been denied.  Seems like there's a fair number of pro modelers (cars, planes, ships, military, etc.) written up in fine modeling mags who use this precautionary step. 

Just a thought....FWIW, of course.

KD

Thanks for all the replies.  I've been reading them as they come in.  Lots of good ideas.

I started out try to mask with some vinyl electrician's tape.  But it must not have been sticky enough, as the edges lifted up here and there.  So I peeled it off I went back to blue tape.  I cut the blue tape with a straightedge and sharp knife to get a good straight line.  Burnished it down as best as possible with my fingers.  At least it did a better job of staying put than the vinyl tape did.

All I really needed to do was to spray RED, so I had to mask off over existing white.   I had to mask off 3 raised body lines, approximately 1/16" wide and the full length of the shell.  The raised body lines also have molded-in rivets the full length of the shell.  I would imagine a masking challenge even for the pros.

I tried spraying some very light coats of white to seal the tape edges.  I had thought about doing clear as a sealer coat, but didn't want a compatibility problem, as the clear was one brand, and the white and red were another.  At any rate, probably didn't get enough white down, however.  Then I went to the red, and tried spraying very light coats, allowing several minutes between them to tack up.  Maybe I should have allowed more drying time?

Like I originally said, I should be able to touch it up easy enough, and if it isn't 100% perfect, I think it will be good enough to satisfy me (and I'm still kinda' picky about such things, so you know it ain't that bad).  Actually, if I stumble across another FB-1 in the future, I'll most likely buy it and try my luck again.  Maybe I can get perfect results the first time around?  If I follow everyone's tips, my chances should be tremendously improved! 

Don't anyone hesitate to add any more good ideas, either.  I'll keep watching. 

Paul  

Ship Rock Island ROCKET FREIGHT

 

2 Rails?  3 Rails?  Doesn't matter, I can't count that high in either case.

I love the smell of fresh-brewed creosote first thing in the morning.

If the government knew how much fun O-gauge railroading was, they'd outlaw it!

Common sense is my second best trait.  Nonsense is my first, of course. 

My way...not the only way!!!!

I have used many different brands of tape. Tamiya is the best IMHO only. It is made for model work and the very fine details therein. I had decent results with 3M and Shurtape.....but not as good as Tamiya. I keep 3 widths of Tamya on hand AND 3m Blue 1 inch masking. 

I do not cut the tape, I use it right off the roll. I do burnish the tape as I lay it out. This needs to be done while laying it down AND after you have it applied.....right before paint application. I use a combo of my finger nail and a small hardwood stick to burnish the tape. The sticks are sold at WM and craft stores as coffee stir sticks but are more sturdy than coffee sticks. As I say....burnish as you apply and right before paint.  If you burnish it and take your time you should get a line like this. 

PAINT11

After the Tamiya tape is down I back fill with 3M Blue light tack 1 inch masking. Just seal the edges of the 3M do not burnish it.....let it kinda float as much as possible. 

Removing tape is best done while paint is tacky not ddry and pull it back at a 180 degree.....back on itself as such. With care anyone can get a perfect edge when painting. Thanks

CSXDASH4 

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AMCDAVE, please contact me via email in my forum profile.  Need advice on painting "chrome" plated plastic Alco shell. Or, alternatively, provide a useable "how to" here or elsewhere on the forum.

Thanks in advance for your help.

Edit:  Thanks, Dave, for the email.

 

Carl

Yes, your primary problem was in the choice of using blue painters masking tape. not only is it not "fine" enough for model painting, it comes in many different brands, and some are next to worthless. I do prefer to use automotive masking tape, although it is becoming more difficult to find (at least here in N. Califunny). And then, there is your choice of color--Red is notorious for bleeding through, over and under--and I would imagine a rattle can will be difficult to control for a light, fine spray.  Don't get me wrong, I use rattle cans for a lot of applications (typically when painting an AF boiler shell), but when it comes to fine detail work (and I would consider what you were doing as "detail work") it is hard to beat an airbrush.

S'incerely,

David "two rails" Dewey

I have no experience masking rail cars to paint multiple colors. However, I have been painting architectural models for over 30 years. The best tape that I know of and our standard go-to is Nichiban medical tape. We rarely mask to a line, rather we cover the line to be masked to and then cut the tape with a sharp hobby blade. Any broken tip will ever so slightly cause a rough cut knife line/tear rather than a clean cut. Listening to/feeling the clean cut through the body of the blade holder is key to a quality job. If the tip goes "click", out it comes and a new blade goes in. We buy Excel Hobby Blades #11's at 1,000 at a time.

If you are masking a finicky surface, make sure the tape is burnished down well. On a rail car shell a piece of 100 x 250 styrene with the edges slightly eased may be a good tool to use. Then consider a light spray of the color that you masked to create a seal at the mask line. Then apply your next color. 

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