Preparation of parts | I started building the model as always by cutting out all parts from the sprues. As in the case of Italeri, most of the elements had seams of the molds. It took me several hours to remove this imperfections, divided into a few evening sessions. This is a necessary process.
In addition, the model was pitted after casting. I filled out these defects with a white Tamiya putty.
I always make dry fittings to see if everything designed by the manufacturer fits perfectly with each other. I spent the most time to matching the back of the body to the chassis and adjusting the mask and its side blinds. There was a lot of sanding here to synchronize all moving surfaces.
Due to the fact that I like to apply a lot of clear varnish on edges and panel ends (so as not to wipe the undercoat during polishing), I had to enlarge some gaps, so that later the panel after painting is greater than the hole that it is to cover.
At this stage, I also decided to cut off most of the original heads of bolts, nuts, rivets, etc., because the stock ones, although quite well reproduced, they were too poorly emphasized for me. I bought several sets of third party bolts, nuts, rivets heads in several sizes from Meng.
I made the necessary measurements and glued new bolts and pasted the characteristic kedra in the connection of body and fuel tank cover. A lot of work also required to mount the front windows, which were made of bent PE sheets.
Painting with primer | Due to the large number of parts that must be painted separately, I had to drill small holes in 'smart' places, thanks to which I could fix the elements to a toothpick and freely operate when painting. I mounted larger parts using Patafix.
For painting I used the MR Surfacer 1200 primer from Gunze. This product perfectly fills all micro scratches made during sanding. It must be thinned - I used a leveling Thinner for this from Wamod. I painted twice. The first contact layer, thin and not very wet. When the elements dried slightly, I applied a second - wet layer of primer.
The next day, when everything was dry, I made an inspection in terms of possible imperfections. There were several places on the body elements, where scratches after sanding became visible. I had to make the necessary mortars and corrections.
At the end of work with the primer, using the Tamiya abrasive sponges (2000/5000) I polished parts of the body from minor inclusions, dust, etc. The parts must be ultra smooth, otherwise a gloss surface would not be achieved.
Engine painting | Looking through photos of the original Alfa engine you can see many shades of aluminum - from dark to very light and shiny, where it was polished. Due to the fact that I was building a museum version, all elements had to be in good condition - without stains, raids, etc. On the other hand, they could not look like a cast straight from the factory.
The first base color was AK Extreme Metal Gun Metal. It is not as dark as it might seem. It is ideal for emphasizing dark parts, to corners, etc. Then I made the color modulation using 3 colors alternately - AK Extreme Metal Aluminum, White Alu and Matt Alu.
The valve covers and the gearbox flap have been painted with AK Extreme Metal Polished Aluminum paint. After the paints have dried, as a wash I used the black Panel Liner from Tamiya to emphasize the differences in textures and cambers. At the end I rubbed the edges with the bright enamel of Tamiya in the color of Matt Aluminum, to emphasize the brightness of the edge.
Base color painting | To get the right color - Italian Bordo, I mixed three C series paints - Mr.Color Wine Red + Mr.Color Russet + Mr.Color Red. I don't know the proportions, because I mixed and mixed over and over, changing the proportions of the paints, until I got a satisfactory result. I could probably use a ready-made color mix, e.g. from the Zero Paint Authentic series, but I had such paints in the workshop, so I took the opportunity to create my own Italian Bordo recipe.
Painting with Mr.Color paints from the C series is quite pleasant. You can't ruin anything here. Unlike paints such as Zero Paints, Mr.Color C series does not eat primer or plastic. It can be applied with wet layers. And it dries very quickly. Unfortunately, reds and derivatives cover very poorly. Sometimes they have to be applied on a white base. You need to spray several layers, remembering that all elements should be painted with the same amount of paint, otherwise we will have shades that are difficult to lose later on.
1/12 scale is quite a big piece of plastic. An airbrush with a 0.5 mm nozzle is essential here. I painted using the Procon Boy LWA Trigger 0.5 mm aero. In the end, quite a nice, smooth varnish coating came out. There were a few inclusions, but despite the great cleanliness during painting, something will always "fall in". When removing imperfections, I used water abrasive cloths from 3000 to 6000 grit.
Painting with a clear coat | The best gloss effect I get with using 2K car paints. Modeling clear varnishes are good, they can give satisfying results, but unfortunately they are not hard enough after drying (even after two weeks), which means that further polishing is not effective. In addition, modeling varnishes can go yellow over the years, and getting a glossy surface is sometimes difficult and complicated. I liked 2K Varnishes for their quality. If we get the hang of it, we are able to paint the model, basically with no orange peel effect.
The clear varnish I used is my own product - 2K Diamonds Crystal Gloss, which was created especially for modeling purposes. It will be available for sale soon. For painting, I used a Procon Boy Trigger airbrush with a 0.5 mm nozzle.
I paint in 3 coats. The first coat - a contact one, which gives adhesion. I paint thin at low pressure, approx. 15 psi.
I spray the second one after about 15 minutes - it is wet and I apply it thicker. I let the varnish spread nicely over the surface, controlling it so that it does not flow and does not stain.
The third coat - the last one, in the next time interval of 15-20 minutes is the final layer. Also wet, but not as thick as the second coat.
This is how I painted the necessary elements. I left all the elements to dry under cover, so as not to catch air inclusions. It is important to remember that on the edges and around the rivets and other types of protruding elements, the surface of the varnish should be thicker, because during a polishing we can quickly wipe it to the primer.
Polishing | I like when the clear coat on my models is perfect and free from imperfections. To do this correction and polishing are necessary. I don't have a spray booth good enough, so some dirt can stick to it when painting. To remove inclusions on the paintwork, I used Kovax abrasive strips and Gunze polishing cloths with high grits of 3000/6000. I sanded wet. The hardest part was around the rivets on the cab and on the hood pins of engine cover.
When it was smooth enough, I could move on to polishing. Using a mini grinder and sponge pads, I polished the entire car body using the full spectrum of polishing pastes, from automotive and more abrasive ones, to dedicated modeling pastes and wax from Tamiya.
Author | Jarek Rydzu Rydzyński
Next workbench | Volvo 740 Turbo