Sometimes there are painting masks very difficult to realize, especially when they have two or more colors and an intricate shape. To achieve this masks the best way is to split them into two or more layers.
For a perfect allignment we need to add some centering signs. It’s not a hard work to do but it isn’t easy to explain with words. For this reason we decided to make this tutorial to help our customers and all the modelers.
The example we show is part of a custom mask to realize a famous P-51 Mustang. This is what we want to achieve.
WHAT WE NEED
- Heroes Models custom mask
- Post it
- Colors: Tamiya XF-7 Red, and XF-1 Black
- Thinner (Laquer thinner Tamiya)
Just a quick precisation before starting to read. We used Harder & Steenbeck Evolution airbrush with 0.2 needle. All the colors were thinned (80% thinner 20% color) and pressure range was 0.5-0.8 bar.
We used laquer thinner with Tamiya colors because it improves the coverage of the colors. I always use tamiya colors from XF series (matt) because they are the best colors to use with masks.
Some colors, like Vallejo or other vynil based colors, easily attach to the borders of the mask and this could create problems when you remove the mask.
- We attach the first layer of the mask on the model, in this case the red one. You must start to use first the layers from the color you see underneath and then proceed with the colors above in order.
- I usually use the “post it” to prevent overspray near the mask. “Post it” are easy to use, repositionable and with low adhesivity. We could be sure that they don’t move the mask or peel the base color. It’s very important with layered masks to maintain the position for the successive allignment. Now we can spray the first color.
- Before removing the first layer we must place the two centering signs. We put, with a tweezer, the two circles remained on the support in their own holes on the edge of the mask. Pay attention to these signs when you remove the first layer from support, don’t lose them.
- Now we can remove the first layer and see the result. In the photo the two centering signs in place are clearly visible. Pay attention not to move them.
- Before positioning the second layer it’s advisable to remove the unused parts of the mask. When we cut these very difficult shapes it’s easy that some parts could not remain on the support. After this operation we must take in place the unlinked parts of the mask before removing them from the support. I used two pieces of vynil because they have low adehesion and they don’t damage the mask.
- Now we must center the second layer. We just match the two signs remained on the model with the holes in the second layer. It’s not easy to do this at the first time but the mask could be repositioned a lot of times without any problem.
- The last thing to do is to spray the black color.
The final result
This is the final result. It’s a long work that requires a little bit of care but the result repays all the time we spent.