Subscribe
  1. Roninson's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    148
    Jul 27, 2011, 1:55 AM - Helmet masking techniques? #1

    I shot TF a mail about this, but haven't heard back from him yet (I imagine he's extremely busy), so a toss of the question out to everyone else...

    I've recently embarked on painting up my own FP Prem helmet and have been following the "One last wafer thin ESB paint job..." thread by Terminal Fettler. I've been struggling with masking detail, which immediately signaled that something's amiss. Here's the steps I've been taking:
    • Print out sections from Count Dookie's templates
    • Transfer the template to the helmet via tracing with graphite paper
    • Masking the template outline with either Windsor & Newton Art Masking Fluid and/or Masquepen
    • Airbrushing the masked section
    The problem comes up with the masking material. The fluid I'm using is either too runny to retain the fine detail required (the Masquepen) or dries too fast (Windsor & Newton). With the W&N fluid, the initial viscosity is pretty good, but it builds up on the brush very quickly, making it nearly impossible to paint in the fine detail of the template. Additionally, it dries so quickly that by the time I've cleaned the brush of excess fluid, adding new fluid to the necessary area tends to lift up the already dried mask.

    Has anyone discovered these problems and figure out a way around them? Am I using the wrong masking fluid? It seems a number of folks have had success with the W & N masking fluid, so I don't think that's the issue. Part of it might be the environment I'm in -- the garage I'm working in can get fairly hot.

    Any advice or shared experiences would be appreciated.
  2. RafalFett's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    2,697
    Jul 27, 2011, 2:16 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #2

    Some used mustard and even toothpaste to mask the scratches on their paints.
  3. Jayvee's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    657
    Jul 27, 2011, 3:03 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #3

    I personally find I cant go past Humbrol Maskol. Dries well but not too quick, is purple so you see what you are doing, and just overall, i'v had very few problems with it (other than getting a few spills on my clothes - any tips for removing those gang?) The other thing you may want to try for reallt fine areas, is toothpicks - firmer than a brush, and when you get a build up, throw it out and use a new one. worked really well for some fine scatches and damage areas. Time consuming, but take a bit of extra time, and could be the differrence between a good job and a great one. Peace
  4. High Speed Low Drag Fett 4 Real's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    5,670
    Jul 27, 2011, 6:54 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #4

    I think the gumming up issue u have is with all liquid latex products u just have to clean ur brush with ur fingers every so often, peel the **** off....thats how i get around it
  5. Luis's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    263
    Jul 27, 2011, 7:46 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #5

    Quote Jayvee said: View Post
    I personally find I cant go past Humbrol Maskol. Dries well but not too quick, is purple so you see what you are doing, and just overall, i'v had very few problems with it (other than getting a few spills on my clothes - any tips for removing those gang?) The other thing you may want to try for reallt fine areas, is toothpicks - firmer than a brush, and when you get a build up, throw it out and use a new one. worked really well for some fine scatches and damage areas. Time consuming, but take a bit of extra time, and could be the differrence between a good job and a great one. Peace
    I agree, I use Mr. Masking Sol neo by Gunze. It's color aqua blue. Never had the problems I get with W&N. Toothpicks are the best!
  6. High Speed Low Drag Fett 4 Real's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2010
    Posts
    5,670
    Jul 27, 2011, 8:52 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #6

    I use graphix its white, and add blue watercolor
  7. Jayvee's Avatar
    Member Since
    Sep 2010
    Posts
    657
    Jul 27, 2011, 10:48 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #7

    As I say, im sure there are many good masking options, I tried one brand that was really average, then tried humbrol maskol, and have found it brilliant. If im not mistaken, if you ate using the 'one last wafer thin..' thread as reference, im sure TF mentions somewhere in thete that humbrol maskol is his masking fluid of choice too.. Excellent if you are using humbrol enamels as he has in that paintup too. Fett4real has good experience too, so whatever he's suggesting is bound to have you on the right track also. And good advice from him to simply remove any buildup on brushes with your fingers - easiest way. Throw in some toothpicks or something similar, and youre on your way brother! :-)
  8. superjedi's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jul 2003
    Posts
    4,383
    Jul 27, 2011, 11:04 AM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #8

    I'm a Winsor & Newton fan. It does dry quickly, but it's the best product I've tried to date.
    For those very small areas, you can try toothpicks as others have mentioned, or you could try something called microbrushes. They are sold in packs of ten for about 3 dollars and they're like tiny Q-tips. Just a tiny puff of fibers on a plastic handle.
    I've had good results with those.
    For the issue with the newly applied fluid pulling up the dried fluid, it just takes some practice blending the wet fluid into the dry area. I try to put a bit of fluid a small distance away from the dry fluid and then gently "feathering" them together.
  9. clonecollector's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    1,591
    Jul 27, 2011, 1:20 PM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #9

    I've used many microbrushes, toothpicks, paperclips, even needlepoints. Whatever gives you the outcome you want. I also dabbed on the masking fluid little by little until I filled in the area I wanted. I "brushed" the fluid on my very first helmet I did and the effect didn't look realistic at all.
  10. stormtrooperguy's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    5,039
    Jul 27, 2011, 1:27 PM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #10

    Gumming up the brushes is normal in my experience. I clean them often, and have a lot of brushes on hand. When one stops behaving, I just toss it and move to the next one.
  11. Roninson's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 2009
    Posts
    148
    Jul 27, 2011, 1:36 PM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #11

    Awesome tips and advice, brothers. I'll try using both toothpicks and if I'm able to locate them, microbrushes as well. It's possible I was rushing the application, but with the W&N drying so quickly, there wasn't alot of time to play with. To that, does anyone know where to purchase Maskol in the States? It looks like its sold mainly in the UK & Europe and the place I purchased Humbrol paints in the States from doesn't carry it.

    Thanks again for all of your help!
  12. jmorrone's Avatar
    Member Since
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    148
    Jul 27, 2011, 2:11 PM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #12

    Quote Fett 4 Real said: View Post
    I use graphix its white, and add blue watercolor
    Genius! I love the masking fluid I use but I have trouble seeing it. So simple, yet so perfect!
  13. saint_nasty's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 2006
    Posts
    2,874
    Jul 27, 2011, 2:45 PM - Re: Helmet masking techniques? #13

    i'm a huge fan of using toothpaste and a 00 brush. toothpaste is great, you can see where you put it, it stays where you put it, and so long as you let your paint really dry and use a mr. clean magic eraser sponge to wipe it off with hot water, it comes off super clean too.

    you can pick up an 00 brush at any modeling/hobby store. most comic book stores that sell warhammer or warmachine will be able to hook you up.

Similar Threads

  1. Helmet Weathering Techniques?
    By fettzilla in forum Boba Fett Helmet
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: Oct 1, 2010, 5:01 PM
  2. Masking Helmet Sections
    By Jedi-Bob in forum Boba Fett Helmet
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: May 31, 2004, 6:13 PM
  3. Help: Reinforcing Techniques
    By coolv1rus in forum Boba Fett Helmet
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: Apr 21, 2003, 11:57 PM
  4. Masking/Curing Process for Painting the Helmet??
    By batninja in forum Boba Fett Helmet
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: Feb 28, 2003, 11:08 AM
  5. General helmet painting-masking, priming, weathering, ect...
    By Migrate from As You Wish in forum Boba Fett Helmet
    Replies: 76
    Last Post: Aug 29, 2002, 9:43 PM