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The Peter Buckingham Column Part 10






I thought it would be pertinent to mention a few of the items I have found useful since becoming addicted to plastic modelling about 18 months ago and which made model making seem that much easier.



First and foremost, one of the best things I have come across is Tamiya Extra Thin Cement, but which due to stupid EU commissioners and their equally ridiculous laws, is not available across the counter in the UK. It does exactly what it says on the tin, but in this case, bottle. It has a very fine brush applicator and works superbly by capillary action into all the nooks and crannies of the most complicated joints. Having said that, Revell Contacta Professional cement works equally well if used with a very fine brush as does Ambroid Proweld.


For a matt finish, I have tried Klear plus Tamiya Flat Base which is favoured by many modellers on a 3 parts Klear to one part Flat Base ratio but I’m afraid I am not a great Klear fan. It must be me, because most modellers swear by it, but I can never seem to get the same results twice. What I have found to be constantly good every time, is Gunze Sangyo Matt Clear, diluted with water. It sprays on really well and dries to whatever matt finish you desire with different water ratios. I was told the best thing to dilute Gunze Sangyo was Isopropyl Alcohol which is available from certain chemists, but I have found tap water to be the best for me. As with most things modelling, it is whatever floats your particular boat.



For seat belts, I am a great fan of those produced by Radu Brinzan in Ireland and, I believe, shortly to be stocked by Graham. They only come in 1/32 sizes and are available for WWII German and American aircraft. The finished seat belts, which can take an evening to put together, look so realistic coming in authentically coloured lightweight paper/card material with PE buckles and they really enhance all the hard work you can put into detailing a cockpit. Radu, amongst lots of other goodies, also produces a PE bending tool which is actually made in PE format and you put it together yourself in kit form! I use nothing else now. Punch in Radu Brinzan on Google and look at his website.



As for paints, although I like the Tamiya range of acrylics, it so nice to go to the White Ensign Models range of enamels to get the correct colours for World War II aircraft. Not only that, they spray so beautifully and although you have to wait at least 24 hours before any other activity on that part of the model, I feel the wait is worth it. I apply the coats very thinly and heavily diluted with Humbrol enamel thinners. Xtracolour and others also supply designated WWII colours in both acrylica and enamel, but I prefer the application of WEM paints - again another personal choice. I do have a problem with colours though, as I am quite colour blind in certain ranges of colour which certainly doesn’t help.


Those of you who have read my rantings over the past few weeks will know that I attended an excellent Airbrush Company one day airbrushing course using Iwata products. I loved the trigger action TR1 but I defied all logic and kept using my Badger 200 series single action brush as used and demonstrated to me at Hannants, by Ted Taylor. I felt that I wasn’t ready for a double action at that time.



However, since completing my first 1/32 kit, the Fw190 as seen in these articles, I decided to give the Iwata TR1 a try and purchased one last April, 2009. I have been using it ever since and am delighted with it’s versatility although I did have a problem with paint leaking from the brush body caused by a faulty ‘o’ ring. A rarity, evidently, which was rectified, free of charge under warranty and in record turnaround time by The Airbrush Company - posted to them on a Wednesday afternoon and back with me on the Friday morning! Pretty good service these days I’d say!


Graham tells me that he is working on stocking Iwata airbrushes. Good news indeed. Watch this space.


More next week.


Peter Buckingham.

Part 11