Monday, 19 May 2008

Magic Wash - Pledge One Go

I have noticed that as a thinner, Magic Wash (Pledge) makes the paint flow beautifully. I also noticed that it leaves a slightly glossy (about semi-gloss I think) finish. Looks real nice on metallics, but probably a bit much on the non-metallics.

So I went searching for flat coat choices to both protect the miniatures and make them look realistic. The popular choice seems to be Testor's Dullcote. As a lacquer there are some concerns about it yellowing over time. Other people recommended PollyScale Flat and something similar from Model Master. The lacquer based sealers use a thinner that can be harsh on acrylic paints, especially silver apparently, which is a bit of a concern.

Unexpectedly my searching turned up a technique based on Future (known as Pledge here). The idea is to mix a matt medium, such as Tamiya X-21 (get it from Toyworld) to make the normally glossy Pledge flatter, leaving a tough, flat finish. Remember that despite all this modelling fun, Pledge is meant to be tough enough to be walked on.

A number of different finishes are possible, just my varying the amount of flat base used:
  • dead-flat: 1 part X-21, 3 parts Pledge
  • flat: 1 part X-21, 10 parts Pledge
  • satin: 1 part X-21, 15 parts Pledge
  • gloss: Pledge (what else :)
I am really impressed with the apparent flexibility of Pledge as well as it cost - available from Coles or Woolies for less than $6 for 500ml. How good is that?

For reference here are some links:
The Complete Future - a great reference. Includes an image of the bottle (centre bottle).
Future Floor Wash - as used by a railroad modeller.

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