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Had a go at painting my masks..


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Thought I might post a group pic of my masks that I recently had a go at painting..

You've got a Bauer 960xpm with a Celtic theme (I'm Welsh).

In the middle a Pro's Choice with a reaper theme (kind of inspired by Terry Pratchett's Death character).

Lastly a Sportmask Pro 3i. Idea behind this one was for my kids.. my wife is from Hong Kong so they are half Chinese.. my son's Chinese zodiac is a water dragon and my daughter is a fire horse so thought I'd try and put them on..

Need much more practice but can't justify getting any more masks.. I suspect at some point I'll just end up stripping these back and going again when I get bored of them!

IMG_20220325_100211.jpg

IMG20220325095711.jpg

IMG_20220325_101441.jpg

IMG_20220325_101429.jpg

IMG_20220325_095933.jpg

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1 hour ago, seagoal said:

These look really good. You clearly have some skill.  How much experience painting did you have before these?

Not a huge amount... playing around with miniatures mainly.. there was a fair amount of trial and error (rather too much error) on these, and clear coating them at the end is awkward.

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2 minutes ago, Chenner29 said:

Nice work! These look a lot cleaner than some masks I have seen from painters who charge

Agreed.  The Bauer in particular looks great, to me. It's got the most clarity and sharpness and the back plate looks really good.

 

10 minutes ago, Llew81 said:

Not a huge amount... playing around with miniatures mainly.. there was a fair amount of trial and error (rather too much error) on these, and clear coating them at the end is awkward.

I'm impressed.

What's so awkward about clear coating?  I've had several conversations with a few different airbrush artists over the years and it's a consistent theme that clear coating is different, awkward, tricky, difficult, etc.  Care to elaborate?

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2 minutes ago, seagoal said:

What's so awkward about clear coating?  I've had several conversations with a few different airbrush artists over the years and it's a consistent theme that clear coating is different, awkward, tricky, difficult, etc.  Care to elaborate?

A few things (I'm no expert either). From what I've read about doing these masks, it seems the best way to finish them and protect the paint is with a 2k clear coat. To start with and probably most important, this stuff is pretty toxic and all-round just horrible. Ideally you need a properly ventilated booth to use it, along with a proper mask and protective clothing. It's one of those things that manages to get everywhere, I have mask, safety goggles, paper suit and gloves and have to spray outside or in my garden shed (this means I can't help but get little bits of crap in the finish, but you only really notice them close up).

The 2k is temperature sensitive and won't harden properly if temp is too low. Spraying it itself is tricky to get right. Seems that best practice is to do a couple of light 'tac' coats to help the later wet coats adhere to the surface. When doing the wet coats its a real balance between getting enough on but not so much to cause runs in it. It then takes a number of coats.

As well as runs you also get 'orange peel' effect. This is where the surface in some areas can go a bit odd. It gets a sort of texture to it that looks very much like the surface of orange peel, a bit dimply I guess. You need then to let it cure for at least 48hrs before it is sufficiently cured. You are then supposed to sand it slightly and buff it. You can sand and buff out some minor runs and orange peel effect. I tried sanding once but made a real pigs ear of it and no matter how I tried I couldn't really buff out the marks from the sanding, so now I just leave it. I do everything by hand, so I guess it may be easier to sand and buff with one of those rotary machine thingies but I don't have one.

All in all it's just a real ball-ache, and something that can ruin an otherwise nice paint job. It can also do funny things to the paint you spray it onto as well, although some of these are good like with 'candy' colours and metal flakes.

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21 minutes ago, seagoal said:

Agreed.  The Bauer in particular looks great, to me. It's got the most clarity and sharpness and the back plate looks really good.

I know what you mean, funnily enough though it is the worst fitting of them all... also the others are much harder to get a decent picture of as the reflection from the clear coat just obliterates most of the detail.

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37 minutes ago, Llew81 said:

A few things (I'm no expert either). From what I've read about doing these masks, it seems the best way to finish them and protect the paint is with a 2k clear coat. To start with and probably most important, this stuff is pretty toxic and all-round just horrible. Ideally you need a properly ventilated booth to use it, along with a proper mask and protective clothing. It's one of those things that manages to get everywhere, I have mask, safety goggles, paper suit and gloves and have to spray outside or in my garden shed (this means I can't help but get little bits of crap in the finish, but you only really notice them close up).

The 2k is temperature sensitive and won't harden properly if temp is too low. Spraying it itself is tricky to get right. Seems that best practice is to do a couple of light 'tac' coats to help the later wet coats adhere to the surface. When doing the wet coats its a real balance between getting enough on but not so much to cause runs in it. It then takes a number of coats.

As well as runs you also get 'orange peel' effect. This is where the surface in some areas can go a bit odd. It gets a sort of texture to it that looks very much like the surface of orange peel, a bit dimply I guess. You need then to let it cure for at least 48hrs before it is sufficiently cured. You are then supposed to sand it slightly and buff it. You can sand and buff out some minor runs and orange peel effect. I tried sanding once but made a real pigs ear of it and no matter how I tried I couldn't really buff out the marks from the sanding, so now I just leave it. I do everything by hand, so I guess it may be easier to sand and buff with one of those rotary machine thingies but I don't have one.

All in all it's just a real ball-ache, and something that can ruin an otherwise nice paint job. It can also do funny things to the paint you spray it onto as well, although some of these are good like with 'candy' colours and metal flakes.

That's really good elaboration, thank you.  Sounds very aligned with what I've gathered.  I had one artist (who I didn't work with) tell me he could paint a helmet for me but not clear coat it.  I thought that was confusing. But it sounds like there are more variables in play with the clear than with the regular paint.

 

35 minutes ago, Llew81 said:

I know what you mean, funnily enough though it is the worst fitting of them all... also the others are much harder to get a decent picture of as the reflection from the clear coat just obliterates most of the detail.

The Bauer is simpler, I guess.  The other two have more color swirls and color areas that are not distinct objects or things, if you get me, so they look less distinct than the Bauer.  I like all 3 though, for sure (and I'm very biased towards the overall shape and cages of the 2 others over the Bauer).  Good Markstrom vibes on the left side of the Sportmask :)

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The artwork looks awesome. What did you actually end up using for clear?

I've never really become proficient at spraying clear well all in one day, always end up with issues you've mentioned and wet sanding/buffing has not gone well for me either. One thing I've had good success with is doing a couple light coat and then 2 or 3 heavy coats. I try to avoid imperfections, but something always shows up. I'll let that sit for 4 or 5 days and then knock that clear down until it is smooth, starting with 320 grit on the bigger imperfections and working to 800 grit. Then I'll hit it with another round of clear, one light coat and a couple wet coats that are still on the light side. This usually works out pretty good with minimal imperfections, but worse case scenario there might just be a few small spots, which will make the cut and buff easier if you even want to bother. I usually just leave it at that point though. This is all using urethane clear. I have top coated the sanded down urethane with matte lacquer as well with good results.

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7 hours ago, Nova said:

What did you actually end up using for clear?

I used this one https://www.graff-city.com/spray-cans-c128/spraymax-2k-clear-coat-gloss-400ml-p4243

I did 2 light tac coats, waiting about 10mins between each.. I then did something like 4-5 much thicker wet coats, waiting prob around 15mins between each one. 1 can will do 1 lid like this. There is orange peel in the finish, but I didn't sand them back as by hand I simply have never been able to get the shiny gloss finish back. You only really notice the orange peel up close and the rest of the finish is really nice and glassy without sanding back and buffing, so I figured I'd just leave it.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 3/25/2022 at 6:21 AM, Llew81 said:

Thought I might post a group pic of my masks that I recently had a go at painting..

You've got a Bauer 960xpm with a Celtic theme (I'm Welsh).

In the middle a Pro's Choice with a reaper theme (kind of inspired by Terry Pratchett's Death character).

Lastly a Sportmask Pro 3i. Idea behind this one was for my kids.. my wife is from Hong Kong so they are half Chinese.. my son's Chinese zodiac is a water dragon and my daughter is a fire horse so thought I'd try and put them on..

Need much more practice but can't justify getting any more masks.. I suspect at some point I'll just end up stripping these back and going again when I get bored of them!

IMG_20220325_100211.jpg

IMG20220325095711.jpg

IMG_20220325_101441.jpg

IMG_20220325_101429.jpg

IMG_20220325_095933.jpg

You should sell these. One day, you might become the next DaveArt and have NHLers wearing masks with your paint jobs. 

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