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Primer (acrylic) yes or no.

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On exterior surfaces, absolutely every time. No exceptions. A lot of people will tell you it's not really necessary, and there are probably circumstances where this is true, but switching to using a primer under acrylics was the single best thing I ever did for my finishes. I generally skip it for interior surfaces unless I've used a lot of mixed media.

 

Kev

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I'm with Kevin on this one...I've used acrylics for as long as I can remember but a coat of primer is shot without exception as well.First off it shows any flaws you want to repair prior to painting but mainly it gives the paint something to hold on to.Just my two cents worth...

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Guest

I agree with both posts. All I use is acrylics. And I swear by Tamiya fine white primer.....Harv

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I use Tamiya acrylics exclusively, and never use primer.

Show off !!!.............Harv (LOL)

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Show off !!!.............Harv (LOL)

 

:evil_laugh: I tried using primer once (tamiya grey) and had such a terrible experience with it I vowed never again. Never had a case of paint lifting off from masking either, must be something in the water here! :hmmm:

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I'm 50/50 on this, I have never used a primer anywhere until recently when I started using Alclad Grey, but even then only on the exterior as the Alclad primer seems to dry pebbly for me & needs very gentle sanding down so I've stopped using it now.

I use Tamiya acrylics exclusivley for painting.

 

I tend to shoot a thin layer of normal Tamiya sky grey (XF66?????) to show up any imperfections & then paint straight on top of that but I know thats not really a primer.

 

Might have to try the Tamya fine white primer though & see what results I get - what is the advantage of this over me putting on a thin layer of normal acrylic sky grey to act as a primer as I do now?

 

Martin.

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Might have to try the Tamya fine white primer though & see what results I get - what is the advantage of this over me putting on a thin layer of normal acrylic sky grey to act as a primer as I do now?

 

While I'm primarily a Mr Surfacer user, the principles are the same (as are the products, largely). The benefit of a lacquer-based primer like Mr Surfacer or the Tamiya equivalents is that they bite into the plastic in a way that comparatively fragile acrylics never will. Because plastic is an oil-based medium, acrylic paints just don't bond as well to it as other types of paints. However, they will bond perfectly well to dedicated primers, which, while smooth, provide just enough 'tooth' for the acrylics to latch on to. Additionally, these dedicated primers act as microfillers, filling in small imperfections such as sanding scratches and the like (or allowing you to spot them and deal with them when they don't). They manage to do this and not obscure even the finest detail by shrinking slightly as they dry, giving a shrink-wrap effect that defies belief until you see it, and settles into any detail deeper than a sanding scratch.

 

The secret though is to use the finest grades - for Mr Surfacer, that's 1200, either in a jar or out of a rattle can. The Tamiya grey primer is, from my experience, equivalent to Mr Surfacer 500, which is meant for heavy surface rehabilitation, rather than as a 'before you paint' primer. You can get away with it, but you'd have to sand and polish it back to get the kind of finish 1200 gives you out of the jar/can.

 

As I said, and Frank ably proves, many people never use primers with their acrylic paints. I used to neither. But now I never don't. And really, with the kind of plastic bashing I do, I couldn't get away without a primer coat whatever paint medium I used for the colour coats.

 

Kev

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Guest Dekenba

I find cheap car primer does just a good a job.

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Always, always and always for me I'm afraid. Mr Surfacer for most applications inside and out. Usually 500 well thinned with lacquer thinners and brushed on for interior or detail bits. I go way thin, almost tinted thinners than a full coat of primer. Gives the acrylic something with bite onto and doesn't cover any details. Still shows where I've stuffed up and need to make repairs and starts to blend the different materials all together.

 

For exterior work and big subassemblies I usually use Tamiya grey primer from a can. Misted on in light coats. Drys quick and sands out well( I think Mr. Surfacer sands better.) I can't get the acrylic primers to sand out at all but I've tried Vallejos primers a bit and while they cover well I still can't get em to sand worth a darn. Sometimes use automotive touch up silver rattle cans to check for scratches. Can't hide from silver paint!

 

Pretty much a hack and slash when I'm putting a kit together and without a coat of primer or two/three I'd never get a decent finish. My hats off to those that can though as I hate the sand prime resand routine.

 

Dan

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My hats off to those that can though as I hate the sand prime resand routine.

 

I know what you mean Dan. My wife renamed my hobby to 'sanding' ages ago.

 

Kev

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I always use primer - in my case Vallejo, mostly their grey primer, though I have sometimes used the black primer where I want to create shadows in corners etc.

 

I find the Vallejo primer cures to a nice smooth and satisfyingly hard finish that shows up imperfections beautifully ready for treating and provides an excellent surface for painting.

 

After 24 hours drying I correct any flaws, spray a light coat of primer where I do so and, after another 24 hours, very lightly run some sandpaper over it to get rid of any dust that may have settled when drying, wipe it with a damp cloth and its then ready for the pre-shading or base coat.

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I use Tamiya Fine white primer under acrylics but will use straight acrylics on the inside of aircraft. Another primer I like very much is Floquil Reefer White as it is very thin. I add a little lacquer thinner to it and it is as good as the Tamiya fine white but a lot cheaper. I use Gunze Acrylics as I like they way they lay down and spray. I use a H&S Infinity airbrush for most work and a Badger 200 for big jobs.

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