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Armor/AFV
For discussions on tanks, artillery, jeeps, etc.
What is the best acrylic primmer for armor
Trisaw
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California, United States
Joined: December 24, 2002
KitMaker: 4,105 posts
Armorama: 2,492 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 05:41 AM UTC
Tamiya Surface Primer works for me. Shop around...you can probably find it for cheaper than Amazon maybe.
https://www.amazon.com/Tamiya-Surface-Primer-180ml-Spray/dp/B000BMXRUM/ref=sr_1_1?crid=3PO0D5ZIE25GT&dchild=1&keywords=tamiya+surface+primer&qid=1599931839&sprefix=tamiya+sur%2Caps%2C258&sr=8-1

Mr. Surfacer 500-1200 also works with the higher the number, the smoother the primer.

https://www.amazon.com/Surfacer-Spray-170ml-Gundam-Hobby/dp/B00124OI24/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=MR+gunze+primer&qid=1599932147&sr=8-1

Whatever primer color you choose (gray, black, or white) is up to you although many figure modelers swear to black or gray.

I find that primer helps prevent mold, mildew, oils, and gunk from growing on the plastic and resin and eating through the top paint. Primer seals the -whatever- that may have been left on the plastic or resin, even if washed, and essentially kills it by sealing it from the environment. That way you have a dead level surface to repaint any chips or whatever...and to weather and add pigments without "feeding" the plastic -whatever- growths underneath moisture and air.

Sure, you can wash the plastic clean before painting, but unless you're wearing gloves all the time, the plastic is going to get your fingerprints on it. Primer prevents most growth from occurring.

And if you weather, scrub, and add pigments and accidentally take off the paint, you will always have a level primer color surface to build the paint back up on because weathering to bare plastic might cause water and moisture to be trapped underneath the paint and cause future problems. The primer acts as a rough surface to prevent water from flowing around bare plastic. Hey, real tanks use primer too.

It's like a framed photo or poster against a matte background. Professional art framers add a background so you don't "see through" the photo or poster. Some beginner modelers post photos of their finished builds and one can see the uneven paint job because the paint is translucent to the bare plastic---they didn't use primer to prevent the light from reflecting off the bare plastic underneath the thin paint.

But to each his or her own. You don't HAVE to use primer, but I highly recommend it after mold and mildew grew on my tanks painted without primer when I was a kid.
Headhunter506
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New York, United States
Joined: December 01, 2007
KitMaker: 1,575 posts
Armorama: 1,509 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 05:33 AM UTC
Add me to the list of Stylinrez proponents. Hands down the best hobby primer available.
Biggles2
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Quebec, Canada
Joined: January 01, 2004
KitMaker: 7,600 posts
Armorama: 6,110 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 05:05 AM UTC
I use Tamiya acrylics thinned with their lacquer thinner for airbrushing exclusively, so I've never had a need for primer on plastic kits. But as Scarred pointed out if you're adding brass, PE, or resin AM to the plastic kit it would be advisable to prime the entire model for a consistent surface.
jon_a_its
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England - East Midlands, United Kingdom
Joined: April 29, 2004
KitMaker: 1,335 posts
Armorama: 1,136 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 04:59 AM UTC

Quoted Text

Badger Stynylrez is great stuff. It's also sold and Ammo of Mig One Shot Primer.

There are some good videos about it.



This, it's the best stuff going, outside of etch primer for models & I haven't seen that for years!
Tojo72
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North Carolina, United States
Joined: June 06, 2006
KitMaker: 4,688 posts
Armorama: 3,509 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 04:06 AM UTC
I prefer the enamel acrylics like Tamiya Extra Fine or Mr Surfacer 1200,but my shop ran out so I tried the Badger stuff which really levels out and sands great.
Tank1812
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North Carolina, United States
Joined: April 29, 2014
KitMaker: 1,106 posts
Armorama: 885 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 03:45 AM UTC

Quoted Text

If your armor is a plastic kit, use of a primer is usually not necessary IMHO. A primer is to prepare a surface for painting - to smooth a surface, or to make adhesion pf paint better. If the surface is bare smooth plastic it's already prepped for paint - as long as the paint is designed for plastic models. Of course, resin, brass, and PE parts require priming for good paint adhesion. IMO primer, on plastic, is just another unnecessary (thick) layer of paint that could fill or obscure fine surface detail.



I think it depends on paint being used. If using Tamiya paint I agree no primer needed. If using Vallejo paints I would highly recommend using primer first. That’s been my experience as I use both other those brands.
Scarred
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Washington, United States
Joined: March 11, 2016
KitMaker: 1,791 posts
Armorama: 1,185 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 03:37 AM UTC
The use of a primer will promote adhesion especially since acrylics can have problems bonding to plastic. And metal. And resin. If you have done any putty work, PE, resin, or other types of mixed media, it is best to put down a primer coat to give everything a even colored base to paint on. Otherwise you can get an uneven coat with the various media showing thru the paint. To get an even coat you would have to apply a heavier base coat. I rarely used primer in the days of enamels. But I had some issues getting Tamiya paints adhering and they flaked right off. When I decided to go to nothing but acrylics I found that at times there was adhesion issues with the paint lifting off when I handled the model, even after allowing several days to fully cure. Primers also hide a multitude of sins, such as sanding marks. It also will show imperfections in the plastic that could show thru the paint which you will have to sand down your new paint job to fix and then you have to redo the whole paint scheme again. If you spot it in the primer you can fix it and just hit that area with primer.

There are some who say don't, some who say do, some say it depends. It's up to you.
kinmanb
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Texas, United States
Joined: March 19, 2013
KitMaker: 52 posts
Armorama: 49 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 03:29 AM UTC
I use the stynylrez- got it on Amazon for (I think) $15- 3 colors - black, white and grey. Easy to use, I am happy with it
18Bravo
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Colorado, United States
Joined: January 20, 2005
KitMaker: 7,219 posts
Armorama: 6,097 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 03:14 AM UTC
+1 on the above.
Biggles2
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Quebec, Canada
Joined: January 01, 2004
KitMaker: 7,600 posts
Armorama: 6,110 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 02:39 AM UTC
If your armor is a plastic kit, use of a primer is usually not necessary IMHO. A primer is to prepare a surface for painting - to smooth a surface, or to make adhesion pf paint better. If the surface is bare smooth plastic it's already prepped for paint - as long as the paint is designed for plastic models. Of course, resin, brass, and PE parts require priming for good paint adhesion. IMO primer, on plastic, is just another unnecessary (thick) layer of paint that could fill or obscure fine surface detail.
Scarred
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Washington, United States
Joined: March 11, 2016
KitMaker: 1,791 posts
Armorama: 1,185 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 02:08 AM UTC
Badger Stynylrez is great stuff. It's also sold and Ammo of Mig One Shot Primer.

There are some good videos about it.
oyoy23
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United States
Joined: July 11, 2009
KitMaker: 393 posts
Armorama: 117 posts
Posted: Saturday, September 12, 2020 - 02:03 AM UTC
Really don’t want to use enamel do I have a choice.