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Model Truck Feathering Tips And Tricks

Aug 11, 2008
Have you ever seen a truck on the road that had a paint job that really caught your eye? Did the paint seem to fade from color to color? You can achieve a paint job such as this on your model truck. This is called feathering. Instead of there being a sharp division between each of the colors there will be a steady blending of colors. This can be varied according to the look that being attempted.

If you are trying to achieve feathering on your model truck it can sometimes be very difficult if you are working in scale. Most of the time you will see sharp lines in the paint jobs. This is a major indicator that model was likely painted by hand. It doesn't matter if you even use an airbrush. If it is not done properly a feathering job can turn out poorly. One of the things to remember if you are going to feather to scale. One inch of feathering on a full size vehicle would be equal to 1/32th inch on a 1:32 scale truck.

Well, if you don't care about keeping this scale intact then you could just paint it and not worry. However, you know that you can make a good model look great if you can just get your paint job down pat. So how do you do this? With just a bit of ingenuity of course! There is a trick that will allow you to get precisely the amount of feathering you will need for your truck. One thing that will become apart is that if your mask is too close to the car you will end up with too little of a feathering effect. You need to find the balance between close enough without being too close to be able to achieve the look you are wanting. Consistency is also very important when maintaining distance from the edge.

Frisket Paper is one way to be able to achieve the mask you are looking for. A specially prepared paper used in protecting artwork from damage it is transparent and can allow the artist to handle other sections safely. If you are not able to get ahold of this sort of paper then a thin sheet of paraffin will do. You can trim this to fit the shape you are trying to protect. You then can take a section of fishing line and stick in onto the back of the paper or wax. Make sure it is near enough to the edge that will be getting the feathering treatment.

If it is just a little bit of feathering that you are looking for then you should place the fishing line roughly 1/16th inch from the edge of the mask. This will allow a small but noticeable amount of feathering. The mask will be held off of the model truck's surface by the line and allows a little paint to seep underneath which is what provides the feathering effect. If you need to lower or raise the amount of feathering you are looking for you just need to change the gauge of the fishing line. This can also allow you to get much closer to the original feathering effect than was possible before.

You will also want to make sure that you place the fishing line far enough away from the edge of your masking material. If you do not then you might end up painting a solid line rather than getting any feathering. This was what you were wanting to stay away from. With just a little trial and error you will soon be able to feather just like a professional. You will want to make sure that you do not remove your mask too quickly. If you do you may end up taking paint away as well.
About the Author
Victor Epand is an expert consultant for model cars, model trains, and model trucks. You will find excellent hobbying and trading resources here for model cars, model trains, and model truck feathering.
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