Tamiya Clear Flat question.

Discussion in 'Painting Questions, Tutorials and Guidebooks' started by Airframes, Jul 7, 2016.

  1. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    When using Tamiya Clear Flat (matt varnish, NOT Flat Base), what is the best thinning ratio for spraying, and what's the prefered thinner ?
    I have Iso alcohol, or water, and I can get the very small bottles of Tamiya thinner.
    It's a long time since I've used this - well over three years - and I seem to remember that it never dried fully matt, and took a long time to dry properly, remaining 'tacky' for some time.
    I've used my 'normal' mix of Humbrol Clear gloss, mixed with Tamiya Flat Base, on the Mitchell, having given up on the Humbrol Clear matt varnish, but I have a few small areas where it has still dried with a feint, misty grey finish, proabably as a result of the poor finish when I used the Humbrol Clear matt. I thought maybe a light 'dusting over' with the Tamiya clear flat might at least make the grey tinge disappear.

    Alternatively, can anyone suggest a good, acrylic matt clear coat ?
    I'm getting fed up trying various matt finishes, although mixing my own, as I have for many years, normally works well, even though it takes some experimenting each time it's mixed.
     
  2. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    I've just used that stuff on my Ta152 Terry so take a look at how it finishes. Not truly flat and just the right amount of sheen for me. I find though that the more you put on, the more chance you will have of getting a bit of chalking so small amounts are good. I just thin with clean water and have had no drying time issues. I was able to handle the model within 10 minutes but I avoid doing so for several hours and, even then, use facial tissues where I grasp the model.
     
  3. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Thanks Andy.
    I remember that it dries with a slight sheen, good for Luftwaffe subjects, which did have such a finish.
    I've got a virtually matt finish on the Mitchell, so adding the Tamiya varnish might make it look rather too patchy, but it's a possibility for future subjects, although I can only find it in the small, 10 ml bottles, which works out a tad expensive, compared to some other products, but if it works, then at least i know I can achieve a near matt finish.
    I've managed to remove most of the grey, cloudy spots, by wiping over with a damp cloth a few times. The remainder I might re-touch with paint.
     
  4. JKim

    JKim Well-Known Member

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    Is Tamiya Clear Flat relatively new? I was considering trying it but will not if it has even a hint of tendency to get "chalky white". I'm afraid that is going to ruin one of my builds if I keep using the gloss+Flat Base combo. I have found no good way of getting rid of that chalky white after it appears and I've gone as far as spraying straight gloss on it.
     
  5. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    The Tamiya Clear Flat varnish has been around for some years John.
    As mentioned, I used to mix Future and Tamiya Flat Base, then Humbrol Clear Gloss with the FB after the change to the formula for Future in the UK. It works well, as you probably know, but the mix ratio has to be just right to give the desired finish, without grey clouding or a chalky appearance, which means that constant testing has to be undertaken as it's mixed, which takes time and can be a bit of a pain.
    I'd happily put up with the not-quite-fully-matt finish of the Tamiya Clear Flat varnish, if I could obtain it in more cost effective, larger bottles - only the small, 10 ml bottles are available in the UK, which will just about cover maybe two models the size of the Mitchell, and at nearly £2.00 per bottle, that works out to be an expensive solution.
    But I guess it's not as expensive as ruining a model due to the chalky and possibly crazed and cracked finish if the home-made mix is wrong.
     
  6. fubar57

    fubar57 Well-Known Member

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    Not that I can help much Terry, being a brush painter and have used Tamiya Flat for years with great results except for my GB Catalina which was a disaster and has got me skeptical about using it again. I just finished reading this article and was quite surprised by the last comment and am now wondering in Tamiya Flat is also meant to be a mixer...
    Some Advice on Using Tamiya Clear through Airbrush | Military Modelling
    I have 3 or 4 other acrylic flats on hand and will be using them, Vallejo first.
    Here's another article about flats
    Armorama :: Acrylic Clear Flat Woes
     
  7. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    I believe the Flat Clear is nothing but Gloss Clear with some amount of Flat Base in it. Oddly, I've had problems with the Tamiya Gloss Clear not drying completely but not the Flat Clear.

    Terry, I'd suggest that, with proper thinning, a 10ml bottle of Flat Clear should last longer than you've estimated. I'd venture to guess that you could get 4 or 5 Mitchells form one bottle.
     
  8. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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    Crossed posts with Geo. Ah, so that's why I could not get my Clear Gloss to work. I guess I'll bin that stuff.
     
  9. Airframes

    Airframes Benevolens Magister

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    Thanks Geo. As far as I'm aware, Tamiya Clear Flat is a varnish, but their Flat Base is the mixer. Having read that last article, I would guess the problem is the Future - when the formula changed in the UK, I got exactly the same problems, as seen on the P-47 'Bridge Buster' diorama I did. But when I 'binned' the Future, and changed to Humbrol Gloss Clear with Flat Base, it worked, and continues to work, just as the 'old' Future did.
    Like the chap in the article, I just want a ready to use matt varnish that works, rather than have to mix and experiment every time, but every acrylic matt varnish I've tried, no matter what the thinning ratio, either dries semi-matt, or dries with a milky-grey or chalky, streaky appearance !
    I might just have to revert back to using enamel or polyurethane gloss and matt varnishes !

    EDIT:- crossed posts with Andy. Thanks Andy, I've already decided to try the small amount of Tamiya Flat Clear I have, thinning with water at various ratios. If I can get an acceptable finish, I might convert to using that, and damn the cost !
     
  10. fubar57

    fubar57 Well-Known Member

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    Got to thinking Andy, maybe keep it. Most of the Tamiya paint I use is of the flat variety so it might be worth a bit of experimenting using the clear gloss mixed with the flat as in one of the links. Might save time with adding a gloss coat before the decals
     
  11. Crimea_River

    Crimea_River Well-Known Member

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