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Pitbull Baits

Paint Question

6 posts in this topic

Ok I got a airbrush from Harbor Freight. I got some blank crankbaits coming. I got a box of Cretex paint from a buddy.

Now can I use model paint to paint with like Testers?

Do I need to primer the blank bodys if they are clear?

What type of primer do I need to get if I need to primer?

Then what would be a good cheap priced airbrush to get for detail?

I will get back to you guys on clear coating later Once I get to that point.

Thanks

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Pitbull,

I haven't had any success with using modeling enamel like Testors for my plastic lures. I'm sure it works fine brushed on, but I can't shoot it through my airbrush.

I paint a lot of new, unpainted cranks, and I never prime them.

I mask the bill, hold them over a jar of clean acetone, and, holding them by the bill so the lure is hanging straight down, I use an acid brush to brush the crank body from head to tail with the acetone. The excess acetone drips back into the jar.

The acetone cleans the surface layer of plastic. It is a solvent for the plastic, so it actually remelts the surface, and I have a "virgin" plastic surface to paint.

I haven't had a paint scheme peel off a crank all the way down to the plastic yet, so I'm pretty sure I'm getting a good bond. And, because the plastic is clear and "smooth", I don't need a thick bodied primer to cover up the lure's color, or to fill in defects.

Then I spray my base coat of Createx, typically pearl white, directly onto the crank, first with a light coat that's heat set with a hair dryer, and then with as many additional light coats as I need to get coverage. Light coats don't run or sag, and they heat set really well.

Going this way preserves the fine scale patterns and detials that are molded into the crank bodies I paint.

Then I do my paint scheme and top coat.

You can make some awesome clear water baits by only adding irredescent paint to the back and shoulders of the clear crank, and leaving the belly clear. Light, fog coats of irridescent, or any other Createx paint, keep the crank transparent, so a fish looking up at it in clear water only sees a hint of the lure, but is very aware of the water movement.

That has no negative cues, like some of my ham fisted paint schemes might.

Believe me, some of my first paint schemes seemed to have had a big, flashing, "Don't eat this!" warning sign on them in clear water. :lol:

It took me a while to learn that less can be more.

And I still get carried away when I'm painting, because it's fun! ;)

Good luck

Edited by mark poulson

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Most everyone that I have read about uses Createx paint. I'm not sure what a right or wrong way is. I have never painted plastic blanks, but have always used Pactra enamel from Testors or enamel from jannsnetcraft. I paint cedar that is primed first with white and I prime by dipping the entire lure in the white paint. I have to wait a good day or two for the primer to harden up. I use the cheap harbor freight airbrushes, the trick when you use enamel is to thin it with acetone and all enamels aren't created equal. You have to find the right mix of enamel and acetone that sprays well without clogging. Also, I always run about 1/2 bottle of acetone through the airbrush after painting each color to clear the nozzle. I sometimes use spray cans to acheive different color contrast; but I like using the enamels and creating my own custom colors.

Benji

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I think Mark covered it very well. It's a bad idea to mix different kinds of paint - water based, enamel, lacquer, etc. This is especially true for paint containing solvent because you will often get a reaction - paint bubbling, cracking, peeling - due to incompatibility between paint chemistry. If it doesn't happen when you shoot the paint, it will often happen if you use a solvent based topcoat like the popular Dick Nite S81 moisture cured urethane.

Some guys use primers, some don't. Some use an "adhesion promoter" like Bulldog or similar when painting plastic crankbaits. Mark uses acetone for the same effect. I don't use primers and haven't had a problem. Don't confuse primer with color basecoat. Primer increases paint adhesion. Color basecoat gives an opaque (usually white) foundation to cover underlying color differences and give you a solid color base for later color.

Airbrushes: There are lots of options. Use the SEARCH feature to explore them. Painting crankbaits is a system. The air compressor, airbrush, the paint and what you choose as a topcoat all work together. Whatever equipment you choose, airbrushing is more about skill than it is about the equipment. Good equipment makes things easier but only practice makes pretty crankbaits.

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I very rarely use enamels. If you have a good hobby store around, ask them about Model Master acryl. It is an acrylic made by Testors and sprays pretty good. My favorite though is Tamiya brand. There are alot of natural colors available and it sprays great.

For a detailing brush, just find one with a very small needle. I use an Iwata HP-CS for almost all my painting. Sometimes with a very thick metallic, I use my old Badger with a large needle. There are many low cost airbrushes out there that work fine.

Main thing is practice and have fun.

Good luck!

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Ok I got a airbrush from Harbor Freight. I got some blank crankbaits coming. I got a box of Cretex paint from a buddy.

Now can I use model paint to paint with like Testers?

Do I need to primer the blank bodys if they are clear?

What type of primer do I need to get if I need to primer?

Then what would be a good cheap priced airbrush to get for detail?

I will get back to you guys on clear coating later Once I get to that point.

Thanks

I got an airbrush from harbor freight about a year ago for about $15 and ive used 50 cent acrylic paint (thinned down with jst plain water), createx paint and model master enamal and they all work for me. Createx has been the easiest jst because it is already thinned. But the enamal flows great but its kind of a pain because I have to clean out my brush very quickly and very often because it dries very thick in the brush if you don't. Im sorry i can't help u with the clear coat. I jst use a dip coat and it works for me. And for the detail part, i turn the pressure way down to about 25 psi and jst go really slow. it works very well with the createx paint.

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