SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: Rob Graham <>
Date: Thursday, 17 June 1999, at 10:50 p.m.
Hey, all:
Well, I finally found and bought an SnJ aluminum set, and it looks SO easy in the instructions. Is it THAT easy, really?? It seems MUCH better than the Metalizers. Any additional tips from the experienced users?
--Rob Graham
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: Mike Quan <>
Date: Friday, 18 June 1999, at 8:14 p.m.
In Response To: SnJ Metal Finishes (Rob Graham)
Hi Rob! I admit to being a somewhat disenchanted SnJ user. The results are really pretty good when you are finished - getting there is the hassle and potential hazzard. The paint finish that is sprayed on works just fine with the usual precautions when airbrushing. It is the use of that very, very fine aluminum powder that has caused me to abandon this product after a couple of tries. The powder is used to give that final, extremely realistic metal finish. But this powder is sooo fine and pervasive; I mean it gets into everything and goes everywhere once it is out of the bottle. Using a soft cloth to control application is not the answer. The powder is kind of sticky (whether by the nature of the product, electrical charge or whatever), and soon becomes loaded/smeared on your fingers, then unintended parts of your clothes, furniture, unintended parts of your model, hair, everywhere! It quickly becomes a nuisance to use, and I have not found a good, reliable way to control the powder so that when applying it to the paint, it doesn not wander off where it is not wanted, and get unintentionally ingested! If you find out a way, please let me know!
cheers, Mike
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: Rob Graham <>
Date: Saturday, 19 June 1999, at 8:56 a.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes (Mike Quan)
Thanks for the reply. I have had similar misfortunes with Testors' Metalizer. It DOES fly away and into places you don't want it to go. My first try with Metalizer resulted in a silvered canopy, though I THOUGHT it was all sealed up! I really don't like the way it peels up easily when masked, even with the lightest of masking.
I was hoping the SnJ would be better, and I have read some posts up here that it is a better product than Metalizer. Is it better, or is it maybe only SLIGHTLY better? My experience with the Metalizer is a good one, but not great. I like the look in its virgin polished appearance, but the sealer usually makes it look like silver paint, so I wonder what the benefit is by the time the model is finished (if any).
I sometimes wonder if the best results would be to use Bare Metal Foil, but building a B-29 or something might be a bit on the labor / cost intensive side, especially considering the amount of waste. But I would probably be willing to try it with my 1/32 Revell Hien (which actually has a decent interior, after re-checking the kit)
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: Gary Benjamin <>
Date: Saturday, 19 June 1999, at 6:18 p.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes (Rob Graham)
While surfing the net I found the Internet modeler site. In there I found an article on Foiling with aluminium foil. Look in the archives under March 99'.I have yet to try it myself, I hope to do the undersides of my Betty with this technique.
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: andrei koribanics <>
Date: Monday, 21 June 1999, at 10:57 a.m.
In Response To: SnJ Metal Finishes (Rob Graham)
Hi guys,
My two cents worth is that Model Master Metalizers are more than suitable for a NMF. Modeling NMF, or any finish, for that matter, always seems to present a dilemma: whether to try to obtain a 'perfect' finish in order to demonstrate our skills as craftsmen and create a pristine work of art, or whether to try to duplicate a 'realistic' finish in miniature. Fact is, I have rarely seen any aircraft (save for a P-51 or P-38, groomed for photography) that had an absolutely mirror-like NMF. I find using Metalizer, buffed to as high a finish as possible, overcoated with a thin coat of future, decals applied then lightly misted with dullcoat, gives a realistic, worn polished metal appearance.
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: Ronnie Murray <>
Date: Tuesday, 22 June 1999, at 10:08 a.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes (andrei koribanics)
Like Andrei said, only museum planes have that chrome look, in combat it's probably rarely seen. I like metal finshes with a more realistic
"weathered" appearance. I also like to take short-cuts in modeling when
possible. I've been using the Testors "aluminum plate" in the short spray
can. (it's #1451 or 1541). It's easy to work with and dries very fast.
When it dries, buff it with a t-shirt and it has a slick, shiney,
metallic finish. I don't overcoat it with anything. I lightly weather it
with washes or pastels. Give it a try! If you really want to use the airbrush...try floquil Railroad color "Platinum mist". It's very
durable and has a semi-worn aluminum look.
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all...
Posted By: Rob Graham <>
Date: Tuesday, 22 June 1999, at 4:51 p.m.
In Response To: SnJ Metal Finishes (Rob Graham)
Hey, all:
I appreciate all of the input on the SnJ and Metalizer finishes. I remember, as a kid, I really preferred Pactra "Flat Aluminum" for weathered finishes. It had a fine flake and looked very good.
I agree about the "museumy" look a chrome finish might bring. It could kill the look of a model. But, let's face it, some models should be shiny. A Northrop Gamma, a USAAC tested A6M5, etc. I also think my 1/32 Hien would look super in a real artistic scheme. Sure, the finish would be inauthentic, but I would like to see the bright and beautiful colors over a near chrome finish. I saw one like it once as a kid, and I recall it was the spark that started me away from Luftwaffe aircraft. It was spectacular.
I think that modeling can be easily picked up by future generations if the kids see something that draws them in, as happened with us. Then again, authenticity has a quality all its own...
Well, then that leads me to a question...
What grabs your eye on a model?
I suppose that I get drawn in by the typical attention getting features, such as color, etc (human nature?). Then I get drawn in by the subject matter, then the details and finished work keep me close. What gets you?
Still deciding on my Hien...
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all...
Posted By: Allan Black <>
Date: Wednesday, 23 June 1999, at 6:49 a.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all... (Rob Graham)
Hi Rob and all,
I also enjoyed the NMF opinions, hints and stuff. What this board is all about methinks.I'm currently working with Testors AS 12 from a spray can decanted into the airbrush.
I'm working with the idea,that because Japanese duralium of 1938-42? vintage had a a %? of magnesium in it, for strength, I'm adding a couple of drops of gloss white to try and simulate that effect. I think you can see that in some of the pix in FAOW etc., of Oscars and such. So far,so good although I'm not entirely satisfied, yet. In the pix, the NMF appears "whitish" to me. Anyone else?
What get's me,when viewing a model?
Well...its a serious effort by any modeler who's done his (or her) homework and has spent the time and trouble to portray an aircraft to make me smile and nod in appreciation.
Too general for you?
Well then it's a goodly weathered, late vintage Hasegawa or similar, JAAF A/C.
For kids today, there sure are a lot of other distractions to keep them away from modelling. But I'm of the opinion that it'll survive especially when we can use cameras on this board to show each other our efforts, in real time. Imagine that!
Allan Black
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all...
Posted By: Bill Sanborn <>
Date: Thursday, 24 June 1999, at 1:38 p.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all... (Rob Graham)
Hello Rob,
I have to put my two cents worth on the SNJ. I have not used the MM metalizer, but the SNJ was very easy to use and was very forgiving. I could handle the model in as little as 15 minutes. The finish is fairy durable and can be handled with bare fingers with out marring it. I have not used the buffing powder on an NMF finsh, but the paint by itself gives a good oxidized aluminum look. Buffing with a Q-Tip can bring out some shine with out going to a mirror. Painting panels different shades of black-gray-white before SNJ application will give a varied look of true NMF planes. What I disliked about it was that Tamiya paints did not adhere well over it, but MM and other enamels did. An other NMF paint I like is Floquel's "Old Silver"
Experimaent with the stuff I think you will like it.
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all...
Posted By: Mike Quan <>
Date: Thursday, 24 June 1999, at 9:26 p.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all... (Rob Graham)
Hi Rob! For me, it is first subject matter, then color, details and alignment that I look at. If there is a kit on the contest table that is seldom seen built or completed, then that is what I look at first (before the myriad Tamiyagawa 48th scale Zers! :^) ).
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes
Posted By: Brent <>
Date: Sunday, 27 June 1999, at 10:49 p.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes (Ronnie Murray)
I have read the earlier posts and agree with you. The metalizer paints tend to travel too much. The buffing powder with SnJ never really dries. I have silver fingerprints on other aircraft after handling my P-47. Don't clear coat! It ruins the finish! My favorite metalizer to date is Gunze's Mr Metalizer. It doesn't travel as bad as Testers and SnJ. The Gunze also masks well. Be aware that Gunze is unique in needing a primer. It doesn't stick to plastic. I have also tried Bare Metal Foil. Good stuff, but my P-51 appears yellow compared with my aircraft finished with metalizer paint. One good tip I learned from the window tinting industry is to spray the model with Windex before applying Bare Metal Foil. Windex allows the foil to float around on the plane until it is located properly. Then squeegee the Windex out. The Windex will not attack the platic or the Bare Metal Foil adhesive. I have found this to be a very useful tip. No creases or anything. Another thing I do with Bare Metal Foil is to buff it with different grades of very fine steel wool and sand paper before I trim it. Buffing it this way give the foil a realistic grain and dullness.
I wrote a small article on bare metal finish prep which can be found at:
I hope it will help some of you out.
Good luck!
Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all...
Posted By: Fernando de Moraes <>
Date: Monday, 28 June 1999, at 6:16 p.m.
In Response To: Re: SnJ Metal Finishes and a question for all... (Mike Quan)
Hello all,
I will put my "two cents"....
It's a very interesting discussion...Me and my brother, we try a lot of aluminium finishes - Humbrol, Gunze, Model Master, automotive paints, etc - and we arrive at the conclusion that the best results will be reached with Model Master Aluminium Buffing or Non-Buffing paints. We spray it and take a soft shirt and bross it until it looks good!
We still have the problem of "how protect the paint on the kit", because it really goes out even with the most carefully handling (the fingertips looks very "punk" in their aluminiun plate...) :^)
Simple: we spray a very thin coat of aeromaster varnish...very, very thin...
It protects the aluminium plate and doesn't kill the "aluminiun effects" that is the attractive of the Model Master paints.
I built an Airfix 1/48 Spitfire MK XXIII (I prefer Zeros, but sometimes fell in love by Spits and FW 190s too..) overall natural metal (1946 finish) and win a gold medal in my city' contest last year. And it looks good until today! And I can handle it!
The only problem is that Model Master are almost impossible to buy here in Brazil.....we must count on the foreign friends :^)
And Rob's question (Hello, Rob!): I put my eyes FIRST on rare models, like Jakes, Judys, Jills, Me 309s, He 162s, etc....and my avaliation includes good assemblage and exact details.....and I prefer an artistic interpretation of colors than a "supposed actual shade of colors".
After all, very few of us were in WWII to say something, isn't it?
Take care, dude,
Metallizer, Future, and Mottling
Posted By: Seth Lorinczi <>
Date: Thursday, 13 May 1999, at 12:17 p.m.
This echoes an earlier posting (by Bill Sanborn?) concerning clear coats over metallizer. Say I'm planning a NMF with green mottling. Seems to me the best approach would be to paint the NMF and hinomarus, then seal with either metallizer sealer or better yet Future (more impervious to thinner) and then paint green mottling in acrylic (easier to clean mistakes than enamel). My question is: Would a clear coat degrade the metal finish significantly? I realize that the green would hide most of the NMF, but this question also applies to pastel weathering and stains over NMF.
Thanks in advance,
Re: Metallizer, Future, and Mottling
Posted By: Dan Salamone <>
Date: Thursday, 13 May 1999, at 3:29 p.m.
In Response To: Metallizer, Future, and Mottling (Seth Lorinczi)
Hi Seth,
For a model with a mottle over the NMF, may I recomend using Floquil Old Silver instead. This way you do not have the problems with a fragile (metalizer) paint surface, etc. You can tint and buff out the Floquil paint and it looks quite nice.
For an overall NMF model, I like SNJ spray metal far better than Metalizer for many reasons. SNJ is available from places like Roll Models. It does not need to be oversprayed to protect the finish, in fact, a clear coat is detrimental because it takes the sheen away....
Most ways to paint NMF have drawbacks, but the above are 2 ways that I find to minimize these problems. Hope it helps,
Re: Metallizer, Future, and Mottling
Posted By: Grant Voakes <>
Date: Thursday, 13 May 1999, at 7:24 p.m.
In Response To: Metallizer, Future, and Mottling (Seth Lorinczi)
I have actually used Future over a metallizer, and can report that I had very little problems with the approach you describe. I have used both Testors metallizer and Gunze Mr. Metallizer. I preferred the Gunze, as I found that it tended to buff up to a better finish than the Testors did. This was then oversprayed with Future to seal it and prevent any marring of the metal finish. In spraying the mottle pattern, I used an acrylic and found that I had to be very careful when thinning it, otherwise the paint tended to pool and run. I have also found that Future is, in some aspects, better than metallizer sealer, as it is easier to "chip" paint off if sealed with Future than with the sealer.
I have not found that any of this degrades the metal finish, although the net effect is that the final finish is somewhat duller than just straight metallizer.
Hope this helps.
Re: Metallizer, Future, and Mottling
Posted By: Rob Graham <>
Date: Thursday, 13 May 1999, at 9:44 p.m.
In Response To: Metallizer, Future, and Mottling (Seth Lorinczi)
I can't tell you too much about what to do with metalizer, but I can tell you what NOT to do. I've never used SnJ, but I want to. I can't find it locally.
Don't put metallizer on without polishing the plastic to a mirror like perfect finish. Every blemish WILL show.
Don't put a little on. Get it with several thin coats, then polish it about 20 minutes later.
Be gentle with it. It is fragile.
Polish it until it looks really like shiny aluminum foil.
Be gentle with it. It is fragile.
Use all sorts of things to polish it. Toothpicks, Q-Tips, artists' pastel supplies, whatever you can find. Experiment a LOT.
Don't use Testors' low-tack masking EVEN ON TOP OF THE SEALER. The finish is too fragile. Use wet tissue paper cut into pieces.
Be gentle with it. It is fragile.
Don't seal it with gloss lacquer, as it will attack the finish and make it look like a fine silver paint. Use a LIGHT coat of metalizer sealer or Future (or Tamiya clear??).
Be gentle with it. It is fragile.
Be gentle with it. It is fragile.
Be gentle with it. It is fragile.
Make sure you are gentle with it. It is fragile. I think that sums up my experience with the Testors Metalizer.
Take care,
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