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Model Car World Military Finishes

Model Car World Military Finishes Paint First Look

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review February 2016 Manufacturer Model Car World
Subject Military Finishes Product Numbers See below
Pros Lacquer-based military colors Cons See text
Skill Level Experienced MSRP (USD) $7.50 (one ounce jar)

First Look

The names on the paint labels above are not a contradiction. Wings, Wheels and Waves, an Ohio hobby store chain, recently purchased Model Car World which specializes in (you guessed it) model cars. In addition to resin conversions, this company is able to replicate a wide range of colors for classic cars and its new owner saw the potential for using the same color-matching technology for military colors. As you would expect from automotive paints, these are lacquer-based finishes that are easy to airbrush and are quick to dry/cure. When they contacted us for an opportunity to try some of these in the lab, of course we said yes.

As you know, we've been looking extensively at acryilic paints as there are a variety of companies that are producing quality colors to fill the void in the US market. Gunze produces a series of lacquer-based acrylics but some have found them challenging to use and sometimes hard to find. Of course you must have a well-ventillated area to spray lacquers and/or a good quality spray booth to keep vapors from annoying your significant other.

These three colors may or may not look familiar, but we have Russian 4B0, German Panzergelb (panzer yellow), and Panzergrau (panzer gray). What makes these interesting for me is the concept a few other paint companies have used over the years - glossy finishes. Once you apply a solid primer coat on your tank (such as Tamiya Primer), you would apply the 4BO, Panzergelb, or Panzergrau as your base coat (there are other colors in the line, these will be our test colors). In the case of the panzer yellow, you would also apply the panzer green and panzer brown/red-brown to build your camouflage, but the end-result would still be a smooth glossy finish which is ready for decals. What's more, the glossy lacquer is ready for the enamel or acrylic-based washes where these will flow smoothly as there is no texture from flat finishes to divert the wash.

Of course these colors do look a bit dark, but so are flat colors that are treated to a glossy clear coat for decals and/or weathering. When you're ready, spray the model with your favorite flat/matte/semigloss finish and these colors will lighten accordingly. I'll be trying these out on an upcoming build to see how they perform, but based on their pedigree of an extensive automotive line of colors, I'm not expecting any surprises. Stay tuned and I'll share the results.

My sincere thanks to Wings, Wheels and Waves for these review samples!