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Hataka Aluminium Palette

Hataka Aluminium Palette Review

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review October 2021 Manufacturer Hataka
Subject Aluminium Palette Part Number XP21/XP22
Pros Versatile tool Cons Nothing noted
MSRP (Euro) €2.43 (XP21)/€2.02 (XP22) excl.TAX


Hataka sent us a set of their new paint palettes for review, but until now, I had rarely used any sort of mixing cup/palette for paint mixing as these are used primarily for brush painting, and I primarily use an airbrush for my paint work. Over the years, I have had a variety of palettes on my bench, but for one reason or another, they never were put to work. That is until now. Thanks to my aging eyes, what I could see clearly in my (mis-spent) youth now require augmentation and my Optivisor allows me to work as before. More recently, I acquired a higher-powered lens set for my Optivisor which provides even closer/more powerful views of my work. Once my vision had become 'bionic', I could suddenly see the flaws that went ignored previously. My old paint brushes weren't effective in this new 'high resolution' environment, but a set of precision/detailing brushes from Anyz solved that problem. Now it was finally time to tame the paint.

A few years ago, in the build of the Italeri 1/32 F-35A Lightning II, I attempted to detail paint the weapons bays and for all of the reasons above, that experience was frustrating and didn't turn out as well as I had hoped. More recently, I tackled the Tamiya 1/32 F4U-1A Corsair, and with all of the problems above addressed, I began to brush paint in areas where the airbrush was no longer possible. In some cases, I needed to thin the paint being used, while in others, I needed to lighten or darken the hue for special effects. I briefly considered using a mixing cup, but there were the Hataka palettes. I grabbed one, poured in a few colors into the wells as well as a thinner, then dabbed some into the central recess to mix for my purposes. I suddenly understood what artists and modelers had been doing for centuries. What I especially appreciated with these stamped aluminum (aluminium for those of you who drive on the wrong side of the road and have far better pubs) palettes is the clean-up. The plastic palette that I used to have would retain some of the last color used, which didn't help with color mixing in later uses. The aluminum palette cleans quickly with Windex (for acrylics) or lacquer thinner on a paper towel.

What I really appreciated about the palette for my F4U-1A build, I wanted to replicate the dust/dirt build-up in the panel lines seen in some period color photos on my project, so the palette allowed me to experiment with acrylics and oils using different amounts of the appropriate thinner to achieve the look I wanted. These days, you can consider this a renewable mixing tool. So far, I haven't found these here in the US, but they are available in European hobby stores and they are very inexpensive.

My sincere thanks to Hataka Hobby for this review sample!