A lot has been asked about filters in the past few years. What are they? How do they work? What’s the best color for use with Panzer Gray? How much do I thin the paint? Should I use enamels, acrylics, or oil paints? To help the modeler answer some of these questioNs, MIG Productions has created SIN Industries Filters for models.
MIG Productions offers over a dozen different colors. The pre-mixed filters come in a sealed 35ml plastic jar and save time having to custom mix the right consistency and color. Since you only use a small amount each time each bottle will last for numerous models. MIG also packages selected filters into three jar packs which fit specific model themes such as. #P403 Afrika Korps Filter Set, #P247 Allied Filter Set, etc.
These pre-mixed enamel based filters are designed to add subtle color effects to a painted surface. The most important tip to remember is that filters are most effective on a Matt/Flat/Dull surface finish. There are microscopic pits in a Matt finish which trap the pigment once the filter is dry. On a gloss surface, these pits are smoothed over and the pigments have nothing to settle in to and settle on the surface which can be wiped off.
Green for Light Green will make the green more vibrant. Tan for Tritonal Camo will dull down the colors and reduce the contrast. Blue for Panzer Gray will add more depth and color to the dark gray base. The line continues to grow with colors formulated for specific colors and historical camouflage color schemes. But that doesn’t mean the Tan for Tritonal Camo is only useful for a Panther tank; the tan filter can be used to add warmth to a gray base, or tone down a vibrant base color. Any of the Brown filters can be used to create heat stain or rust effects on engine decks or exhausts. The names are basically guides; the real importance is the effect you are after.
Some tips from experience.
1. Control how much filter is on your brush. Don’t flood the surface of the model. Dip the brush then draw some of the filter out with a paper towel, then apply it to the model.
2. Filters can be layered to reach a specific color or intensity. Be sure to allow the filters sufficient time to dry between coats.
3. Colors can be mixed if you want a specific effect.
4. Don’t be limited to thinking of these as just filters. They can be used for numerous other effects.
5. Be creative. Use a blue filter over certain areas that may be more in shadow and a tan or yellow ochre filter for areas which catch sunlight.
6. When properly stirred, the filters are very strong. The filters can be thinned further with MIG Thinner for Washes, Turpenoid, or any mild odorless paint thinner.
7. MIG Filters can be mixed with oil paints for further color options.
8. The pigment which has settled in the bottle can be scooped out for more intense applications or pigment for specific effects.
MIG Productions offers a line of pre mixed washes for use with weathering models. The pre-mixed enamel based wash is available in a plastic 75ml which saves time having to custom mix the right consistency and color. Currently they are available in Brown Wash, Neutral Wash and Dark Wash. The color you use depends on the base color of the model or specific effects you want to achieve. Neutrall Wash works better on light tans and light greens and worn white wash as a Dark Wash would have too much contrast against the lighter base color. Brown wash would be useful on a yellow ocre base or even a Panzer Gray and the Dark Wash is good for brown or dark green paint or to represent a heavy buildup of oil and grime.
A wash is different from a filter in the ratio of paint versus thinner and the application technique. While a filter alters the base color, a wash is used to accent panel lines or small details like hinges and rivets or to represent accumulated oil and grime. Filters are applied with a larger brush on larger areas but washes are generally applied with a smaller brush to panel lines and recess. Capillary action draws the wash along the recess so you don’t have to trace the feature. It is very helpful to apply a wash to a gloss finish as gloss seals the microscopic pits in the paint and contains the wash to the recesses. Any wash that makes it onto a raised surface can easily be wiped off since it rests on the gloss. With a Matt finish, a wash would feather out from the recess and stain the paint.
Some tips from experience
1. The MIG washes have a higher surface tension than traditional washes mixed with oils. They also have a very high pigment content so are a little stronger than ones I normally mix, so I mix a little Turpenoid Odorless Paint Thinner with the MIG Wash at the time of use for easier application.
2. Be sure to work in a well ventilated area, the thinner used is pretty strong.
3. The thinner is more aggressive than some odorless paint thinners like Turpenoid. Certain brands of plastic kits, Bandai for one, will become brittle if the wash attacks bare plastic.
4. The pigment which has settled in the bottle can be scooped out for more intense applications of pigment for specific effects.
Special thanks to Adam Wilder for the review samples.