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  1. #1

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    Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    Hi all:

    I'm in the process of finally getting moving my Leopard 2A6 build. I've put the lower hull together up to the point of putting the treads on. Now the hard part, the painting.

    I've primed and painted the Nato Green for all of the part trees.

    I'm thinking about working up the upper hull and turret with nothing inside to do the camo job. Then putting in all of the electronics and other goodies.

    I've never used an airbrush before (tried once on my Tiger I, and ended up with the straight sand colored model). So it seems like there are two options here.

    1) do a masking job in two parts and spray paint the brown and black colors.

    2) do a freehand airbrush job.

    Any suggestions?

    If you suggest the airbrush route, what would you suggest as a good setup for a 1/16 size model?

    Thanks,
    Ira

  2. #2

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    Although I've yet to start my leopard, I've done 1/35 scale armor. I'd imagine its pretty much the same....

    I'd probably not mask as it makes the edges too hard. I freehand and it comes out looking pretty good....

    Since you are pretty new to the airbrush, definitely practice before trying the scheme or colors on your tank....

    I'm not sure what you mean by "setup"......
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  3. #3

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    When I built mine, I built everything first, and simply masked off everything that i didn't want painted with painter's tape. The Leopard was difficult to paint since the lower turret is kinda stuck on the upper hull when assembled.

    You can make the camo edges hard. I've seen pics of NATO vehicles, including Leopard 2A6 tanks painted with hard-edged camo or soft-edged camo.

    The beauty of airbrushing is covering up your mistakes is pretty painless. If you goof off and accidentally, over sprayed brown of black color in one area, simply airbrush your mistake away.

    If you want a nice airbrush setup, I'd go for the Tamiya HG airbrushes, or Iwatas. You can also look at Paasche double-action models, they're fairly inexpensive and worked great, but not as nice as Iwatas.

    Or if you're really good at hand-painting, I'd say go for that route. Me, I prefer airbrushing because I always have rpoblems with seeing my brushstrokes whenever I hand paint.

    Here's my incomplete Leopard. I painted it free-handed with an airbrush. It's incomplete because I have yet to decide how much I should weather it.


  4. #4

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    Thanks for the info. Your Leo looks great! I'd be thrilled to get that sort of result. Sounds like I should go with the Airbrush route. I need to learn how to use one at some point, since I've got about 5 other camo required 1/35 models in the hopper that I've been putting off for years.

    I'll take a look at the Tamiya and Iwata.

    By the way, what did you use as a radio? I'm interested in the Spektrum Dx6i (or other 2.4ghz set) but don't want to lose any functionality.

  5. #5

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    I'd go with the airbrush route also. Airbrushing my Leo was the first time I ever airbrushed anything and it came out great. I freehanded using the pictures with the kit as a guide. Just get some paper and practice with your airbrush; you'll get the hang of it pretty quickly.

  6. #6

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    Make sure your airbrush is double action, that way you can control the paint flow. I freehand all my camo and although I'm not that experienced I don't think they come out to bad.
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    remember.....it's just a plastic tank

  7. #7

    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    I'm with everyone else on this. Finish the tank, then mask and paint it. That's how I do mine. I highly recommend an airbrush (dual action). Practice on the boxtop before you start.

  8. #8

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    A little tip for those of you who like to hand brush your paint jobs. to help prevent brush strokes left in the paint always brush back into the area you have painted. Dont brush your strokes towards the area that still needs the paint. this way you actually brush over your previous strokes wich helps blend them in, making them less noticable. I have painted a lot of structural steel over the years and this technique makes life much easier. Faster work and a better paint job.
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  9. #9

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    RE: Tamiya 1/16 Leopard 2A6 Camo Painting

    All are good suggestions above and I will incorporate them all in an up coming build. Build the model then paint it, is the approach I use.

    I too recommend building a 1/35 Tamiya Leo first to work through any errors, develop skill and confidence and discover your final paint finish look on this kit before moving on to paint at 1/16 scale.

    Plus when you done with the little 1/35 scale paint study Leopard, photograph it (I find it is easier to work from photos), then sell the built 1/35 kit on ebay and use the profits to pickup some detail parts for the rc kit.

    Just did that yesterday, plus I had won this little Leo kit from Tamiya in a builders drawing, so turned out to be a cost effective paint finish study for sure: http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...m=190282546502
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