Monday, October 25, 2021

Vallejo varnish test


There's a discussion going on over at RMweb on replacements for Testors Dulcote - the fantastic American varnish which isn't imported any more, and will no longer be made as it's contains all sorts of terrible chemicals. 

Army paint from Games Workshop has been suggested, and last week I found a local boardgames cafe/shop that stocked this and the Vallejo range. Since my stock of Dulcote is down to a can and a bit, I thought I'd try the stuff on those Hornby Dublo models mentioned last week

Needless to say, they had sold out. Apparently, it flies out of the door as soon as they get it in stock. Good news for the shop, not so for Phil. 

What they did have, was Vallejo matt and satin varnish, along with the appropriate thinners - so I bought some out of curiosity. 

First up, the VW van. I felt that satin would be appropriate for this, and so mixed up a little 50:50 with thinners in the airbrush cup (yes, I know).  

It sprays beautifully. A fine coat that went on really well and dried quickly even without the attention of the hair drier. The result is a soft sheen, that looks great on a clean road vehicle. 

Next, the matt for the Scamell. Again, this was mixed in the cup (I'm such a rebel) and certainly sprayed well. However, it's not really matt, or at least as dead a finish as I expected. OK, this was a high-gloss model, but it's still got a little shine to my eyes. Not badly, but not as flat as expected. 

Having said, this, the ease of use of the paints scores well. I still need a rattle-can paint as I'm usually too lazy to use the airbrush, but this isn't a bad alternative.


Woody said...

For a really Matt finish I have found MIG Lucky varnish to do a great job. Sprays straight from the bottle and dries to a black Hole light grabbing finish in minutes!

Andy in Germany said...

A cheaper alternative is Montana Gold clear matt varnish. It's sold in art shops and works just as well as Testors Dullcote, in fact I stopped bothering with Testors.

Paul B. said...

I've used Vallejo gloss and matt on a couple of 1:72 lorries, good stuff that sprays nicely and dries as it should (although a second coat is sometimes needed when spraying matt over gloss, just like Dullcoat in fact).

Kiwionrails said...

One thing to be aware of that I've found with the Vallejo varnishes, is that they're soluable in meths, thus you shouldn't use their gloss if you're going to use the HMRS Methfix transfers.
Agreed though that they are lovely to spray!