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Removing Oil Paints


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Hay All,


My friend just gave me an old Partha dragon that he never finished and it has oil baised paint on it and I was woundering how to take it off so I could paint it. Would it be the same as taking off acrilic paint or do I need to do some thing else to take it off.

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The Dragon is pewter. Is acetone better, I can alwise go get some?


I just don't know if those chemicles are safe on pewter. i guess if they don't melt plastic containers they should be safe enough.


BTW pine sol is also used to strip metal minis. I just prefer acetone for speed and because it can strip a mage knight in 30 seconds.


  6. How do I strip paint?


      There are several substances which will work, outlined below.  Other

      than the top two (which are the author's personal default choices),

      they're in no particular order.

        a) Pine Sol for a 24-hour soak then brush off remaining paint with

    a soft toothbrush.  Works great on metal.  Brian Lojeck

            <[email protected]> ran extensive tests on Citadel plastic

    genestealers and Pine Sol for paint removal.  Here are his


            "I soaked the plastic genestealer in about 50-50 Pine Sol/water

    solution for 7-8 hours (a nights sleep).  The plastic didn't seem

    softer, the detail didn't seem any worse, and the paint came off

    pretty well (as it always does with Pine Sol. it was hard getting

    the paint out of the cracks (I soaked in acetone to do that)."

    Then he soaked some unpainted Citadel plastic figures in another

    50-50 Pine Sol/water solution:

            "The figure survived whole, without softening or loss of detail.

            The solution turned milky white about 30 minutes after the

    experiment started, but had cleared back to golden by morning."

    <Britt's note - that's the standard Pine Sol reaction in water,

    does same when I'm cleaning the toilet.>  Brian left the figures

    soaking another 48 hours and they didn't mar under the toothbrush

    bristles, but he was able to stick his fingernail into the plastic

    about 1/16".  It looks like the 50-50 mix is the key.  Certain

    other pine-oil cleaners of less strength than Pine Sol are on the

    market.  Anyone who tests these on plastic figures is encouraged

    to send the author your results for inclusion here.

        b) Chameleon model paint stipper from Custom Hobbyist, Inc. found in

    model railroad shops.  Sort of expensive, but _reusable_, water

    soluable, and really fast.

        c) Floquil/Polly S Dio-Sol.  Also purportedly dissolves glue.

    Won't harm your plastic as much as Pine Sol, but reportedly loses

    detail due to the amount of scrubbing necessary for the recesses.

        d) Brake fluid.  Won't melt your plastic, but might melt your hands...

    2-3 hour soak _maximum_, usually works faster.

        e) Dettol, the pharmaceutical cleaner.  Works much like Pine Sol, but

    I have no information on its potential to melt plastic.  Though it

    didn't melt the base on the test figure, bases probably aren't

    polystyrene.  It did remove glue, though.  (Thanks to Steve Gill

    for this bit.)

        f) "The Sainsbury's home brand pine disinfectant (UK).

    It actually gives pine oil as one of it's ingredients.  In testing

            it works very well and costs roughly 99p per 750ml bottle."  (More

            thanks to Steve Gill who found this product and tested it.)

        g) Acetone nail polish remover.  Smells, peels skin, melts plastic,

    takes paint off metal like a champ.

        h) Isopropyl alcohol, the stronger the better.  Lab grade, if you

    can get it.  This seems to be the safest product for use on plastic

    miniatures, and also the most universally available.  "It takes

    off acrylic paints in almost no time, but reportedly doesn't do as

    good a job in crevices as Pine Sol does.  As for oil-based

    paints...  "after several days of soaking, renewing renewing the

    solution, scrubbing... the figurine I tested has still a good

    portion of its paint on, mainly on the zones that I cannot access

    with a toothbrush." - Magali Mathieu

        i) Easy-Off oven cleaner.  And wear gloves.  It reportedly will not

    harm metal or plastic minis.  Remember to use GOOD ventilation.

    (Thanks to Richard Kurtin for this information.)

        j) "Bix Paint Stripper.  Buy the sprayable, rather than the jelly

    mix. It smells bad, is volatile, and will go after your skin if

    you forget your gloves.  It will remove enamel paint with minimal

    scrubbing, and does a pretty good job on acrylic. It _WILL_ eat

    plastic, so don't even think about putting your Genestealers

    in it. Also, you'll probably find yourself replacing your

    toothbrush more often." - Pete Siekierski

        k) "Methylene Chloride.  One of the components of Bix Paint Stripper,

    MC is rarely available in its purest form (I've no idea where my

    dad got his can, and neither does he!). It is extremely volatile.

    Do not light up near a can of methylene chloride! It will also do

    a number on your skin, making it wrinkled like you've been all day

    in the bath. Wear gloves! Also, be sure not to wear metal jewelry.

    Because of its high rate of evaporation, MC "chills" metal, and

    this can be very uncomfortable if you immerse a ring in it...

            On the plus side, pure methylene chloride is even more effective

            than Bix, which contains only a small amount. It burns right

    through any kind of paint that you'd care to put on a miniature,

    and will reduce plastic Genestealers to shapeless lumps (big

    deal, heavy flamers do that too!). It will "chill" lead or pewter

    miniatures, so they will feel cold to the touch, but in a room-

    temperature environment, this will wear off quickly. Like the Bix

    stripper, you'll find yourself replacing your toothbrushes more

    often." -  Pete Siekierski <[email protected]>

    (Archiver's note: Proper dental hygene suggest that you replace

    your toothbrushes every other month anyway...)

        l) Poxy Scum <[email protected]> in Australia also offers this

    info:  "I found that Rexona Sport pump spray, not the aerosole

    works quite well, almost immediately on acrylic Citadel paints. 

    It is best used for spot cleaning as it works almost instantly to

    soften paint and is quite safe on plastic and metal. 


      As you can see, there are a lot of products that will remove paint.  Most

      are caustic.  The author recommends a non-caustic product.  Pine oil

      cleaner will remove any type of paint (acrylic, oil-based, Rust-O-Leum,

      fingernail polish, etc.) from miniatures with no loss of detail, no

      caustic residue, and no hazardous fumes.  It's safe for metal miniatures

      and will not dissolve the glue holding parts together.  Pine-Sol is the

      best brand, as it's 19.9% pine oil, but any percentage over 5% pine oil

      will strip paint (it just requires a longer soak in the less-powerful

      cleaners).  It also works on paint that's been on for several years (the

      author successfully removed 10-year old Testors from a metal miniature

      with a 2-day Pine-Sol soak).

      For plastic miniatures, Pine Sol in a 50-50 solution with water, else

      isopropyl alcohol is your best bet.

      Dettol, a product from the UK, seems to work as the US Pine-Sol does

      in preliminary testing.  More information will be made available as

      testing continues.

      Simply place the miniature in a container which will allow full

      coverage, pour in enough pine oil cleaner to cover, and let it soak

      for 24 hours or more.  The longer the soak, the better the stripping

      (the author has soaked metal miniatures for over a week with no damage

      resulting).  If you're doing multiple miniatures, it's best to soak

      them seperately, if possible.  Once the paint starts to dissolve, it

      causes a sliminess that can get on the others.

      After the soaking, take an old toothbrush (dry) and scrub.  A soft

      bristled toothbrush is best, however using soft then stiff will get

      most everything without special work.  The finest details are kept,

      the paint comes off easily, and the smell doesn't try to knock you

      out.  If some paint remains stubborn, another soak will do the trick. 

      (The tip of a toothpick is also good for crevasse-cleaning as are

      standard pipecleaners.)  Do wear gloves if you're skin-conscious.  The

      author doesn't and has never suffered for it, but others report peeling

      and irritated skin.

      NOTE:  Many people have complained about the pine-cleaner soak

      darkening the metal of the miniature.  The author just finished

      cleaning a lead miniature on which the acrylic paint had been for

      two years.  It soaked for 24 hours and was first scrubbed with a

      soft toothbrush then a stiff one until all the paint was removed.

      Then the soft brush was washed clean and hand soap (the bar of

      Ivory by the sink) was applied to the brush and the miniature was

      brushed down vigorously, as one would do teeth.  It took about 5

      minutes, but the lead shined up as good as the fresh-from-the-package

      figures it ended up beside on the shelf.  So the `dark metal'

      syndrome can be taken care of, if it's important to you and you

      care to spend the time.

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