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Transparent miniatures help

Cranky Dog

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Having read this thread, I'm interested in trying the Tamiya clear paints.

I agree. There's gold in dem dare threads. I bought all of the Reaper MSP clears during the 12 Days event, and I'm very excited about using them on normal minis, but I will have to get a couple Tamiys clears just for the translucent Bones. It's amazing how much good information the people here come up with to deal with every new type of mini.

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Having read this thread, I'm interested in trying the Tamiya clear paints. Are these such as TAMX25 81525 Acrylic Mini X25 Clear Green, and similar but in other colors?



Yup. They run from X-19 Smoke - which, over bare metal or metallic silver paint, gives a really interesting armor effect, to X-27 Clear Red, skipping

X-20A Acrylic Thinner, X-21 Flat Base, and arguably X-22 Clear.


Giving a quick rundown,


X-19 Smoke - smokey grey paint. Good over metallic paints to give armor effects.

X-22 Clear - good for adding shine to matte paints, probably a decent sealer as well

X-23 Clear Blue - good for water effects

X-24 Clear Yellow - haven't played much with this

X-25 Clear Green - good for the translucent green Bones figures

X-26 Clear Orange - haven't played much with this

X-27 Clear Red - good for blood effects, and on the translucent red Bones figures


If I was grabbing them again - I'd grab the Clear Green first, because it Just Works™ on the translucent green Bones. The Clear Red is a decent second option, but it looks a bit wierd using it for fire elementals as you get the usual 'inverted fire' colors with the crevices being a darker color, and then it's a toss up between Clear Blue for water, or Smoke for armor.

Edited by Laoke
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The Tamiya's are translucent - they give a result similar to stained glass or liquid on a figure. That's why they see use as blood & water effects. They're also alcohol based and somewhat tricky to work with in that they're as sticky as a stick insect.


Do you think an alcohol-based wash will work? I have some 91% Isopropyl Alcohol and Liquitex Inks. Rather than 1:1 water to ink, I can fiddle with 1:1 alcohol : ink.


fwiw, I tried Green QuickShade Ink (controlled wash), and Pledge with green craft paint (slop and glop). They didn't bead, but sorta "coagulated" a bit, making the lines I painted a little "blotchy". If you have some on hand, maybe you'll have better results than I did. Chris Palmer had less beading with soap on regular Bones, but I'm not sure if the wash dries to show off the details well. Another problem is that the translucent is see through (duh) so any washes painted into the folds of the back of the figure can be seen front the front, making the details confusing and harder to distinguish.


OTOH, With the skeletons in the flames, I was able to just build up layers of white paint on the skeletons. I think I coated it with a thin wash of Pledge and green craft paint first. The green acted like the black "primer coat" in the figure, influencing the layers of white on top of it. Maybe I should just slobber on Pledge by itself or with ink then go from there...


EDIT: Future Floor Polish looks promising. It has a glossy finish, but, for transluscents, that's fine. You can also paint on top of it, although it has low "tooth". With ink, it was tricky to give the figure a proper wash (1:1 Future and water runs all over the place...), so the next attempt is to try it as a "primer" on top of the plastic. You can strip the polish with more polish (and otherwise isopropyl alcohol works fine).

Edited by ced1106
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Do you think an alcohol-based wash will work? I have some 91% Isopropyl Alcohol and Liquitex Inks. Rather than 1:1 water to ink, I can fiddle with 1:1 alcohol : in


Yeah, it'd likely work. Hell, ink / water wash would probably work. What I found with paint washes over the Clear paints was that they tended to make the translucency 'cloudy' for want of a better way to put it - they change the opacity in a fairly irregular fashion. Ink however produced a much more consistient result, even watered down.


Give it a shot and report back - if it works well, then some yellow + orange ink and my credit card have a date coming up >.>

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Water and ink wasn't working because, as the solution dried, the ink would "coagulate", sorta like beading on a very small (but still noticeable) scale. Since we're painting directly on plastic rather than primers (I also tried future floor wax as a "primer" though it has much less "tooth" than conventional primers), that's not too surprising. Alcohol and future floor wax have less surface tension than water. Multiple layers of future floor wax with very little ink might work. Green QuickShade Ink added to 91% Isopropyl Alcohol (turns into a suspension) had less of this "coagulating" for tiny recesses (eg. hair and skin folds) but leaves tide marks on larger recesses.


Undiluted Future Floor Wax and whatever ink (eg. Liquitex, Quick Shade Ink) looks promising. Much like painting with regular washes, less wash over an area (like the head of one of the ghosts) makes it look lighter. Unfortunately, I did a "slop and glop" on the ghost and his hands are too dark, so it's off to the strip mines again. Luckily, Future washes off with Future. Not sure when I'm actually going to paint these things -- mixing my own washes *and* layering coats of washes suddenly looks more work than I intended to do!

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Only one point I do not like, it is the red translucent fire. Mostly because I see so often yellow drybrushed fires. Fire painted from the inside out.


That was my first thought when I got the red elemental minis.  I would have preferred yellow, or at least a "fiery orange" rather than the deep/dark red that I got here.  However, I've gotten fairly decent results by painting white-yellow-orange in the /recesses/ of the fiery figures, and then leaving the edges red.  Sure, everywhere I paint in the deep areas won't be TRANSLUCENT, but it still seems to work nicely enough on the table.  The deeper red therefore ends up at the extremities of the figure, where the plastic tends to thin out a bit (for greater translucence), giving the figure something of a "soft" edge that I think contributes nicely to communicating that it's a non-solid entity, even if the core of the figure is bright and opaque.  (The effect seems to capture better in person, rather than in a photo, though.)


Example: Large Fire Elemental:



I wish mine looked so good. has anyone tried simple green on the translusants? if so how does it work?

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A little thread necromancy here, as I realized I never shared these pictures:

This is a selection of the green translucent Bones, where I have (so far) only used black and Tamiya Clears. These are all the same green as shown in the bottom row, but you can see that the use of the Tamiya Clears appears to make them more translucent, and even tints the color. 


The one on the left was washed with Tamiya Clear Yellow, the one on the right is untouched.  Bases are just plain flat black. 



The one on the left is untouched, the one on the right has the figures done with Tamiya Clear Green, and the smoke done with Tamiya Clear Smoke. 



the one on the left is untouched, the one on the right is Tamiya Clear Yellow.  The one in the middle is a mix of Tamiya Clear Green and Tamiya Clear Green. 

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And the reds and blues:

I don't have any untouched of the fire elemental to compare to. 

I did these so long ago, I forget which is which. I believe the one in the center was done with Tamiya Clear Yellow, the one on the left with Tamiya Clear Orange and the one on the right with Tamiya Clear Red. But don't quote me on that. 

The one on the left is untouched, the one on the right is Tamiya Clear Blue.  

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So, I used games workshop washes on my translucent ones (will put in pics momentarily), but I have a Kyphrixis clear coming in the mail, and I want to do a sort of ice dragon for it, with some bluish colors as the wash and then drybrush some white on the edges to make it look sort of cold/cracked/etc. Would the Tamiya Clear Blue be a good choice for that, or would it be too extreme for a clear translucent? A watered down of it? I would use the GW washes, but those I think will be WAY too powerful.


These are the ones I did with GW washes already:






Edited by bojesphob
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