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breegull

Favorite Bones Ultra-Color paints?

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For those of you who have experience with the Bones Ultra-Color paints, are there any colors that you feel are must-have, or improvements over a similar color in the HD or even MSP lines?  Any that you find yourself using over and over again?

 

Also, do you feel that the colors in the monster and dungeon sets are unique enough to commit to buying all 6?  The monster set seems very fresh/interesting/useful to me, but is there anything that really blew you away about the colors in the dungeon set?

 

The main Bones colors I'm eyeing are the greens, because I'm forever searching for the "right" greens, and all of the utility colors like the leathers, stones, sands, and wolf grey.  I'd also love to hear about all of the "dragon" colors. Dragon Black kind of looks like Brown Liner in the painted minis I've seen; what shade of black is it really?

 

Finally, how's the consistency across the range?  I have a few HD paints that are sooo satisfying to paint with, great coverage, rich colors; and then there are a few that I can't actually use as base coats because they are too...medium-y?  Gooey?  Umber brown is one of them; love the color but I just use it to shade the crushed-walnut-shell basing material on my bases.  So I'm wondering if the Bones Ultra-Color line has a more consistent...consistency.

 

EDIT: Actually, now that I've researched specific colors a bit more, it seems like there's a lot more info on the forums than I thought, like: http://forum.reapermini.com/index.php?/topic/75313-top-20-reaper-paints/

 

I didn't realize that these colors had been out that long; I though they were all relatively new replacements for the HD line.  Now I'm wondering if they're actually any more opaque than the rest of the MSP line. Hmmm...

Edited by breegull
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The Bones HD formulations are pretty similar to the HD one. So individual colours rather than triads, and an aim of opaque coverage where possible. Limitations on opacity are related to pigments used to mix paints. So reds and yellows and such in any line are going to have less coverage because of the nature of the pigments used to mix them.*

I do find the Bones and HD reds to have good coverage, so I tend to reach for those first unless I'm being super picky about my colour choices. The HD line had some cooler reds (reds that have just a hair of blue in them visually speaking), where the Bones line has some warmer reds (they shift just a hair more to the orange side). 

The skin colours are great, particularly for more options for medium to darker skin tones. Dragon Black and Dragon White are the basic white and black of the set, so no strong colour cast in either. I'm pretty in love with Solid Black from HD so I haven't played much with Dragon Black. 

 

For a link to swatches I painted of all the Bones HD colours, which was updated to include the new boxed sets, click on the link in this thread, which I think may also give you some more opinions about great Bones paint colours to try.

http://forum.reapermini.com/index.php?/topic/78140-hd-bones-please-help-for-i-must-taste-the-rainbow/&tab=comments#comment-1657618


There may be a few colours that are a little gooy in feel, but I'm not recalling any off-hand on the level of Umber Brown. That is going to relate to the base the pigment is mixed into. The base is the formulation of the acrylic medium and other factors. Different bases can make a given pigment appear as a slightly different colour, or make it more opaque. A lot of the science of the paint mixing relates to the selection of the base that is used. Sample paints are sometimes a pigment that was mixed into the wrong base for the colour recipe that was meant to be made.

*There are more opaque red and yellow pigments. The primary ones I'm aware of are cadmium based. I think there's also a cadmium green. Cadmium pigments have two problems. One is that they're very expensive. The second is that they're toxic. The level of toxicity for end use is not as bad as something like classic vermillion, which includes mercury, but it is definitely not something that should be brush licked or rubbed on thumbs as mini painters often do. It would definitely bar Reaper from being able to label paints as non-toxic. It's even falling increasingly hard to find in traditional artist pigments as many of the workers in paint factories no longer want to work with it, since the toxicity is much more of an issue in that scenario. 

The Bones HD formulations are pretty similar to the HD one. So individual colours rather than triads, and an aim of opaque coverage where possible. Limitations on opacity are related to pigments used to mix paints. So reds and yellows and such in any line are going to have less coverage because of the nature of the pigments used to mix them.*

I do find the Bones and HD reds to have good coverage, so I tend to reach for those first unless I'm being super picky about my colour choices. The HD line had some cooler reds (reds that have just a hair of blue in them visually speaking), where the Bones line has some warmer reds (they shift just a hair more to the orange side). 

The skin colours are great, particularly for more options for medium to darker skin tones. Dragon Black and Dragon White are the basic white and black of the set, so no strong colour cast in either. I'm pretty in love with Solid Black from HD so I haven't played much with Dragon Black. 

 

For a link to swatches I painted of all the Bones HD colours, which was updated to include the new boxed sets, click on the link in this thread, which I think may also give you some more opinions about great Bones paint colours to try.

http://forum.reapermini.com/index.php?/topic/78140-hd-bones-please-help-for-i-must-taste-the-rainbow/&tab=comments#comment-1657618

 

And I'll reiterate here that it's definitely worth trying some of the  metallics if you don't love the standard Reaper metallics. Or even if you do but you want to try some even shinier paints!


There may be a few colours that are a little gooy in feel, but I'm not recalling any off-hand on the level of Umber Brown. That is going to relate to the base the pigment is mixed into. The base is the formulation of the acrylic medium and other factors. Different bases can make a given pigment appear as a slightly different colour, or make it more opaque. A lot of the science of the paint mixing relates to the selection of the base that is used. Sample paints are sometimes a pigment that was mixed into the wrong base for the colour recipe that was meant to be made.

*There are more opaque red and yellow pigments. The primary ones I'm aware of are cadmium based. I think there's also a cadmium green. Cadmium pigments have two problems. One is that they're very expensive. The second is that they're toxic. The level of toxicity for end use is not as bad as something like classic vermillion, which includes mercury, but it is definitely not something that should be brush licked or rubbed on thumbs as mini painters often do. It would definitely bar Reaper from being able to label paints as non-toxic. It's even falling increasingly hard to find in traditional artist pigments as many of the workers in paint factories no longer want to work with it, since the toxicity is much more of an issue in that scenario. 

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Wren, thanks so much for the detailed input and the link to the other thread (which, verbatim, also describes my situation. Must...experience...all the yummy colors ::D:)

 

Those swatches in your FB album are great. The only problem is that now I want nearly all those colors! Ack!!

 

Thanks also for calling out the metallics. I was wondering about those, since I ended up giving away all my standard MSP metallics. The Bones HD metallics look much more enticing.

 

Whelp, guess I will be putting together A LOT of $40 orders to get the monthly bones black mini. ::P:

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While I don't have too much experience with various metal paints, I rather like how the Bones metallics are, especially the dragon metallics (bronze, copper), blade steel, and the couple of metallics in the two new sets. 

 

They coat decently, behave well when thinned with water, and usually play well when mixed with other colours too. 

 

Actually, I really really like skeleton key, and even cursed gold. ^_^;;;;;;;

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Late reply, but I'm liking Umber Brown quite a bit for touching up my highlights. I'll lay down an edgecoat or undercoat of ochre (Army Painter Skeleton Bone) on wood, then can use Umber Brown to paint over (glaze?) the ochre until the highlight is visible but now looks like wood. The picture lighting is off, but you can see how I used Umber Brown in the before and after pictures for the wood shingles and wood board on the ground. Is there a thread to request HD paints be continued somehow? I've found browns the same color as Umber Brown, but not the consistency to paint over ochre. (fyi, The Quest Board and dog from Dog with Kennel are from Tiny Furniture, and the base from Secret Weapon Field of Screams.)

 

 

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Edited by ced1106
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Cool, thanks for the tip.  The effect looks great!  I've got a ton of furniture terrain to paint, so I'll have to give that a try.  Glazing definitely seems like a good role for my bottles of umber brown.  They're not opaque at all.

Edited by breegull
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On 1/21/2019 at 2:02 PM, Wren said:

There may be a few colours that are a little gooy in feel, but I'm not recalling any off-hand on the level of Umber Brown.

1

 

I've been meaning to ask about this now that I have the full Bones line. There are a few colors that I love but won't use because they're gooey, slick, and don't seem to self-level that well. I can usually tell I'm going to have this issue if the paint creates "strings" when I drop some onto the palette from the bottle. No amount of shaking changes the overall feel. Eldritch Purple, Dungeon Grey and Nut Brown come to mind, but there are others. Like Wren said, none to the level of Umber Brown, but enough so that using them is a pain, and I revert to something similar in old HD or Core.

 

The thing I loved about the original HD sets was the feel of the paint -- creamy, smooth, and willing to jump right off my brush without any conditioning agents. One or two coat coverage, and more importantly, *even* coverage. Bones has been much more hit and miss for me, which has been a disappointment because the colors are amazing.

 

Has anyone else experienced this? Any suggestions for a workaround? Or is it possible I've gotten some bad paints? I'm hesitant to suggest the last one, simply because Reaper quality control seems top notch.

Edited by Slatejunco
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Can you explain the "strings" behavior better?

 

I can't say I've had any issues painting with Nut Brown.  There are some paints that seem thick when they come out of the bottle, but I don't know if the paint is normally that way or if I just need to add water to them.  It's been at least a week since I used Nut Brown so I don't remember if that's one of the paints I thought was thick.  I do know that the "thick" paints I've used still thin normally with water and seem to behave no better or worse than my other paints.

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I'm not sure if I can explain with taking a picture, which would be tough, but I'll give it a shot.

 

The best I can do is this: most Reaper paints I've used will separate neatly from the bottle tip when you squeeze them onto the palette from a height of, say, half an inch or more.  They drop neatly onto my palette or wet palette. The ones that handle strangely usually drop to the palette trailing a thin "string" of gooey paint to the bottle tip. It's closer to how egg whites behave, as opposed to cream, though of course on a smaller scale. Like there's something in the base that's stickier. Maybe 1 in 4 of my Bones paints exhibit this issue to some degree.

 

No amount of shaking seems to improve this -- the pigment seems fully mixed through the medium, but the paint itself is kinda... mucousy. I've been tempted to take it to the extreme and pick up a second-hand Vortex mixer to see if that would solve the problem. Typical "guy" instinct, I guess: if it's not working, add wall current. :/

 

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I have a Typhoon vortex mixer and it works great.  I highly recommend it but I don't think it would solve your problem with these paints.  (It would, however, decrease the amount of shaking needed.)

 

Like you said, it could be the paint base is different.  Or it could be the paint has dried out a little, resulting in a thicker paint.  (I'm no expert here.)

 

Do these paints thin normally with water for you?  You might have to add a little more water than you usually would to get the desired consistency if it's a thicker paint.  (I very rarely paint with paint directly from the bottle.  I almost always thin my paint just a little, even for basecoats.  This could be why I haven't seen an issue with Nut Brown.)

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1 hour ago, Xiwo Xerase said:

I have a Typhoon vortex mixer and it works great.  I highly recommend it but I don't think it would solve your problem with these paints.  (It would, however, decrease the amount of shaking needed.)

 

Like you said, it could be the paint base is different.  Or it could be the paint has dried out a little, resulting in a thicker paint.  (I'm no expert here.)

 

Do these paints thin normally with water for you?  You might have to add a little more water than you usually would to get the desired consistency if it's a thicker paint.  (I very rarely paint with paint directly from the bottle.  I almost always thin my paint just a little, even for basecoats.  This could be why I haven't seen an issue with Nut Brown.)

 

Thickness doesn't seem to be the issue, exactly. Thinning, even slightly, tends to really exacerbate the coverage problem and "slick" feel. I've been playing around with water, flow aid, and Jen Haley's gunk (water/flow aid/slo dry) and have yet to find something that makes it behave like 90% of my Reaper paint. It's like it doesn't quite want to adhere to primer (Reaper and Vallejo) or the underlying paint layers. Brush strokes are super evident until you get several layers down. Really puzzling.

 

1 hour ago, Cyradis said:

The stringiness seems like you have semi-dried goop in the tip. 

 

It's possible. I'm not sure if that'd cause the other behaviour (slick, coverage issues, not leveling well) that I'm seeing once the paint hits the figure. I've cleared the tips with a little bead reamer that I usually use for fully dried tips. Perhaps a soak in something might clean them up properly?

 

Thanks for all the suggestions, btw. Reaper is my paint of choice, and I love how most of the colors feel and flow, so this has been bugging me.

Edited by Slatejunco
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3 hours ago, Slatejunco said:

I'm not sure if I can explain with taking a picture, which would be tough, but I'll give it a shot.

 

The best I can do is this: most Reaper paints I've used will separate neatly from the bottle tip when you squeeze them onto the palette from a height of, say, half an inch or more.  They drop neatly onto my palette or wet palette. The ones that handle strangely usually drop to the palette trailing a thin "string" of gooey paint to the bottle tip. It's closer to how egg whites behave, as opposed to cream, though of course on a smaller scale. Like there's something in the base that's stickier. Maybe 1 in 4 of my Bones paints exhibit this issue to some degree.

 

No amount of shaking seems to improve this -- the pigment seems fully mixed through the medium, but the paint itself is kinda... mucousy. I've been tempted to take it to the extreme and pick up a second-hand Vortex mixer to see if that would solve the problem. Typical "guy" instinct, I guess: if it's not working, add wall current. :/

 

 

I have had this exact same behavior from the bones HD browns.  It makes them very hard to use.

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Yep my 2 bottles of HD Umber Brown have been this way since day 1 (purchased at different times, but both during the HD clearance sale so probably from the same batch.) Has nothing to do with the bottle or with shaking. It just doesn't have the normal Reaper MSP/HD/Bones Ultra consistency. It's goopy, almost the consistency of Hershey's Syrup. And instead of being opaque it's more like a polyurethane stain in its coverage.

 

I've still found plenty of uses for it, like staining crushed-walnut basing material. But it definitely doesn't work as a normal paint.

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I have this vague memory of people saying HD Umber Brown has always been translucent but I've never used it myself.

 

I just put some Nut Brown on my wet palette and paid attention to how it came out.  There is a bit of "stringiness".  It's a more viscous paint.  I don't remember an issue painting with it but I also don't remember how many coats it took to base coat when I did Juliette's leggings.

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