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GW Washes vs Reaper Washes

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So, the topic came up in a recent RTB episode where Justin said it was very common for people who use Reaper paints to use GW washes.  For me, I use them just because that's what everyone else seemed to do.  I've only been painting about a year so I just went with the crowd when I started.  This brings me to my question:

 

What is it about GW washes over Reaper's washes that so many people like?

 

I know, I should just buy them and try them out to form my own opinion but it seems still to buy more washes when I have the GW ones that are still 95% full.

 

Thanks.

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Nowadays I make my own washes.

As for this, I have both GW and Reaper Washes, I see little difference.

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Yeah, I just have a few for convenience sake.  I have Nuln Oil, Agrax Earthshade, Saraphim Sepia, and Flesh Wash.  Any other color I mix.  I see no sense in having a huge tub of an orange wash.  For how often I'd use it I'll just make one quick.

 

When I use up these maybe I'll just get the reaper ones instead since I prefer the dropper bottles.

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If you're careful, you can move paints from pots to dropper bottles.  I have a friend who did this with P3 paints when he was playing WarMachine.

 

Following up on our conversation on Discord, I've got some Bones mummy figures drying now.

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I used to like GW washes, but have recently been using Army Painter Strong Tone, for....almost everything. Their washes tint things though, so I find I have to paint a lighter midtone than I normally would when using them.

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7 minutes ago, Xiwo Xerase said:

If you're careful, you can move paints from pots to dropper bottles.  I have a friend who did this with P3 paints when he was playing WarMachine.

 

Following up on our conversation on Discord, I've got some Bones mummy figures drying now.

 

Yeah, I looked into that.  I'm kind of lazy but moving washes to droppers should be super easy as they are so liquid.  I just need to order the bottles.  

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For me, it's mainly that my FLGS has GW contrasts and does not carry Reaper washes (yet). I also hate the pot design. 
Can confirm that GW Flesh Tearers Red (crimson), Snakebite Leather (yellowish brown), and Gore-Grunta Fur (dark reddish-brown) are everything you could dream of in a thin pigmented medium. I've been less impressed with the blues, purples, and greens that I've got so far; especially at the price. I've got some Nuln Oil and Seraphim Sepia and use them frequently, but don't see any real superiority there as opposed to other brands of wash, or homemade. 

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I have Shyish Purple, Orc Flesh, Snakebite Leather.. and apparently, I slipped and picked up a bucket of Drakenhof Nightshade. 

Oops.

 

I like the coverage on all three contrasts. Still not sure if I approve of the washes; Nuln Oil is interesting, but .. eh, and Agrax Earthshade is... well .. brown. It doesn't seem to be any better or worse than my Secret Weapon Armor or Stone washes (maybe wants less shaking, but.. eh, shaking). 

I still need to pick up a red contrast... next time we stage an assault on the FLGS, I spose. 

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From left to right: Reaper MSP 09254 Brown Wash, Citadel Agrax Earthshade, Army Painter Strong Tone Quickshade

 

2118928192_WashComparisonFront.jpg.722a2888cc6d55f728023410f518c11a.jpg569690373_WashComparisonBack.jpg.4ab0b6ca1b30de91c23d53b3b111302f.jpg

 

The minis are basecoated in Reaper MSP 09143 Yellowed Ivory and their integrated bases with Reaper MSP Bones 09432 Desert Sand.  The eyes for each mini were painted in using clear brights so I could tell them apart.  The washes were applied on top and pools were wicked away.  The wicking is not guaranteed to have been done equally.

 

As seen on the palette (third row of wells), Reaper MSP Brown Wash, Army Painter Strong Tone Quick Shade, and Citadel Agrax Earthshade:

Palette.jpg.aa413ff85f45dfdde1fcb68fdd99f461.jpg

 

Compared to the other two, Reaper Brown Wash is thicker (or, at least, my bottle is) than the other two.  It is also not as soft a wash, so it doesn't flow into the crevices of the figure as well.  Brown Wash appears lighter on the palette but I don't see a significant difference in the picture.

 

Both the Army Painter and Citadel washes flow into the crevices and settle there, although some paint is still left on top.  The AP wash doesn't appear to be as dark in the crevices as the Citadel wash but that may be a side effect of the wicking.  Perhaps wicking (except for the worst pools) isn't appropriate for the AP wash (especially since the bottled Strong Tone quick shade is descended from the AP quick shade tins, which are intended for dipping miniatures).

 

I believe the Citadel wash looks the best out of the three.

 

 

If you want a ready-made wash without having to worry about thinning paint (or the wash), the AP and Citadel washes win, hands down.  It's not surprising people recommend these.  You could get similar behavior by using a paint wash or by thinning the Reaper wash but these aren't as quick or beginner-friendly.

 

However, the Reaper washes win on versatility.  Since they're thicker (and Reaper MSP 9324 Steel Wash is thicker than the Brown Wash), you can use them for other tasks.  For example, see the TMM on my painted version of 03867: Aletheia Edair, Duelist:

 

1074569518_2020021303867Offset66.jpg.c0478290cb6708dad7cf09bb56f022dd.jpg

 

When painting the TMM, I used Brown Wash for the mid-shadows on the gold metals and Steel Wash on the mid-shadows of the steel/silver metals.  (Is this supposed to work?  I don't know but I think it did.)

 

I suspect it would be more difficult to do this with the AP or Citadel washes because they're much thinner.  If you can get them to behave and stay in place (which might be a challenge by itself), you'd need more layers to build the opacity.

Edited by Xiwo Xerase
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I have both GW and Reaper washes.

I also have some Vallejo washes.

And I've also made my own.

 

My own are by far more versatile.  I have made a Nuln Oil and Agrax Earthshade equivalent that are far more concentrated than GW's, so I can dilute it to what I want.  I can add more medium to make it behave more like paint, or airbrush medium to make it more wash-y.  I find Reapers a little thicker than GW's.

 

However, use what you can find.  There's only one semi-local store to me that carries Reaper paints, and that stock was pretty sparse the last time I went.  Most stores have GW.  I have enough experimental urge within me to buy a bunch of inks and mediums and make my own,

 

 

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maybe its just me.  The main difference I see between the GW and Reaper washes is that the GW washes are much more matte than the others.  from Reaper I still get a satin finish, this means I have a sheen I don't want on my mini.  it goes away with a matte sealer but it makes it more difficult for me to paint because I usually highlight over the shade (backwards I know but its how I roll)

 

So GW washes are the flattest I have ever seen.  Reaper is okay with a slightly satin finish (which is weird because the liners, when thinned are not satin) and Army painter always gives me a gloss finish I cant stand.  This is only one point of reference... Mine.

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