Gaijin Gunpla

Work on the Heavy Arms Custom I was asked to build for someone has progressed well.  I put a photo of the completed torso up on the Gaijin Gunpla Facebook page for everyone to see and the reaction was positive. I’ll post it here so people don’t have to navigate away from this page to see it.

The majority of the torso I painted with Tamiya’s Blue and that lighter blue color is what Tamiya calls Coral Blue. It is quite vibrant and before I laid it down I put down a coat of a similar but darker color to make it a little less bright. The torso was actually the easy part. The sections that are painted Coral Blue are separate parts so there is no need to mask or anything like that. However, the same cannot be said for the shoulders (and the small parts on the skirt)! The shoulders are just one piece and to get the two colors on there I will need to do some kind of masking. While I have plenty of experience with masking using tape I thought for this build I would try a different method. Here are the parts in question.

You can see the Coral Blue has been applied.

To mask those very thin lines I thought I would go with a method that had been suggested to me before but I have not yet tried. Sticky-tac.

I filled the recess with Sticky-tac making it as clean as possible and once all parts were Sticky-taced (that’s a new verb I just created) I sprayed the Blue.

So far so good, I thought.


However, when it came time to remove the Sticky-tac it didn’t come off cleanly but instead left residue inside the recess I had masked.



Before I can evaluate how well this method worked I had to remove all the Sticky-Tac which turned out to be quite difficult. I even had to bring in a special tool; a cotton swab.

But this isn’t your regular cotton swab. (Actually, I don’t know what a normal cotton swab is for those reading this. I am basing my statement off my personal experiences with cotton swabs and their stick made of paper). This cotton swab’s stick is plastic! By cutting at an angle I gave myself two pointed edges with which to scrape away at the residue in the recess.

With the residue removed things looked much cleaner.

But, you know what? I wasn’t satisfied. Certain areas had too much Sticky-tac and you can see that some of the Coral Blue is showing on the outside edge of the recess. So I sanded the parts down and will do this again.

I will report back soon once I’ve overcome this particular, and last, part of the commissioned work.

13 Responses so far.

  1. Good luck Syd. With your determination, it’ll come out a killer heavyarms

  2. Sei says:

    With things like Sticky tac, you dab with extra tac to remove. Your way was ingenious, but quite capable of ruining the paint underneath if you’re not careful. Dabbing lightly with a ball of tac removes all residue.

    Also, perhaps shape the putty first using a sculpting tool, to match it up with the recesses? It holds it’s shape rather well, it won’t spill over again unless you press it down. That should solve your overspill issue if done with some care.

  3. Josh says:

    Reverse Wash Technique? Maybe give that a go.

  4. Tb says:

    If tou have a steady hand, may I suggest that you use a masking liquid?

    • syd says:

      I had thought about that, but because I’ve never tried it before I thought it best not to have my first experience with it be on a commission kit. How is it to use?

      • Tb says:

        Quite good, and quite straightforward, actually. You apply it to the area you want and the paint won’t stick to it. The key is to get the edges sharp. A piece of masking tape could to used to help achieve that. As you know, painters use it a lot in more complex compositions.

        I am not sure how it will react (or not) to lacquer-based paints, though, but it should work fine with water-based paints, like acrylic.

      • syd says:

        Sweet, thanks for the info!

  5. Sambo says:

    Such a bummer when you’re pioneering a new technique! No sweat, you’ll nail it bud.

  6. faltion says:

    I’ve found that when using sticky-tac and have that residue left over I just use some other stick-tac and rub it across the stuff I am trying to remove, and eventually it adheres to the bigger stick-tac blob. I hope that helps.

  7. Kiko says:

    Just got an idea. Don’t know if this idea will work though. Re-do the sticky-tac technique then paint. After the paint dries, use a design knife and slice/trace the recess then slowly remove the tac. That, I think, will reduce the residue.

  8. syd says:

    Thanks for the advice, everyone. I’m now better prepared when I try something like this again

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