How to make decal film "disappear"

Discussion in 'Tips & Tricks' started by Ken, Apr 16, 2007.

  1. Ken

    Ken New Member

    Question for everyone. I am new to this forum and also relatively new to painting brass models. One difficulty I am having is figuring out how to make the decal film disappear when finishing the model. I always apply the decals to a gloss surface, and then after the decals are properly applied and fully settled in (no air bubbles) I have been applying a flat coat surface. It works OK, but some of the decal film is still visable. I have seen some fantastic models, not pad printed, where all of the decal film is virtually invisible and was wondering if anyone could clue me in to what the technique is. Thanks much
  2. Gary S.

    Gary S. Senior Member

    No answers from the gang?

    I can't offer the perfect solution, but here are some thoughts. First, try to cut the decal film as close to the edge of the printing as you can. This will help hide the edge. Now, on small printing such as car data, you can't very well cut that close to all the little letters, so what I do is

    1. use MicroSol in accordance with the instructions to get the decal to "dissolve" onto the model

    2. Spray on a coat or two of dullcote after the decal is thoroughly dry.

    3. Use some weathering to help disguise it, although sometimes the weathering makes it show up even more:curse:

    4. Another shot of dullcote after the weathering is applied

    I'm no expert on this, but grab some old junker cars, add some decals, and experiment with what I mentioned.

    And if anyone else has tips, I want to hear them too!
  3. myltlpny

    myltlpny Member

    I'll second Gary. Microsol or some other decal setting solution will burn the decal into the finish. Apply the decal to the gloss finish like you're doing, then after it's dry apply the microsol. Let it dry again. When the model is completely decaled try applying another coat of clear and then duclote over that. The clear does a better job of hiding the edge of the decal.
  4. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

    One of the tips I got from our decal clinic at the last setup was to look at the thickness of the decal film. Some film is thicker (and therefore harder) to hide than others. Unfortunately, I cannot remember brand names... :(

    For the thicker stuff, you can try to "undercut" the decal when you first remove it from the backing. Rather than cut the decal with scissors or a "vertical" blade, angle the blade under the decal at 45°. This will remove some of the thickness, and help disguise the edge.

    I have not tried it yet, but it seems reasonable...! ;) :D

  5. TomPM

    TomPM Another Fried Egg Fan

    What I have done with success is after the decal is dry spray the car/loco with Glosscoat. After that dries I then hit it with a spray of Dullcoat.
  6. Ken

    Ken New Member

    Thanks to all for your responses. I'll try the ideas out
  7. hobokid

    hobokid thebull

    i am also fairly new into modeling, i was having the same problem with decal edges being to visable. then i found testors decalset, it works relatively well, i apply the decal to gloss surface,let dry, then with a brush apply some decal set, covering the entire decal,let dry,then apply some dullcoat and its a wrap.
  8. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    geez, I was gonna reply to this thread, but all my ideas have already been suggested!

  9. jbaakko

    jbaakko Active Member

    Gloss paints, then decal, then cover with Walthers Solvaset has always worked for me. I've had some VERY minor edge showing on my own printed decals, but...
  10. Ralph

    Ralph's for fun!

    I've used Dulcoat but still have seen some noticeable edges. Tom, your idea of using glosscoat first seems like a good one!

Share This Page