Photo paper for card models?

Discussion in 'Tools of the Trade' started by BARX2, Jan 6, 2007.

  1. BARX2

    BARX2 Member

    I have a bunch of photo paper that came with a couple of printers I bought. I don't print digital photos, so I thought I might use it for models. I think some models would look great in high gloss, i.e., autos. So what can I expect when using photo paper? Will I ruin the gloss if I use a little water to clean glue off the glued edges? I'm pretty careful with the glue, but I like to clean off any that remains. I think the paper is about 65 pounds.
  2. 72BMWR75/5

    72BMWR75/5 Member

    I've used photo paper for a couple of things. With small parts, it's hard to fold/bend. The coating can crack when bent. I used super glue. It bonds to the coating better than tacky glue.
    I made a little 'lucky bamboo' in a pot. It looked really good with the glossy coating, but the paper was difficult to work with. Some things would look really good on photo paper. There's a Japanese sight with free downloads of trout models. I think they would look great. But, they're small and I had trouble with the parts. I'm going to blow them up 2X and try again.
  3. 72BMWR75/5

    72BMWR75/5 Member


    Almost forgot. You pretty much have to score on the backside or you rip up the coating.
    You may have to color in folds if the coating cracks.
  4. Grizz

    Grizz Member

    I started the Jaguar XJ6 model with Kodak everyday picture glossy paper as an experiment. The paper is 165gms (not sure what the pound equivalent is). I have found two main issues;
    1. The glue (PVA) seems to have trouble taking to the glossy side and will pull away. The actual gloss coating seems to separate from the paper.
    2. The paper I used is too thin and has warped (I'm still coming to terms with laminating) and the scores all cut through the ink.

    Apart from that the gloss looks fantastic for a car skin. I think it is definately worth perservering with gloss paper, just have to find the right combination.

  5. Grizz

    Grizz Member

    I just simulated cleaning glue off the Kodak everyday picture paper and the colour all came off so definately don't try with this paper. Although I beleive there are waterproof inks available for some printers? I also read in another thread that after the model is sprayed with a matt varnish (and prior to building) the glue will clean off quite well (wish I could remember where I read that).

  6. pfontaine2

    pfontaine2 New Member

    In case you haven't tried it, Staples makes a store-brand matte photo paper, 61 lb, 10 mil/ 230g that is just dynamite for architectural models. It can be had for about $15.00 for 50 sheets and works great with my Canon Pixma printer.

  7. ekuth

    ekuth Active Member

    I've tried photo paper but without good results. White glue can't stick it- only CA (superglue) seems to work. The color rubs off really easy and it cracks like nuts.

    On the whole, I can't recommend it at all. :(
  8. BARX2

    BARX2 Member

    Thanks for the comments. I may try one model on photo paper just to see how it does with the Espon. It has pigment ink. We have some gloss paper at work - 11" X 17", 110 pound. I guess it's for presentations, but nobody uses it. Not only that, but the color laser ink doesn't stick to it - it just smears and messes up the rollers! I think I'll cut some down to 8.5" X 11" and bring it home and see how it does in the inkjet.
  9. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    Ekuth, it works with white glue IF you scrape the gloss off the tabs AND scrape the backing off where the tabs glue too - way too much work in my opinion but then again I am rather lazy.... :)
  10. CardStalker

    CardStalker Member

    See my thread under tips, I show how to use clear coat. Photo paper is hard to work with. I will be adding more tips to this thread as I go. I have had some good results and I'm going to pass on what I learn.
  11. pfontaine2

    pfontaine2 New Member

    I neglected to mention that the Staples photo paper is matte and requires absolutely no prepping. Use it right out of the box. It's certainly much better than the regular card stock I used to buy.

  12. cgutzmer

    cgutzmer Guest

    agreed! matte paper is excellent. I used it for along time uintil I got turned on to 65 lb super bright
  13. I would not recomend it either, the normal glue's don't hold,colouring the edges is difficult and it tends to fall appart after a while, and sanding down each and every single tab is a hell of a job.
    Cardstalkers method looks very effective.
    I use acrylic varnish from a spray-can after I finished a model..
  14. CardStalker

    CardStalker Member

    Just so everyone knows, I'll be adding other tips to the clear coat thread as I go. Working on a build right now with clear coat and will be posting it after it is complete. Will have lots of pics to go with it.
  15. Mark_1984

    Mark_1984 Guest

    I'm using photo paper for my model of Aru (see the Cartoon & Anime section for the build thread.) It's a bit of a pain, as several people warned me. The coating has to be scraped off, and then normal glue will take OK. I printed it on a laser printer at work, and the colour doesn't run but the surface scratches easily. It seems to score & bend OK for a larger model, but I suspect that you won't get creases sharp enough for a smaller model.


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