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Aug 13, 2008, 06:32 PM
Mmm, tugs...
patmat2350's Avatar
Thread OP

Bertram 38 Offshore Racer Display Model (was Shiny boats)

What's the state of the art for painting shiny, graphics-heavy race boats (or planes)? Covered here or anywhere else? Sorry, if so, I must have ignored it-- most everything I do is Dulcoted!
Last edited by patmat2350; Sep 02, 2008 at 02:52 PM.
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Aug 13, 2008, 07:23 PM
woodybob's Avatar
Callie Graphics makes masks for painting, rather than sticking, graphics to your model.
Aug 13, 2008, 08:06 PM
Mmm, tugs...
patmat2350's Avatar
Thread OP
Yes, I was thinking about that... but I'm also wondering what folks are using for paints. Automotive paints must be nice, but are a lot to buy for one model. I'd prefer to use a small gun (detail gun), no spray cans!
And I'm always amazed by details like outlined lettering, and getting that perfectly smooth and level finish, even over masked graphics... polishing and clearcoats must be the trick.
Aug 13, 2008, 09:57 PM
Registered User
Hummmmm. glossy... what is Pat working on these days?

Automotive with clear coat is the way to go if you want super shiny... totally doable with a small "touch up" gun...
Aug 13, 2008, 10:59 PM
Registered User
What I've done in the past is used Krylon clear coat. I would do two or three coats of Krylon. Then let the model sit and cure for a week or so. Wet sand first with 600 followed by 800 then 1200 and finish with 2000. Then polish with Novak or similar. Be careful on the corners else you'll rub thru the paint.

I've done the same thing with Duplicolor clear and have gotten great results.
Aug 14, 2008, 07:58 AM
apprentice shipwright
John Pilot's Avatar

Paint guns?

I've been using spray cans so far. Can't say I'm 100% happy with them . Any recommendations on good spray guns for a boat 4 - 6 ft long?
Aug 14, 2008, 08:22 AM
Mmm, tugs...
patmat2350's Avatar
Thread OP
I've heard that inexpensive detail guns work just fine:

Hobby air brushes are challenged to provide uniform coverage on these larger areas.
Aug 14, 2008, 08:47 AM
woodybob's Avatar
I use a Badger Model 400 Detail/Touch-Up Gun, now a discontinued item. Good coverage, easy to maintain.

As far as what paints, I would think that paint designed for model use would be best as the pigments are generally pulverized to make the paint "thinner". Clear coating will level everything out. Then follow RC-Archers suggestions.
Last edited by woodybob; Aug 14, 2008 at 09:27 AM.
Aug 14, 2008, 10:19 AM
Grumpa Tom
Kmot's Avatar
I started using this gun last year.

It's awesome. Well made, sprays great, easy to clean, etc. For $10 bucks it is like getting it for free.
Aug 16, 2008, 03:09 PM
Mmm, tugs...
patmat2350's Avatar
Thread OP

Not so shiny boat...

OK, here's the project... restore this old display model and make it look like the owner's 1:1 boat, a Bertram 38 Competition (a rare 1970's racer, the first I'm told with a kevlar hull). Apparently a few models were made for the original teams. This one is in pretty bad shape- hand painted, carved wood details, held together with hot melt and window caulk. Will be interesting...

Question: I don't know if the fiberglass model is a special from the Bertram factory, or if maybe it was ever offered by a model company? Anyone ever seen one before?
Last edited by patmat2350; Aug 16, 2008 at 03:27 PM.
Aug 16, 2008, 06:10 PM
3 Blades to the Wind
Shaun Hendricks's Avatar
I have the same gun Tom has. It works just fine and is very adjustable. I also use my Paasche airbrush. It depends on how large of an item I'm working on.

You can get some seriously nice automotive paints in small mixes for very little money but I actually found some really good paints at the hobby shop. Lexan car body paints are available in just about every finish color, and style. You'll need to clear coat them for marine use though.

Metallics make for the flashiest paint jobs but pearl coats also look really nice.
Aug 16, 2008, 08:43 PM
Registered User
Neat project, Pat!

Never knew Bertram had a race boat... A few of their smaller sportfishing boats around here... good quality stuff...
Aug 23, 2008, 11:05 AM
Mmm, tugs...
patmat2350's Avatar
Thread OP

There will be putty...

I parted deck from hull on the model, as they were joined with globs of RTV and not fitting at all well. After studying things a bit, I realized that the deck could never be made to fit correctly, so I just built a new top out of wood.

It's a display model, so weight is no concern... 1/4" ply makes the formers, 1/8" ply does the skin, and I built a real cockpit in place of the original's mere shallow depression.

The woodwork is pretty nice, as the ply gives nice sweeping surfaces... but I still have a little filling and fairing to do. So I'll give West 410 fairing filler a try... hope it works as advertised, providing an easy to sand putty. We'll see!
Aug 23, 2008, 05:07 PM
Registered User
I too have the same gun as Kmot and Shaun, for the money it's a bargain and it does work quite well. I've used it alot and it has held up really well!
Aug 23, 2008, 08:58 PM
Registered User
I paid more than $1.99 for the same clamps!!! They really work great though!

Gobs of RTV holding the deck on originally???

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