Mr Surfacer

Got a question about techniques, materials or other aspects of physically building a model? This is the place to ask.

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Mr Surfacer

Post by Qrest Fourstar » Wed Oct 12, 2005 7:45 pm

Picked up some of this a year ago and am just now getting around to useing it. Question is, how do I use it? Its all in japanese. Is it water soluable? I know I brush it one(and Ive heard of people using it as a primer) but what do I clean my brushes with? I have a bottle of the 500 and a bottle of the 1000.
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Post by M3 » Wed Oct 12, 2005 8:39 pm

I have the same question, about Mr. Surfacer 1000! (My LHS just got some in, and from the way everyone talks about this stuff, it sounds like all I should have to do is wave the bottle over the model and it will magically be healed...)

Do you thin it? If so, what do you thin it with? Any specific advice?
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Post by Jonas Calhoun » Wed Oct 12, 2005 8:57 pm

I thin it with Lacquer Thinner. Don't know if anything else works, but I figured since it smells like lacquer, it'll thin with it...

I have to thin 1200 a bit to get it through my airbrush. I don't bother with the other stuff, I brush that on... (and no thinning needed)

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Post by Marco Scheloske » Thu Oct 13, 2005 2:54 am

Jonas Calhoun wrote:I don't bother with the other stuff, I brush that on... (and no thinning needed)
I use this stuff too (500 and 1000) with no thinning. In fact I guess that thinnning it will work against the thing Mr. Surfacer should do: Close small defects (holes, scratches, seams) due to its thickness (you decide: is it a thick color or a thin putty?).
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Post by Pat Amaral » Thu Oct 13, 2005 3:15 am

I remember reading someone's post here a long time ago about shooting the stuff through the airbrush. He said that it generated spiderwebs as it hit the model. I got that too the one time I tried shooting it but I don't remember what the solution was. It looked like gray cotten candy. I thought it might have been that the pressure was too high but I cut it down to just over 10psi and it was still spinning webs. Since then, I've just used a brush. This was 500 by the way.
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Post by Beacher » Thu Oct 13, 2005 8:52 am

There's a Mr. Retarder that is supposed to prevent the strings by delaying the drying of the paint. Apparently the leveling thinner is good, too.

Some guys just spray the 1000 variant, not the 500, though. I brush on the 500 to fill scratches. Perfect.

Anyway, Googling "Gunze" and "Retarder" or "Thinner" should bear fruit. Here's a link, but there are many others out there:
http://codyscoop.com/ht-paint.html

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Post by Blappy » Thu Oct 13, 2005 9:00 am

I really need to write an article for the site about this.....

Mr.Surfacer 500:

This is basically a very thin filler. It works great for filling pin holes and very minor imperfections. It can be sprayed through an airbrush but needs to be thinned a LOT. Thin it about 60% thinner to 40% Primer. I don usually spray the 500 because it gives you a bit of a grainy finish that requires a fair amount of polishing before you put anything else on the model.

I have an old jar of the 500 that is really thick and has the consistency of very fine very thin putty. It makes a great filler when you need to build something up slightly.

Mr.Surfacer 1000 & 1200

This is like an amazing primer. It goes on smooth and can give you a very good indicaton of any imperfections on your model that needs fixing before final paint.

Again when you are airbrushing this you need to thin it a lot for best results. I thin it about 70% thinner to 30% primer. I know this sounds like a lot but it will give you a very smooth almost mirror like finish and show any imperfections. You can spray this on pretty wet but be careful of runs. I have found though that even minor runs dissapear once it has dried. I have also noticed details that seem lost when the primer is wet will "reappear" once it has dried. I have actually blown around small puddles of this stuff on my model while airbrushing. I have a double action airbrush so I can stop the paint flow and use the airstream to almost dry the Mr.Surfacer as I go. I find by the time I have finished priming the model the area where I started is dry enough to do a second coat if I need to. With the primer this thin it will take a few coats to get full coverage but the results are worth it.

You can also use this to fill really tine pinholes in resin kits or really fine seams at wing joints on aircraft and such.

Thinning:

When you are thinning any Mr.Colour product ALWAYS use the Mr.Color thinner. I have used laquer thinner and it works but you don't get the same kind of smooth finish on the 1000 and 1200 that you do with their thiner. Your finish will be grainy and need polishing no matter what.

When you are brushing on Mr.SUrfacer regular laquer thinner is fine for thinning and cleaning your brushes and airbrush. I use this to thin little amounts of my really thick 500 so it flows a bit better if needed but when the regular 500 is too thin.

The main thing is USE this stuff. play with it. Its the best way to understand it and become proficient with it. Don't let it sit on your shelf for a year thinking "Ahh some day I will use that...." When you get home open the jar that night and put it on something. brush it on some old styrene, use a toothpick and make different sized dots with it. Experiment and have some fun with it. The next day see what it looks like dried. Its the only way you will truly understand a product.

OK I'm done now. :D
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Post by woozle » Thu Oct 13, 2005 9:27 am

Any comparisons to 'sandable' primer?
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Post by Blappy » Thu Oct 13, 2005 9:54 am

Woozle wrote:Any comparisons to 'sandable' primer?
No. Sandable primer goes on about 20 times thicker the Mr.Surfacer. Sandable Primer is great for huge projects with a lack of detail. But for most things it will obscure and soften fine crisp detail.
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Post by Beacher » Thu Oct 13, 2005 4:39 pm

Blappy wrote:I really need to write an article for the site about this.....
I think you just did. :D

Thanks for the tips! :thumbsup:

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Post by woozle » Thu Oct 13, 2005 5:19 pm

Here's a review that my good friend, Google, spit out at me
http://www.swannysmodels.com/Surfacer.html
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Post by TER-OR » Thu Oct 13, 2005 9:31 pm

Swanny is da dude.

I like using it at wingroots etc. Paint it in place, then use alcohol on a cotton swab to remove excess.


For thin gaps or scratches, there's nothing better than Mr. Surfacer from Gunze Sangyo. It's available in 500, 1000 and 1200 - decreasing particle size. Think of it as a thick lacquer paint with plastic. It's dissovled in a lacquer thinner of some sort. You paint it over the area and let it dry. Then you can sand flush or use a Q-tip and alcohol. The alcohol takes a while, but once you get the hang of it there's no better way to take care of wing roots etc.
http://www.modelingmadness.com/reviews/ ... slepv1.htm
Look partway down, with the construction pictures. Around the canopy you'll see the Mr. Surfacer blending the area. Go well beyond the gap - the idea is not to see the gap at all, just a smooth region of gray. The best is to paint it all the way to an existing panel line, so the whole area is smooth. It's also available in spraycans which is great for models on which you're using a lot of resin and metal bits, it coats everything. On my Ventura in progress you'll see Mr. Surfacer filling imperfections on the fuselage and completely painting the wings (with the spraycan).
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Post by M3 » Sun Nov 20, 2005 11:08 pm

Okay, so now we've got it in the LHS in both the bottle and the rattlecan (both 500 and 1000)- any difference in effectiveness? Any warnings/advice on the rattlecan version (I imagine it's probably easier to cover large areas)?
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Post by TER-OR » Tue Nov 22, 2005 9:42 pm

The rattlecan 1000 is probably the best thing to ever happen to resin kits. It makes a silky-smooth surface, oh so nice. It's expensive but boy is it good.

I'd fix all surface flaws except fine sanding marks then hit it with the rattle-1000. Don't use it to fix seams or such - it will show those like scars.

The 500 can be used for rougher models, and will go pretty smooth. It might obscure fine details though, and the 1000 won't.
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Post by woozle » Sat Dec 24, 2005 5:05 pm

If you brush it on, is it 'self leveling'? or will it really show brush strokes?
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Post by Marco Scheloske » Mon Dec 26, 2005 4:55 pm

woozle wrote:If you brush it on, is it 'self leveling'? or will it really show brush strokes?
I only used it in small areas, no brush strokes there.
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Post by TER-OR » Mon Dec 26, 2005 6:44 pm

Just flow it on with a brush. If you have defined areas like panel lines you won't see the edge. If you want to buff it later, that will completely any hint of brush strokes - which are possible with anything.

Alcohol and a cotton swab are great at "feathering" the edges down to the substrate.
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Post by REL » Mon Mar 20, 2006 1:26 pm

I saw this thread not too long ago so I decided to order some of this stuff. It's the best primer I've ever seen. It truly will fill in unwanted scratches but leave surface detail intact, how it does it I have no idea. You can also put it on just about as thick as you want but when it dries it leaves nice crisp detail behind. After sanding it leaves a glass smooth surface.

It's amazing stuff. Thanks for the info.

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Post by SGluedMyFingers » Sat Apr 15, 2006 11:12 am

Does anyone have any comments about using Mr. Color Thinner, Leveling Thinner and Retarder (all related to Airbrushing Mr. Surfacer)?

I just finished a two day, multiligual (bablefish, i'm no linquist) internet search looking for even a rough english interpretation of the instructions for Mr. surfacer products and related thinners etc... Never found a japanese-english interpretation, but I think I learned a few things. I also think I may have warped my brain - anyone who's ever tried translating japanese-english knows what I'm talking about. :wasted: I thought I'd run a few of these by you guys to see if you could verify/deny.

The Mr. Color leveling thinner is really just Mr. Color Thinner with some Mr. Retarder in it?

Using a little Mr. Retarder is just as effective as using more Mr. Color Thinner? In other words, you can substitute a small amount of retarder instead of thinner? This one doesn't sound right to me.

A common mixture percentage that I kept seeing was: 60% surfacer x 35% thinner x 5% retarder (or maybe just 40% leveling thinner?). Comments? This mixture was usually referred to regarding Mr. Surfacer 1000 - any comments on adjusting the mixture for 500 and 1200?

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Post by SGluedMyFingers » Sat Apr 15, 2006 11:13 am

double post :oops:

Well, since I already double posted.... I think I'll PM naoto and see if he'll interpret some of this for us - it may be a chore though.

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Post by Blappy » Sat Apr 15, 2006 11:18 am

When I spray Mr Surfacer I thin it about 70% thinner to 30% Mr.Surfacer

I have never used the retarder but I'm pretty sure it just slows curing time. The Leveler will make the paint flow better for brush (shudder!) painting.

I don't think the retarder or leveler really have much use for airbrushing. They are both if you are brush painting.

I have done testing that also proved Mr.Color Thinner is the best (By far!) thinner for the Mr. Color line of Laquers and Surfacers.
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Post by SGluedMyFingers » Sat Apr 15, 2006 12:14 pm

Blappy wrote:I have never used the retarder but I'm pretty sure it just slows curing time...

I have done testing that also proved Mr.Color Thinner is the best (By far!) thinner for the Mr. Color line of Laquers and Surfacers.
I heard (i think above and somewhere else) that the retarder helps with the spider web issue. I had a minor problem with that a few days ago - but I was trying to spray 500. It helped a lot to reduce the spraying distance, but I'd like more control. I just purchased some retarder and leveling thinner - scared to use it, of course :shock: That stuff's expensive. Plus, I'm a big advocate of reading directions. I PM'd naoto. Maybe he'll help. I think we'd all like to know what's on those bottles - curious minds...

I wholeheartedly agree with using Mr. Color thinner with Mr. Surfacer. For that matter, I use MM thinners with MM paints and PS thinners with PS paints (that's about all I use for paint). It just makes sense to me. Now I'll use just about anything for brush and AB cleanup.
Blappy wrote:When I spray Mr Surfacer I thin it about 70% thinner to 30% Mr.Surfacer
That's for 1200 and 1000? I know most don't AB the 500. But it they sell it in a can, why not? I guess that's really what I'm trying to accomplish here - airbrushing the 500.

I pretty much bought the full line of surfacer products and thinners, ect... (no spray bombs though) so after a little experimentation, I'll know. But only fools rush in. I'm going to ask a few questions before I start spraying this stuff with abandon - it's just too expensive and hard to get.

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Post by DasPhule » Sat Apr 15, 2006 1:29 pm

The retarder is a must for all of the Gunze enamels (or whatever they are). Their thinner helps, too. FOr cleaning I use lacquer thinner (cheaper). I couldn't get rid of the webbing until I used the retarder, now I never have the problem anymore. Proper cleaning of the surface to be painted is a must, though. Gunze paints definetly don't like finger oil or release agents, they curdle up right around them when I've had this problem.

I use about 50% retarder, 10% thinner, 40% color and it sprays beautifully. I love the way all of the Gunze paints really shrink down and hug the plastic as they dry, and how hard the finish is once fully set up. I just wish there was a local store that carried them, or that the SM store would sell them (hint hint, come on, at least carry the Mr. Surfacer!!!).

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Post by Blappy » Sat Apr 15, 2006 1:41 pm

I'm sure the thinning is the same for the MS 500.

I have never had the spider webbing issue you guys are talking about. Maybe it's a result of not enough thinner?

As for other brands of paints I use Laquer thinner to thin every thing else. Works like a charm on Model Master Enamels and Tamiya Acrylics. :D The 99% Isopropyl Alcohol works great for Tamiya Acrylics too.
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Post by Jonas Calhoun » Sat Apr 15, 2006 5:12 pm

I've been using Lacquer thinner on the 1200, and so far, it's gone down pretty smoothly. I'd like to try the Mr. Color thinner, is it the same thinner that is sold for the acrylics? (Smells like alchohol?) Or is it a different thinner? Checking my bottle, it says "Mr. Hobby Mr. Color Thinner 110". I think the 110 refers to the size of the bottle though...

Spiderwebs--I noticed they went away with more thinning.

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Post by Blappy » Sat Apr 15, 2006 10:56 pm

The Mr.Color thinner for Mr.Surfacer smells nothing like alcohol.
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Post by SGluedMyFingers » Sat Apr 15, 2006 11:11 pm

Blappy wrote:The Mr.Color thinner for Mr.Surfacer smells nothing like alcohol.
...more like laquer thinner, but not quite. The retarder has almost no smell at all.

The "110" does refer to ml. I have the 50. I think the leveling thinner I have is 110. They both smell pretty much the same.

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Post by Jonas Calhoun » Sun Apr 16, 2006 1:04 am

Thanks guys...I didn't think so, but wanted to check.

Too many Mr. products to keep track. I think the stuff for acrylics all has 'Mr. Hobby' somewhere in the label though...

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Post by Perotis » Thu Apr 27, 2006 3:08 pm

The onlything i've used mr sufacer for is on some of my WWII tanks. I dab it on and keep adding/dabbing oit to give a rough texture that makes the turrerts look like cast metal rather than the smooth plastic.
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Post by Treadhead » Wed Aug 02, 2006 10:13 am

woozle wrote:If you brush it on, is it 'self leveling'? or will it really show brush strokes?
I don't know about the Surfacecer 1000, but the 500 grade is not self-leveling. It kinda piles on and leaves strokes. What you need to do is let it cure (treat it as if it were putty) then sand it.

To me this stuff is a must have. I swear by it :)
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