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Modelling Glossary T - V
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 Post subject: Modelling Glossary T - V
PostPosted: April 14th, 2011, 9:11 pm 

An aircraft where inadequate noseweight has been provided, causing it to lean back and rest on its under-wing wheels and tail, rather than under-wing and nose wheels.

A product that lowers the viscosity of a substance, usually an enamel or acrylic paint, to change its application properties. Thinner is used notably for airbrushing a paint, to thin it down and enable it to be atomised. See also the Humbrol products section for information on the Enamel Thinners product.

A property of paint whereby it has a gelled structure when undisturbed but when stirred is quite mobile. This is caused by weak chemical bonds that set up in the paint when it is static, but are easily broken down when stirred. Products are usually made thixotropic to aid application. Tomato ketchup is an everyday example of a thixotropic product.

Through dry
When a paint film is dry throughout, not just at the surface. At this stage all the solvent has left the film and the paint can be re-coated without problem. Note that the curing process may still be occurring and the paint film will still not necessarily have achieved its full hard dry level.

Mixing different colours or colourants to produce another. The old Humbrol Interblend system was a type of tinting system.

That Looks About Right...good enough, without recourse to calipers, etc..

See Mould.

Levels of harmful ingredients in paint such as solvents and heavy metals including lead and chrome.

A modeller's basic tool, tweezers are particularly useful for manoeuvring small parts into position.


'Cod' German, meaning to add a lot of extra detail to a model, to the nth degree.

A first coat of paint applied before applying the finishing colour, or topcoat. The undercoat is usually coarser than the topcoat, to give good adhesion to the substrate below and the paint being applied over the top. It also brings a model back to a single colour, which can be useful if parts have been moulded separately and are slightly different in colour. It can be also advisable to use an undercoat if you think there may be excessive amounts of release agent on a model kit, although cleaning the plastic thoroughly with warm water and soap is always best. Undercoats are most commonly grey, since grey is easy to hide with most topcoat colours.

"Metallic colours will work better if a compatable undercoat is used. For example;
White under silver.
Red under copper.
Yellow under gold, etc..

These are not hard and fast rules and may be experimented with to produce varying shades in the metal coat.

Also, use a white base coat for dayglo colours. " - DHDrover

Sometimes, for whatever reason, not enough liquid plastic fills the Mould or Tool, so that, when the mould is opened and the sprue removed, a piece or two is malformed. This is described as being undershot. This is a relatively rare occurence in modern kits, from large modelling companies, but is more common in cheap copy-kits, where qc is not as rigourous.


Vac form
Short for 'vacuum forming' (being both a noun and a verb). Vac forming is a process that involves applying heat and suction to a sheet of plastic to mould it into a specific shape. Commonly seen in everyday life applications such as point of sale fixtures in shops, model kits can also be vacuum formed, a prime difference being that the modeller is required to cut the shapes out of the plastic, rather than detach them from a sprue as is the case with injection moulded kits. Although the same level of detail cannot be reproduced with a vac forming as an injection mould, the tooling costs are comparatively low and shorter production runs are practical.

A product that seals paint or other substrates for protection, giving either a matt, satin or gloss finish. Humbrol Mattcote, Satincote and Glosscote are all examples.

Adequate air movement, needed particularly when using solvent-based products such as enamel paints in confined areas and when spraying any type of paint. As well as having suitable ventilation you should take regular breaks to avoid over-exposure to solvent fumes.

An expression of how thick or free-flowing a paint is. Higher viscosity means thicker, lower viscosity means more free-flowing. More viscous paints will generally cover better as they don't spread as far.

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