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Tuesday, March 7, 2017

White night

If you can believe this, I believe it has been nearly a year since I fired up the airbrush. That was one prolonged mojo drought. Some of it was due to lingering health issues (cardiac problems that manifest as extreme fatigue), some that I have a near pathological fear of screwing up airbrush work. But tonight, I gritted my teeth and determined to get out to the garage and do some work or stop declaring that my main hobby was 1:72 aircraft modelling.

I’m sure this is not uncommon amongst worldwide modellers. But it is less defensible when you have been retired for a couple of years. It’s not like there are millions of entries in my social calendar that are preventing model work. But sometimes you just don’t feel like doing it. Sometimes there is an important game on, you decide you would rather read, and sometimes the irresistible call of the nap is overwhelming (post-work, just because I CAN)! But more disturbing is allowing my personal fear of airbrushing failure to prevent progress.

So I decided that tonight I was going to get some paint sprayed no matter how badly I screwed it up. I reassembled the airbrush, mixed the paint – which of course had settled over the last year into pigment and carrier. And discovered that all of my lacquer thinner had evaporated.

This caused a bit of a quandary. At best I could only use one color, since there would be no chance to flush the airbrush. And the paint I chose had to be fairly thin so that it wouldn’t orange peel the paint surface. Luckily the main color I was planning on, white, was at a sprayable thickness. So off I went. I repaired some sanding damage on the AModel Beech Starship, did some patching on the civilian Noorduyn Norseman, and added areas of white paint to both a Eurofighter (a what-if Red Arrows version) and Bae Hawk (a demo with elaborate corporate markings).

Cleaning was of course a problem. I cleaned out everything I could touch with paper towels, but that doesn’t substitute for back spraying thinner. Still, it was the best I can do until I can make a visit to Lowe’s tomorrow and buy another large can of lacquer thinner.

Still, this represents progress and I wanted to document it. There are still a few 2016 models that need to have their final photos and write-ups completed and posted. One, a Eurofighter special scheme, suffered a landing gear problem when a box managed to land on it during the Christmas holidays. So some repair work first.

Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll take a look at 2017 plans, ongoing construction progress, catching up with completions, and some new kits I’ve picked up recently. 


  1. good..well done.. this airbrush 'fear' thing is completely irrational when looked at objectively. You can manipulate an airbrush as well as the next man. That 'fear' of 'screwing up' becomes a self-fulling prophecy. In reality you are programming your mind on this negative goal! We are what we think about, so think successful outcomes!

  2. Agree 100%. Nothing rational about it. But no less real for that. It's something I definitely struggle with (both on the airbrush and construction side to be honest) but am working diligently to overcome.

  3. ..yes I know ...sorry about the above, daughter doing her finals - psychology exams!

  4. No offense taken, since I thoroughly agree with you!