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Effective Masking

Effective Masking

Nothing ruins a paint job more than having paint bleed under your masks. Here’s a technique that gives professional results. Start with thin (1/4-inch) vinyl masking tape to outline your painting area. Now instead of using newspaper or brown wrapping paper, use aluminum foil and attach it to the vinyl tape with 1/2 inch masking tape. This works great and the flexible aluminum foil can be easily positioned around curved sections, and it completely impervious to paint soaking though it.

Updated: March 9, 2019 — March 9, 2019
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  1. One reason paint bleeds under tape is due to spraying too wet along the taped edge on the first pass. The first coat of paint there should be fairly light and then let that dry. After you make a paint seal along that edge, then you can lay down a heavier coat. And, burnishing the tape before painting will help make a better seal to the model. You don’t want to burnish that masking tape too heavy or you may mar the balsa. A credit card can be used as the burnisher without applying too much pressure. Burnish = to rub or polish. As well, buy paper made especially for painting as newspaper is not well suited for that purpose. Not to mention the ink will transfer to your fingers and then to the model. Use fresh tape (the blue or green type) for the job at hand. It is more pliable than old hard tape. After all, you are painting a $2000 model so what’s another $5 for tape? The manilla masking tape is good for many things, but not masking. It will actually pull the paint and or primer off the model. Not recommended. The aluminum foil is a fine idea however, never thought of that one.

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