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Gunze Aqueous Hobby Color (Acrylic) paints - How good are they?

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Now that I have my own horror stories I can share about MM Acryl I am, once again, in search of a paint line that would complement some of my Tamiya colors. I've heard a lot about Gunze paints and, for the most part, how good they generally are. The thing is, people who I've come across seem to use the lacquer-based Mr. Color version and not so much the acrylic Aqueous Hobby Color one. Since I'm looking for an acrylic line and not solvent based paints (as is Mr. Color), can anyone please describe your experiences withe Gunze's Aqueous Hobby Color paints? I know they are pretty hard to find here in the US but, if they are good, I'll try to find a source.

Any feedback will be appreciated.

Rob

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Gunze is hard to get these days but I am looking at Life Color. From what I have read and seen they are a good paint. I may have to order a couple of bottles to try. As for Gunze I love the stuff. Greater colour range then Tamiya and they will thin with the Tamiya thinners. But as I have said Gunze is hard to get now

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hey topgun.Ive been using gunze aqueous and mr.color for around a year now and they are now my paint of choice {and ive tried them all!}. They both flow very well and ive had no problems with clogging etc.the main reason i use aqueous instead of tamiya now is that theyre alot tougher {stronger when masking},mr.color is pretty much indestructable.Both dry really fast to.worth mentioning that pretty much all of them have a satin/gloss finish so buy the gunze flat additive for any flat finishes.If you want to try them, i get mine on ebay from china

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Great paint--nigh on to impossible to find in the US. It seems to be closest in formulation to Tamiya acrylics, which airbrush beautifully and are much easier to get a hold of here.

I'm looking at Vallejo as another possible alternative once my Polly Scale stockpile runs out.

cheers

Old Blind Dog

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Thanks for the responses, guys!

Gunze is hard to get these days but I am looking at Life Color. From what I have read and seen they are a good paint. I may have to order a couple of bottles to try. As for Gunze I love the stuff. Greater colour range then Tamiya and they will thin with the Tamiya thinners. But as I have said Gunze is hard to get now

I've tried Life Color and although generally good, and with a really good range of colors, I find them not very durable and hard to spray depending on the paint.

hey topgun.Ive been using gunze aqueous and mr.color for around a year now and they are now my paint of choice {and ive tried them all!}. They both flow very well and ive had no problems with clogging etc.the main reason i use aqueous instead of tamiya now is that theyre alot tougher {stronger when masking},mr.color is pretty much indestructable.Both dry really fast to.worth mentioning that pretty much all of them have a satin/gloss finish so buy the gunze flat additive for any flat finishes.If you want to try them, i get mine on ebay from china

Man, that's good to know. Although I've been able to find Mr. Color paints in my LHS I don't really want to get them as they are lacquer based and they smell pretty strongly. I'm shooting for a 'less smelly' acrylic line like the Aqueous one so I'm hoping I can find a source. I've looked on ebay but didn't see anyone selling the Aqueous line. Thanks!

Great paint--nigh on to impossible to find in the US. It seems to be closest in formulation to Tamiya acrylics, which airbrush beautifully and are much easier to get a hold of here.

I'm looking at Vallejo as another possible alternative once my Polly Scale stockpile runs out.

Indeed, Tamiya paints do airbrush nicely but their color range leaves a lot to be desired. I don't mind mixing a few colors to get what I need from them but to have to do it all the time, for practically every base coat, it gets a bit irritating. I also thought about Vallejo (Model Air) but since I'd have to order them via the Web anyway I thought why not try a better paint. If these Gunze Acrylics prove to be really difficult to obtain, I think I may have to go with Vallejo as well.

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN

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Gunze Acrylics are my favorite paints, very easy to spry, fast drying, perfectly smooth finish, very fine pigments etc...

But to work well they need to by thinned with Mr. Thinner that is a laquer based thinner (or with Tamiya Laquer), so they are not really Acrylics!!!

Someone use alcohol or Tamiya acrylic thinner with Gunza but quality is not the same.

On the bad side: it is almost impossible to brush with Gunze paints so you will need another brand of paints to paint seats and smaller details.

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I thin them with water and they airbrush fine. I have switched to using acrylics only and will try to get as many Gunze as possible

They are much tougher wearing than Tamiya paints and have a finer pigment.

They are probably the best paint I have used (the other contender being MM enamel)

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Gunze Acrylics are my favorite paints, very easy to spry, fast drying, perfectly smooth finish, very fine pigments etc...

But to work well they need to by thinned with Mr. Thinner that is a laquer based thinner (or with Tamiya Laquer), so they are not really Acrylics!!!

Someone use alcohol or Tamiya acrylic thinner with Gunza but quality is not the same.

On the bad side: it is almost impossible to brush with Gunze paints so you will need another brand of paints to paint seats and smaller details.

Thanks, Paolo. Yeah, I've heard they're a bit difficult to hand brush. For a while now though I've been using Vallejo Model Color for hand brushing. Really nice paints.

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN

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My paint of choice (Gunze Aqueous), I originally thinned them with 90% alcohol, but have found that Tamiya's acrylic thinner, X-20A, works just fine. As an experiment I did try the Gunze Mr Color thinner once but failed to notice any difference (other than the smell :P )

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Okay, here's a question...Would you pay $5 per jar of Gunze Aqueous?

I found a source (Lucky Models) for them but at $5 a pop I don't know if I should go for it. Anywhere I can get them cheaper?

Rob

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Over half of the $5 is shipping. Definitely not worth just buying one bottle. However, if you buy several bottles, the per unit shipping costs will come down.

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that is a problem for Gunze. Can somebody tell me reason for that. I know it's calculated with weight, but if you check Tamiya surface primer, I think shipping is way lower, and it's 40ml bottle(bigger than gunze)?

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that is a problem for Gunze. Can somebody tell me reason for that. I know it's calculated with weight, but if you check Tamiya surface primer, I think shipping is way lower, and it's 40ml bottle(bigger than gunze)?

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I believe that if you get more than one bottle of paint the cost of shipping from Lucky goes down. I bought some from Great Models a while back but they have a $10:00 minimum.

I do love my Gunze paints though.

Cheers, Christian

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Gunze Acrylics are my favorite paints, very easy to spry, fast drying, perfectly smooth finish, very fine pigments etc...

But to work well they need to by thinned with Mr. Thinner that is a laquer based thinner (or with Tamiya Laquer), so they are not really Acrylics!!!

Someone use alcohol or Tamiya acrylic thinner with Gunza but quality is not the same.

On the bad side: it is almost impossible to brush with Gunze paints so you will need another brand of paints to paint seats and smaller details.

Paolo,

You are really surprising me there.

I've been using Gunze acrylics for years and always thinned them with alcohol or water, with various results.

Lately I've been using the Mr Thinner from Gunze, with much better results indeed.

Yet there are 2 Mr Thinners: 1 for Acrylics and 1 for Enamels.

I know it since I bought the wrong one at first. :rolleyes:

And the Mr Thinner for Acrylics works really well with Gunze Acrylics or Tamiya Acrylics, but not with Hiumbrol Enamels for example.

Hence my surprise. :unsure:

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Gunze Acrylics are my favorite paints, very easy to spry, fast drying, perfectly smooth finish, very fine pigments etc...

But to work well they need to by thinned with Mr. Thinner that is a laquer based thinner (or with Tamiya Laquer), so they are not really Acrylics!!!

Someone use alcohol or Tamiya acrylic thinner with Gunza but quality is not the same.

On the bad side: it is almost impossible to brush with Gunze paints so you will need another brand of paints to paint seats and smaller details.

I kinda agree, it sounds like you're using the Mr.Color (Enamel) and not the Aqueous Hobby Color (acrylic).

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Anything Gunze does is of the highest quality. You can't go wrong with their products.

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Gunze acrylics are possibly the best acrylics on the market. They adhere well, pretty durable, and have a low chance of clogging the airbrush.

gunze_rack.jpg

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My paint of choice (Gunze Aqueous), I originally thinned them with 90% alcohol, but have found that Tamiya's acrylic thinner, X-20A, works just fine. As an experiment I did try the Gunze Mr Color thinner once but failed to notice any difference (other than the smell :P )

Same here- EXCELLENT airbrushing results with TAmiya's X-20 thinnner. I actually brew my own equivalent of X-20 nowdays with 91% ISO Alchohol and retarder.

On rare occasions, I'll use Mr. Color Thinner with Retarder- helps with some lighter colors like White and Yellow.

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gunze_rack.jpg

Nice Rack! :woot.gif:

I also like the old Pactra Acrylics on the floor- I used to love those when they were on the market.

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Thank you all for your responses. They really help with making up my mind about trying them. I'll be ordering a few bottles from Lucky and see if the shipping decreases a bit.

Now, should I get the thinner recommended for this paint (Mr. Hobby Color thinner), or should I just use water/alcohol? I have some of the Mr. Color Leveling thinner but the smell of it (as it was designed for the Mr. Color range) will defeat the purpose of me getting these paints.

Rob

Edited by TOPGUN

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Thank you all for your responses. They really help with making up my mind about trying them. I'll be ordering a few bottles from Lucky and see if the shipping decreases a bit.

Now, should I get the thinner recommended for this paint (Mr. Hobby Color thinner), or should I just use water/alcohol? I have some of the Mr. Color Leveling thinner but the smell of it (as it was designed for the Mr. Color range) will defeat the purpose of me getting these paints.

Rob

As you say, Mr Color Thinner is designed for the Gunze acrylic solvent lacquer paints and will introduce the odor you were trying to avoid in the first place. The Gunze Aqueous Hobby Color is also an acrylic lacquer but designed to be alcohol compatible (in fact I believe alcohol is also a component in the Mr Color Thinner which is why it also works with the Aqueous paint)

When I first atarted using Gunze Aqueous, I used 90% or 91% isopropyl alcohol. I find the Tamiya X-20A (A for acrylic) thinner works just fine, and is readily available whereas the Gunze thinner is not.

If you are placing an order for the paint, I would also add a bottle of Gunze's thinner so you at least have a basis for comparison when you try other alternatives such as Tamiya or your own brew.

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This is resurrecting an old thread... but many people seem to be throwing around the word "acrylic" and improperly associating it with "water-based."

The term "acrylic" doesn't have anything to do with what you use to thin the paint.

This is leading to some confusion about the 2 types of Gunze acrylic paints that are available.

Gunze makes 2 different acrylic paints under the Mr. Hobby line-up for hobbiests:

MR. COLOR

* Solvent-based (lacquer) acrylic paint

* Cannot be thinned with water or alcohol

* Thins with Mr. Color Thinner, Mr. Color Leveling Thinner, or other lacquer thinners too

AQUEOUS HOBBY COLOR

* Water/alcohol-based acrylic paint

* Thins with water, alcohol, Windex, etc. etc. etc.

And here is probably the best and most comprehensive explanation of Gunze acrylic paints:

http://s362974870.onlinehome.us/forums/air/index.php?showtopic=220902&view=findpost&p=2102514

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