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Devilleader501

Laying down big decals

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I was just wondering if you guys have any special way of laying down huge tail decals on aircraft. I just got done with a nightmare of a decal for my F-8E Crusader and need to know if you all have any special tricks about doing it. Do you cut the decal in half and work one half at a time? I use future to lay mine down but just spent a half hour on one decal trying to get it to lay down correctly and still managed to tear it a bit. I still have the other side to go and am not looking forward to it. Any suggestions are greatly appreciated thanks. JOSH

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I think much depends on the decals, if these ar egood ones there is no need to cut them.

You will need to use lot of water, bith on the model and on the decal.

Water gives you lot of time to position the decal as you want.

Don't use any solvent of Future on large decals until perfectly positioned or you will not have the time to work with it.

Don't warry about air bubbles, you will always be able to remove them once the decal is in position but before it drys completely.

Hope this helps.

PAolo

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For very large decals, cutting them up along existing demarcation lines and then applying them one at a time sure works for me. Also, I would not be using Future to settle large decals down because you usually need extra time to get things just right and Future dries and sticks too fast. Go with a good base coat of Future, then use the traditional Microset and Microsol (or equivalent) solutions.

Another tip. Once you've got the decal positioned properly and somewhat dry enough so that it won't move, cut along panel lines, etc. with a very sharp #11 knife and then use more Microsol to get the decal to "melt" into the panel line depression. Do the same thing with rivets, bubbles and a needle so that everything looks painted on, rather than a bed sheet covering up all the natural detail underneath. I've had great luck doing this with decals that have dried for days, so there's always lots of time to get them to conform to underlying detail. Once you're happy and everything is dry and silver free, spray another coat of Future to seal them in to prepare them for weathering washes, etc.

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Cutting up larger pieces definitely helps. What's also important is you may potentially need to thicken up the decals if they are too thin and/or soft. You can do this by brushing on a layer of liquid decal film.

Cheers,

Terry

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Following up on Chuck's answer, one of the best blades for this is a blade from a disposable razor. Get a Bic SINGLE blade razor (orange and white kind) and use a utility knife or the like to carefully pry it apart. It is very thin and very sharp. I generally just carefully hold it in my hands but locking pliers, hemostats or needle holders would also work.

Best blade ever for this purpose.

Bob

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I cut large decals along lines where a seam, if any, wouldn't be noticeable. With regards to future, I dip my decals in warm water first, take the off the backing, then dip them in future. I then just touch them to a paper towel to get the drip off then apply. If you absorb too much Future with the paper towel, it will get sticky much quicker. For extremely large decals, I make sure I mark where it needs to go with small pencil dots or something like that. I usually get about 15-20 seconds to position with this method and that's plenty. I'll gently press into any corners/contours with the tip of my slant-nose tweezers but the Future takes care of most settling. I've applied some decals on compound curves and at the moment said "that looks like crap" and came back a few hours after and saw that it turned out pretty good once the Future set.

I don't know if I've said anything others haven't but I hope I've offered some sort of insight :)

-Justin

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Further to Justin's comments, I read of this method a while ago. Having built up a nice collection over the years of many setting/softening potions, and found them all more or less equally useless, I was keen to try something else. Sceptical about applying decals with wet Future/Kleer, I tried it with a couple of spare Aeromaster decs and some surplus plastic.

I was expecting it all to end in a sticky mess, but nooo...

There is some brief positioning time (all I need), air bubbles can be gently removed with a soft, wet brush and best of all, the end product shows no sign of Future at all after a shot of clear acrylic varnish. Decals settle down beautifully into/over the finest surface detail, carrier film disappears completely (a first for me!), there is absolutely no silvering and it all looks pretty much painted on -the goal for this process, after all.

In all, my best decalling outcome so far; so I'm converted! :thumbsup:

Edited by ChippyWho

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I'd still use the Future, you just need to dilute it, not use it straight.

For a full tail sized decal I will leave it on the backing paper and slide it onto the tail aligning it as you go, a brush loaded with water will be handy if you need to float it a bit to reposition, it's really not to difficult as long as your decal is aligned straight from the start.

Curt

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I have always used Future to set my decals with great results. My only thing is that this decal was so big that it took about a half hour to get all of the wrinkles and bubbles out from under the decal. Normally the future sets quickly but this time it took a while. I think I had problems because the decal should have been cut smaller. When I lay small decals down the same way it only takes me a minute or so to get them to lay down like I want. As far as demarcation line is that a clear part of the decal carrier film between colors? I'm using VF-194 decals for an F-8E so any suggestions on where the decal should be cut would be greatly appreciated. Thanks JOSH

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I have just completed a 1/32nd Revell Hawk for the colorful aircraft G/B with markings for a black demonstration aircraft. There is a HUGE roundel decal covering the bottom of the aircraft and the entire fin is covered by a large decal too. I have had bad experience with Future (not enough time to position the decal) and plain water (puddles up on the kit surface) so I tried adding a few drops of washing up liquid to the water and voila, a perfect thin layer of water and enough time to move the decal into position. I used Gunze setting solution and it worked perfectly.

Pictures in the Group Build section.

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Yessir, here is but one answer to your question, and you don't have to go too far to find it. Go back to ARC's home page, and go into the Gallery. Click on "Jet Aircraft Model Gallery." Scroll down and click on "F-102 Delta Dagger." Go down to the fourth entry. It's a 1/72 scale Hasegawa F-102A. The modeler is Bernd Korte. Read the article on the build. The tail section is a whole decal. When you get to the painting section, Bernd tells how he finished the tail with the Superscale decals that he used. This is not the answer, but just one modeler's way of getting rid of that "nightmare" that plagues us all from time to time. (or should I say, model to model!) Good Luck!!!

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Go back to ARC's home page, and go into the Gallery. Click on "Jet Aircraft Model Gallery." Scroll down and click on "F-102 Delta Dagger." Go down to the fourth entry. It's a 1/72 scale Hasegawa F-102A. The modeler is Bernd Korte.

I can sum that up in two words..."Click Here"..........

Curt

Edited by Netz

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I clear coat with Future and let it cure well. Then I use a bunch of water and float the decal into place. Once in place I start to squeegee the water out from under the decal with a large paint brush, then use Microsol or Solvaset to get it to conform. I've had pretty good luck doing this with lozenge decals (whole wing) on German WW1 aircraft and on Rally cars.

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:D, German WW1 lozenge decals on rally cars Aaron? lol. Just being a smart a**e mate, that's my oblique sense of humour coming out.

:cheers:,

Ross.

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Hey Ross, duck :shoot:

No lozenge covered rally cars, but that does give me some ideas for the what if GB. Maybe I'll build one of the new Airfix 109s with a lozenge scheme, it is actually pretty good camoflage, at least on a model bench anyway.

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I dom't use Future for decal setting...I use Mother Natures Setting Solution. Soak the decals and when ready to place on the model I rub on a generous amount of saliva, float the decal then use a 1/4" flat sable brush to gently massage the liquid from under the decal.

Works well on large decals..see the AirShowModels on my website http://www.barneysairforce.com

Barney

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