Sunday, May 5, 2013

Applying your modeling skills around the house

Sometimes I get this notion that I can extend my sweet modeling skills to other parts of my life. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t.

A year ago I painted my family room. It’s in the lower level of the house with one of those wainscoting deals that jut out from the wall (to accommodate the foundation). It’s white, and I set out to paint the walls above it a deep red. I set out on this task one weekend with great confidence. “Sheet,” I told myself, “If I can mask an anti-glare panel on a 1/72 P-47, surely this will be easy.”

Fast-forward six hours when I pulled away the 3M tape. I was horrified to find that the red paint had seeped under the tape in many locations, and it looked horrible. I realized what I’d done wrong -- not burnishing down the tap quite hard enough and brushing the paint toward the tape rather than away from it. Oh well, live and learn. See for yourself.

Fast-forward a year. I recently purchased a nice print of an F-100F on eBay and started looking for a suitable matt and frame. It’s an odd size, and I couldn’t find something off-the-shelf that it would fit. I found a nice frame that had a fine red line embedded within the frame that picked up the colors in the print, but at $55 it was a little too expensive for the $8 print. I found a similar frame for under $10 one aisle over, so I bought it. It didn’t have the fine red line of the more expensive frame, but I figured I could do it myself.

And so I did. As you can see, some careful masking, and airbrush, and Tamiya red did the trick.

What did I learn? I think the lesson is that the smaller the project, the greater the chance of success. Maybe I should build models of 1/700 scale aircraft.

P.S. My next household project? Repainting an old, inexpensive dresser. Stay tuned.

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