Saturday, July 2, 2011

Zimmerit Tutorial(the fast way).

by Vladimir Paraskeva

Over the year I have tried a lot of different methods and techniques to make Zimmerit on model tanks and AFV's but I find them all too complicated and time consuming so I had to develop my own concept.

My technique differs from other methods because you don't need any fancy sculpting tools, putty or paste.

This also saves you a lot of time because you don't have to wait for any products to harden.

This method allows for the same realistic sculpturing as with putty but it's way more resistant and requires no additional treatment of the model. Find an old screwdriver and grind it to the necessary size. You will have to check your references to determine the correct length and width needed. You heat the tip of the screwdriver and use it to melt the plastic.

The screwdriver has proven to be my favorite sculpting tool. Because of the actual mass it stays hot longer than any sculpting tools and allows more time on your model before it has to be re-heated. Just pre-heat your chosen tool and apply the desired pattern directly onto the surface of the model. You can use what ever heat source you have close by but I tend to use a regular candlelight.

It's properly a good idea to test this technique on some scrap kit before you try to apply it to your new masterpiece. Everything you see in these pictures is are results of years of practice so be careful before you throw yourself at the task.

This method has some drawbacks too. It is really difficult to create chipping effects and battle damage on the Zimmerit. It can be done though and here two suggestions:

1. You can mark the area you want to chip with a pencil and cut it away with a sharp knife. 
2. Another way is to glue a thin piece of styrene, pre-cut to the desired shape of the area you want the chipping effect. Then use the described method to make the Zimmerit on the styrene.

This method has several advantages over the traditional ways so don't dismiss this idea too fast. All those small places and depressions between protruding parts, which normally would give any model builder head ache, are no longer a problem.

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