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After reading so many different threads on what product to use to strip paint of plastic models, I was getting a little confused. People's results even with the same chemicals seemed to vary wildly. The most common, Simple Green, is so rare in the UK as to not be an option and even with that peoples results varied.
I thought I'd run a little experiment. I'd just bought a load of marines from ebay, they were absolutely caked in paint and needed stripping. They were also old and cheap so if I melted a few I'd not be too bothered.
For my experiment I chose five different chemicals I could find around my house, well I went out an buy some ultra cheap multi surface cleaner as close as I could get to the one used by leighjt in his tutorial. Into a jar of each chemical I placed 2 or 3 miniatures, if possible something plastic and something metal
These were the results of the first attempt:
First off the brushes I used, an old toothbrush, a new stiff tooth brush and a wire brush
Pilot00 suggested alcohol, he specifically said the type you get from the chemist, but I thought I'd try Vodka anyway. As you can see it did not work in any way. Lets just call this the control, an example of what 24 hours soaking in a non melty liquid and some vigorous scrubbing can do. I should have known vodka has no effect on a space marine, its right there in the fluff!
Foaming Oven Cleaner
Problem here seemed to be, after the foam died down the model was not actually soaking, so nothing much happened. Better than the vodka, but would still take many many attempts to get most of the paint off.
Cheap Multi Surface Cleaner
This result came after two soaks and some very vigorous scrubbing. Not bad though considering its by far the cheapest chemical here. Still bits in the cracks, which is unfrotunatly exactly where I was trying to remove it from, so a spray prime won't obscure the detai.
Expensive Multi Surface Cleaner
Again, these results are after 2, actually I think 3, soaks and scrubs. I even used the wire brush, but the results were not bad, still bits stuck in the recesses, and the bits I can't easily scrub are impossible to clean. Overall no better than the cheap cleaner really
Right, I thought cream cleaner, that should do the trick. Adverts give the impression that the thicker a chemical is, the better it cleans, and this is the premier football player of cleaners, nice and thick! The results however were nothing to write home about, worse than the thin cheap cleaner anyway (and a darn sight smellier and itchier). Metal mini came up shiny though...
Then I remembered someing Lani Guy said:
I thought I'd give a close up of all the nurgle attack goodness
So my conclusions:
The chemical is no that important, as long as it is a surface cleaner. Don't stress if you can't get Simple Green, any dirt cheap cleaner will do
The more you can break up the miniature the better it will work, partly because scrubbing is easier
Surprisingly wire brushed don't damage plastic miniatures that much
Temperature is very important, we're not talking huge jumps here, just the difference between a window sill and an airing cupboard
You still need a needle or something to clean out the recesses
Leaving things overnight is always best
Space marines are always better if they smell of lemon
NOw time to see if I can scale this up and whether another dunk in warm cleaner will get the last bits of the final test models.
looks like a great guide
Well done Matus. People will be flocking to you bearing flowers and gifts for providing them with a solid guide for stripping paint! The last time I tried stripping paint I used Methylated spirits, but that took ages.
2500 points of Empire for ToXG: Points painted for month 4: 0 Points painted overall: 510
So let me get this straight:
It works much better if warm? How warm are we talking?
And are we taking the ambient temperature around the container being warm or the liquid itself being warm?
What i did mean to use is this: http://www.klim-paper.gr/images/DSC03703x.JPG
But what i said was that i havent used on plastic one,purely metalics..Also remember that vodka isnt 100% Alcohol.
Anyways it worked for me,what i get to understand from this is perhaps room conditions such as temperature might apply?If ill back into it ill post you one of my termies that i stripped recently.
Praise be to the Emperor!!
Great guide, though it was a waste of booze
Interesting about the temperature, though. I'm tempted to leave the minis in cups of Simple Green somewhere in the basement next time I run the woodstove. Maybe I'll have better results than my first lengthy soak (they were there for weeks, maybe even a few months before I remembered they were there). Hmm... some serious food for thought there.
Certainly similar things, but I think any cleaner seems to work to an extent, and supermarket own brand is usually cheapest.
(not sure if its called something different outside the UK so heres the definition). I never heated the liquid, although it did get warm, purely because the floor it was sitting on was warm. I think anything a bit above normal room temperature should work, although I get the impression that hotter is better to a point, I just don't know what the point is. I assume at some point it may have an effect on the chemical. I think just by a radiator would work well(as apposed to my window sill which was quite cold)
Can i just reiterate leighjt wrote the original tutorial that Lani Guy pointed out the effect of temperature. If anyone has some going they deserve some serious rep.
This thread is just to show that almost any cleaner works so you may as well just buy what is cheapest as well as quite how dramatic just a little temperature boost is
yeah i can't say i've ever seen an airing cupboard here in america. in fact this is the first i've ever heard of it.
So I went out and bought me some Flash.
I'll post up pics of some before and after shots, once I start doing some dudes.
However I have a question, I soaked one marine over night and then scrubbed him off this afternoon and while the regular paint came off fairly easily the primer doesn't seem to have budged, is this normal? I don't really mind because I'm just going to prime them anyways but will the primer be weakened now that it has been soaked?
Also I assume that you use the cleaner neat and don't dilute it with any water but figured I might as well double check, so yes?