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Help with paint stripping.

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This topic contains 8 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  nightbringer24 3 weeks, 6 days ago.

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  • #1872860

    nightbringer24
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    I’ve had some old Empire State Trooper swordsmen sitting on my shelf from years ago, before Age of Sigmar rolled onto the scene, where I used Army Painter sprays for the first time. The result was… less than stellar, so I just shelved them and forgot all about them, until this year when I wanted to reuse them as Swordsmen for my Grand Army of Altdorf project.

    So I went about stripping them, using my small scale sonic jewellery cleaner. I used the method that had worked for me which was hot water, bit of dettol and a few cycles in the cleaner, bit of scrubbing with a toothbrush. Now, I thought everything was going okay, even though the sprayer layer of red paint was taking a good while to come off. Yellow was coming off fine and the gunmetal, but the red layer was taking too long. So I just kept going through it all.

    And by end, when my jewellery cleaner finally gave it up (I think the motor disconnected from the base of the pan. I THINK. I can’t really tell since I can’t crack it open to look inside), I thought it was all right.

    Sadly not.

    There’s still a bit of paint on the models in certain places, mainly in the crooks of arms or in spots with a lot of the sculpted details on, and there’s also some congealed paint that’s still sitting tacky on the models even after a night in the open air. I can scrape some of it off with a hobby knife, but the bits in the details are much harder to reach.

    Has anyone else encountered this problem before, and if so, what’s the best way to deal with it? I don’t want to throw away the models since they’re still perfectly usable for me, and getting another sonic jewellery cleaner is… on the table but I’m not in a dire mood to get a new one.

    #1872902

    sundancer
    42621xp
    Cult of Games Member

    I had good results in getting old paint off with denatured alcohol but I really don’t to that that often. A stiff new toothbrush did most of the work.

    Are your minis plastic or metal? Metal mini can take some more abuse on the chemical side. Brake cleaner or something.

    #1872903

    nightbringer24
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    Denatured alcohol… never heard of that before, but I think that shows how rarely I’ve had to strip the paint of a mode.

    And they’re plastic models, which does make me cautious about getting anything majorly destructive. There’s a product called Green.. something or other, I forget the name, which I’ve heard works wonders, but there’s also Greenstuff World’s Paint Stripper, but I’m unsure at this point if it would work.

    #1872946

    orinoco
    5362xp
    Cult of Games Member

    Leave the minis in a sealed jar of undiluted Dettol and that should take the paint off.  Maybe leave them in for a few days.  Mine are usually in for months.

    The most effective method is then to scrub them in pure Dettol, but for me this then gunks up the toothbrush and splatters sticky rubbery paint everywhere while eating through any protective gloves you have on.

    My preferred method at the moment after soaking in a jar of Dettol is putting them in an ultrasonic cleaner with water and a small amount of clothes washing powder. After that the paint usually comes off with a wipe of a toothbrush and isn’t sticky.  I know your cleaner is broken so a basin of washing powder and water should work but would require more of a scrub with the toothbrush.  This will also work with your sticky models.  Cif or an alternative creme cleaner in water will also remove the stickiness of the paint, but then needs a further wash to remove all the creme cleaner from the figure.  Wear gloves and eye protection for either method.

    Sometimes a spray primer will have eaten into the plastic and the mini will be stained rather than clogged with paint.

    Hope this helps

     

    #1872947

    nightbringer24
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    (I have only just noticed there’s a reply button. D’oh!)

    But either way, that’s a very brilliant piece of advice and works well within my wheelhouse. I’ll see if I can pick up a jar or two from work along with another bottle of Dettol.

    Thanks for that, because I really want to get these models stripped fully. Though mentioning it and looking at the models  themselves, I do see what you mean about the primer staining the model. Which is something to keep in mind for a later.

    Again, thanks!

    #1873159

    nightbringer24
    Participant
    4xp

    As an update, after finishing my shift at work (which went on a bit too long), I bought a bottle of Dettol and a mason jar.

    20240414_133703

    I think that should be more than enough for my goals.

    #1873165

    captainventanus
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    My experience with the Army Painter primer sprays was that unfortunately, or fortunately depending on your perspective, they are incredibly robust and if applied properly are exceedingly difficult to strip.

    Years ago I had primed a Death Guard force and for ease had used an AP primer. As often happens a year later I wanted a new colour scheme and wanted to strip them down – normally I use Vallejo primer which comes off easily. AP did not budge and after a year or so of alternating between Dettol and virtually pure alcohol sanitiser at best I got 60% off.

    So for miniatures I remotely think I might want to strip I will not use AP again. For terrain and the occasional metal model I know I will not strip I use AP because it is so tough.

    #1873167

    nightbringer24
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    Thankfully, I’d used GW primer and only AP spray as the basecoat layer, which I had applied just that bit too thickly.

    You’re right in that it’s not bad spray. I’ve used the green sprays for tanks and orks, and not had a problem with either, but using the red just… I think it also hurt that red paints are always just a little bit thicker in acrylic paints and that can cause problems.

    I’d done an all right job getting rid of the majority of it, but what’s left is just annoying to budge, so I’m going for  the ‘soak in Dettol for a few days’ advice and see if that can help me get those last few bits off before I rebase the figures and paint them up.

    #1874681

    nightbringer24
    Participant
    4xp

    20240423_165124

    So soaking them in Dettol for a week did the trick. The yellow and red paint is gone leaving the models, though slightly still black because of @orinoco rightly saying that the primer has eaten into the plastic, this is still a better thing to work with than just what I was had to begin with.

    Definitely going to get another sonic jewellery cleaner in case I have to go through all this again, but I have a good fall back solution to work with now.

    Thanks for the help.

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