Alkyd Binders: Fix pigments, mix own weathering liquids, create SFX! Enjoy long open times!
Alkyds are slow curing, long open times binders that equal slow-paced and hassle-free weathering. Recommended for meticulous modellers. Alkyds can be used as classic pigment fixers or be mixed with pigments in order to create custom weathering liquids and pastes. The binders come in three variants each suited for particular weathering and finishing tasks.
Fix pigments, mix own weathering liquids and pastes with long open times!
FIX PIGMENTS BY CAPILLARY ACTION
PIGMENT WASH FOR ACCUMULATED DIRT
WET FX THAT CAN BE MODIFIED UP TO 6H
HEAVY SPATTER WET FINISH
MIX ALKYD PASTE AND CREATE MUD DEPOSITS
CREATE LIGHT SPATTER IN ANY COLOUR
MUD DEPOSITS ON UPPER HULL (ALKYD PASTE)
HEAVY SPATTER EASILY ATTAINABLE
ANY KIND OF SPILLAGE ATTAINABLE
Typical Alkyd binders applications, you will easily find many more uses yourself! Please check out product FAQ for tips and guidelines.
Take it easy!
Pigments applied with VMS alkyds are "live" several hours after the solvent is long gone - they appear dry but can be manipulated. This allows you to remove portions of pigment to create unique SFX or make corrections. The beauty of Alkyds is this: you get to manipulate apparently "dry" pigment layers, then leave them to actually cure and gain durability. Once cured a pigment job will look exactly like the moment you stopped working on it and have resistance of pigment jobs created with classic fixers!
Can be reversed but only during open time!
Alkyds are reversible within their open times, which differ for each binder type. You will have up to 9h to remove or make corrections while working with "standard" type which is the most flexible of alkyds. "Palette extender" and "gloss action" have open times of 6 and 3h respectively. Please check product summaries to make sure how long your binder remains "live".
Create custom weathering liquids and pastes!
VMS Alkyds are so much more than simple pigment fixers, they are devised to work as fully fledged weathering liquid/paste binders with appropriate flow and viscosity. Now YOU decide the colour, flow, opacity and texture - every aspect of a weathering liquid. Benefit from long open times while exercising your favourite techniques!
Simply mix your pigments with ENML 2.0 binders and a fresh batch of weathering liquid or pase is ready!
Alkyd Binders capability roundup! (standard type)
Alkyd binder standard is best for general weathering, from basic fixing to mixing your own weathering liquids. It gives pigment jobs matt finish. Apart from "on vehicle" presentations we also depicted binders capabilities the same way we present our pigments - on AFV wheels. Use this as a reference point to be able to better pair your spot-on pigment with particular binder type and achieve desired result.
MIX OWN WEATHERING
FIX BY CAPILLARY
APPLY ALKYD PASTES
APPLY ALKYD PASTES
CREATE LIGHT SPATTER
APPLY PIGMENT WASHES
CREATE HEAVY SPATTER
EVEN COVERAGE WITH WEATHERING LIQUID
EVEN COVERAGE +
DUSTING ON TOP
PIGMENT WASH &
TEX PIGMENT CAPILLARY
Alkyd Binders capability roundup! (palette extender type)
Alkyd "palette extender" allows you to introduce moderate gloss and colour variation. The thickness and flow are adjusted for creating very realistic wet and damp effects. Apart from "on vehicle" presentations we also depicted binders capabilities the same way we present our pigments - on AFV wheels. Use this as a reference point to be able to better pair your spot-on pigment with particular binder type and achieve desired result.
MIX LOW OPACITY
LIVE UP TO 6H
POINT WET EFFECT
LOW OPACITY GLAZE
WASH + POINT WET EFFECT
LOW OPACITY GLAZE
POINT WET EFFECT
Alkyd Binders capability roundup! (gloss action type)
Alkyd "gloss action" binder has the highest solids amount meaning it seals pigment layers very well and doesn't lose gloss easily when mixed with pigments. If you need to create thick glistening mud or other types of high gloss wet effects and irreversible acrylic resins are not an option this binder is the one to go with. Apart from "on vehicle" presentations we also depicted binders capabilities the same way we present our pigments - on AFV wheels. Use this as a reference point to be able to better pair your spot-on pigment with particular binder type and achieve desired result.
MIX HIGH OPACITY
GLAZES AND PASTES
HIGH OPACITY GLAZE
HIGH OPACITY GLAZE
HIGH OPACITY GLAZE
HIGH OPACITY GLAZE
TEX PIGMENT HEAVY
MUD 100% OPAQUE
TEX PIGMENT HEAVY MUD
100% OPAQUE PARTIAL
Alkyd binders video tutorial PART 1
Alkyd binders video tutorial PART 2
Alkyd binders video tutorial PART 3
Alkyd binders video tutorial PART 4
Alkyd binders video tutorial WET MUD
What agent do I need to reverse pigment jobs created with Alkyds?
You may reverse Alkyds within their open time 9h for "standard" type, 6h for "colour extender" and 3h for "gloss action" type. To remove pigment jobs use either VMS Universal weathering carrier "standard" or "light" type. "Standard" carrier type works faster but can be used only over acrylic base coats. "Light" type works a bit slower but can be used over both enamel and acrylic base coats. Please check out Universal weathering carrier product FAQ to learn more.
How to produce even coverage effect?
“Even coverage” is a starting point for many other techniques + it imitates fine dry mud very well on it's own. Give it a try to familiarise yourself with VMS binders and step up to more advanced techniques. Mix your pigment with Alkyd binders “standard” type. Apply resulting weathering liquid with a brush as if painting. Evaporate solvent using hair drier to see how the pigment job will look like. Pigment can be manipulated within 9h, you can use a brush, a cotton bud or just your fingers.
How do I create my own weathering liquid?
Mix your spot-on pigments or equivalent (low quality pigments produce bad weathering liquids which spread badly) with the Alkyd binders "standard" type in a jar or tray. Basic mixing ratio is 1:1 but you can add more pigments for stronger liquid with better coverage capability. By changing the pigment amount you can adjust the liquid to your needs and style!
How to create pigment wash and do partial removal?
Procedure is as for even coverage. Apply a layer of pigment using Alkyd binders “standard” type. Use hair drier. Once a layer is dry use UNIVERSAL weathering carrier to liquefy it again and remove portions of pigment. Remove as much pigment as you need leaving it in places you deem appropriate. Doing it this way, using binders first, introducing carrier (thinner) later ensures your pigment job is permanent, classic washes with just the thinner are not durable.
How to create dry mud accumulation (alkyd paste deposits)?
Mix your textured pigments with Alkyd binders "standard" type to create thick paste. Paste should be so mixed that it doesn't bleed binders. Apply it with a brush all over the target area for instance a tank road wheel or lower hull. Absolute zero finesse is required here, just plaster the whole area with paste, we mean it! Next use hair drier to get rid of the solvent, apply heat for 1-2 minutes depending on the pigment layer's thickness - the pigment job should appear dry. Now is when the fun begins, use your brush or a toothpick to remove portions of pigment paste - simply scrape the excessive pigments away leaving cool looking deposits, the paste will give in very easily to manipulation. You will have up to 9h to do the removal, so take it easy! No solvent is required - you work with "dry" paste and dry tools. When you have removed all the pigments you wanted and are happy with the result you can rub the pigment-free areas with a cotton bud soaked with Universal weathering carrier to create more contrast. The next day the deposits you created will gain full durability and can be further enhanced if need be. Please look at the pictures below to get the idea of the alkyd procedure.
APPLY PASTE AND
SCRAPE DRY PASTE WITH
How and when to fix my pigments using capillary action?
You will want to take advantage of capillary action whenever you want to produce accumulated mud or dirt. This technique benefits greatly from using textured pigments. To make things more effective start by applying a thin layer of Alkyd binders "standard" type wherever you want the pigment job to appear. Next sprinkle textured pigments over the wet binders layer so that they stick to it. Now is the time for the proper capillary action technique. Dispense some binder into a tray and dip a precision brush in it. Apply drops of binders directly over the pigments you sprinkled earlier, allow the drops to slide from the bristle and penetrate the pigment structures. You can sprinkle more pigment any time during this process. When you are done you can apply heat to get rid of the solvent. Pigments will regain original colours within a few hours once the rest of the solvent is gone.
How to create wet effects? (coloured i.e. with use of pigments, high gloss finish on road wheels and suspension)
Mix your pigments with VMS Alkyd "gloss action" type binders. Apply the resulting paste (textured pigments) or liquid (zero tex pigments). The pigment job will turn matt as the pigments absorb the binders the first time you mix and apply them. Don't worry about the matt finish it's supposed to work this way. Let the pigment job breathe for about 3h for a better sealed and more durable layer. Next step is to apply a thin coat of Alkyd binders "gloss action" over the pigment job you just created in order to enhance the gloss. You can add multiple layers for a "dripping wet" effect. You can apply "gloss action" all over or just locally for more variation.
How to create point wet (wet accent) effects?
For damp (satin finish ) point effect use Alkyd “colour extender”. Simply apply the binders with a precision brush wherever you need them. For more glossy wet effects please use Alkyd “gloss action” binders.
What are low and high opacity wet glazes and how to create them?
Wet glazes are glossy fluids with low to moderate pigment percentage. Contrarily to gloss paints glazes offer a certain amount of transparency so as to show underlying coats. This means more authentic and better looking results. To prepare a low opacity glaze with mix a tiny bit (5%) of pigment with Alkyd “palette extender” type binder and then spread it evenly over the target part. To create high opacity glaze mix a bit more pigment (10-15% depending ho much opacity is your goal – more pigment equals higher coverage) with Alkyd “gloss action” type binders and spread a thin layer over the target part. While making glazes always use minimal pigment amounts to retain gloss! If you overdose pigments and glazes turn matt you can always apply a thin coat of pure binders over to increase gloss, but best glazes are just one layer.
How to create partial wet glaze effect?
Follow the glaze procedure as described above to create low or high opacity glaze first. To remove the gloss where needed use Universal weathering carrier, use damp brush to wipe excessive binders, use hair drier to check the result. If still too glossy do some more wiping, you may introduce a bit pigment along with the carrier to reduce gloss better. To create a smooth transition from gloss to matt, allow the carrier to flow freely between the both areas, soak it up with your brush (without wiping) and finally use hair drier to check out the result.
What do you mean by maximising dusting results and how do I do that?
Dusting is the basic way of working with pigments. You simply rub pigments with the brush wherever you want it to appear. It involves no binders. It often happens that you want the dusted pigments to have higher opacity and better coverage but their capabilities are limited as there are no binders involved. For instance you want to model a vehicle that has been rolling in the deserts. You dust some pigment over the wheels and hull but the base coat is still showing too much, the coverage is poor, raw pigment is not enough. To remedy that you need to mix your pigments with the Alkyd binders "standard" type and apply resulting weathering liquid with a brush - just paint the target area with pigments for what we call "even coverage". Apply heat so that the solvent is gone and wait 24h for the pigment job to gain durability. Next do the dusting over this pigment coat - you will be amazed by how good and homogeneous the coverage is. Such pigment job will have maximum opacity and vibrancy. We refer to it as "even coverage + dusting on top" - check out the capability round-up.
How to create streaking on my vehicle's hull?
Mix your pigment with Alkyd "standard" type binders. Apply the resulting weathering liquid wherever you want the streaking to appear. No finesse is needed here, simply paint some irregular dot-like shapes here and there they will disappear later on - don't sweat it. Apply heat using hair drier until this initial pigment job appears dry. Now soak a soft flat brush* with Universal weathering carrier, touch it to a piece of paper to remove the excessive carrier (brush needs to be damp not dripping wet) and then swipe it over the pigment job you just did using vertical brushstrokes - observe how easily cool streaking lines are appearing. Move from bottom to top of the vehicle and the other way round. Keep swiping until you remove as much pigment as you need. You can end up with heavy streaking, barely visible effect or no streaking at all if you change your mind. Rinse the brush with Universal weathering carrier frequently so that it collects the pigments better. Remember to use damp, not dripping wet brush.
How to create light spatter on my vehicle's hull? (matt finish)
Mix your pigment with Alkyd "standard" type binders so as to produce weathering liquid, mix the liquid well so that there are no clumps unless you are going for heavy, textured spatter. Spatter is best created using a flat brush*. Dip the brush in weathering liquid and then touch it to a piece of paper to remove the excessive liquid. Press the bristles of the brush with your finger and move it in a backward direction so that the liquid gets sprayed. The procedure is similar to simple toothbrush spraying technique. Do test spraying on a sheet of paper to get the hang of it and adjust spatter size and density. With this technique you can produce light, heavy and thick spatter alike.
How to create heavy spatter on my vehicle's hull? (matt finish)
Procedure is similar to the one for light spatter described above. It's best to do some actual light spatter first and then follow up with heavy. After creating light spatter add some textured pigments to your existing weathering liquid or make a new batch with textured pigments. Apply this gritty mixture the same way as before (toothbrush spraying technique) over the lighter spatter to produce the accumulation. Apply the grit over the lower parts of your AFV and leave the upper parts with just the light spatter. If there are any unwanted clumps of pigments on the model simply use precision brush to “pick” them up.
How to create heavy spatter on my vehicle's hull? (wet finish)
Apply standard (matt) heavy spatter first as described above. Wait for it to cure for 24h hours so that the coat has better durability. Next mix a tiny bit of the pigments you used for the initial matt finish heavy spatter with Alkyd binders “gloss action” type. Tiny is the key word here, 5% of pigment in the mix is enough so that the gloss is retained. Apply this thick mixture over the matt spatter to enhance the finish and make it glossy. Use gentle taping motion while applying this glossy layer so that you don't disturb the original layer. The mixture will level and allow the original texture to show as it dries. If after 3h the gloss is fine you are done. If not apply another coat of Alkyd binders “gloss action” type this time don't use pigments, raw binder will do the trick.
Which binder to use to produce cool wet effects on hull? (pure binders without pigments)
Go with Alkyd “palette extender” binder type. It has optimal thickness, flow and levelling capabilities. Binder can be easily spread, will dry to a thin film and can be removed or modified up to 6h after application.
What techniques do you recommend to create wet effects on hull?
To create water residue or spilled fuel imitations apply the binders where you need them with a precision brush. Excessive or unnaturally looking binders can be removed or adjusted using Universal weathering carrier. Use the carrier to create soft transitions from wet to dry surfaces. To create streaking water imitation apply dots of binder atop the vehicle and swipe them down with flat brush* like you do while creating streaking, you don't need to dampen the brush with carrier – this way you will end up with sharp contours on your streaking. Another cool technique is rain marks, dip your flat brush* in the binder, wipe the excess and create spatter using toothbrush spraying technique. To create dispersed wet accents apply Alkyd binders with precision brush first. To create actual dispersion (lack of sharp contours and natural blending of a wet effect with it's surroundings) use Universal weathering carrier. Apply it all over the place so that the binders can disperse over the area. Use your brush to spread and move the binders until you have them just where intended.
What's the difference between “palette extender” and “gloss action” binder types?
Both of those binders are used to create varying wet effects. The difference lies in solids amount and flow. “Palette extender” is thinner and therefore flows better but has limited gloss capability – with a lot of pigments in it will turn matt. Gloss action is much thicker therefore harder to manipulate but can take in more pigments before it turns matt. Go with “palette extender” for thin satin finishes and with “gloss action” for thicker dripping wet effects.
How can binders aid me while filtering?
While filtering your goal is to change the shade of the base colour. For instance you may want to indicate that your AFV was rolling on a dusty road and make the base coat reflect that. You may want to create some fading using white, or darken the base to show the vehicle was extensively used, possibilities are endless. VMS Spot-on pigments are great for filtering as they are very fine and adhere very well on their own. When you couple them with Alkyd binders you can easily create your own filtering fluids on the spot. To filter your model with pigments you first need to create standard weathering fluid as described above. Apply it here and there on the model. Next step is to swipe over the target area with your flat brush* soaked with Universal weathering carrier so as to spread the pigments evenly over the surface. Continue swiping until you are happy with the result i.e. most pigments are gone and the area gets the intended change of colour.
My weathering liquid is not deep matt when it dries, it's glistening here and there.
This rarely happens but when it does simply add more pigments to the mix – the gloss will disappear.
What's the best way to clean my brushes after working with Alkyds?
For regular clean up - between the jobs, Universal weathering carrier will suffice. Just have some carrier ready, rinse the brushes and wipe clean using a paper towel or a cloth. For proper deep cleaning please use VMS Airbrush Cleaners Pro ENML type (label with blue ENML icon) which have maximum potency and will keep your brushes in top condition by freeing them of pigments and binders that accumulate at the base of the bristle. Brushes that are not deep cleaned regularly deteriorate faster overtime.
What's the difference between nylon and red sable brushes?
Synthetic nylon brushes are inexpensive but don't last as long as natural red sable ones. It's worth to invest in a red sable - they are cleaned far more easily, are softer and last forever if deep cleaned regularly.
*flat brush: 1 cm wide bristle, size 10+, we recommend red sable but nylon equivalent will do