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Re: Should we discuss Primer? I gesso.

Hi Donald, I see what you did there with the thread title! I "Gesso" indeed!!

I am pretty much the same as you when comes to priming. Usually brush on but have used sprays when have wanted to save time. Generally speaking, Vallejo brush on primers & Army Painter sprays.....although the latter are a little more on the pricey side. Not had a problem with either.
The spray is indeed normally grey, as is my brush on primer most of the time. If it is out of stock, I will go for skeleton bone as a similar "neutral" colour. Sort of a grey-beige colour. I have used black also in the past, which I havent had too much of a problem with albeit maybe the top coats of some colours might come out a little darker than intended, moreso if the paint consistency is quite thin. But still no game changing issues.

But lately I have just used Vallejo coloured brush on primers, not due to me wanting to have a try, but due to the fact I got bought a few bottles earlier in the year as a gift. Red, blue, green & brown shades.
So if I have been doing figures in red tunics, I have used the red, blue tunics, then the blue primer. Riflemen etc, then the green & lastly, brown for horses.
My observations are that they seem to do a decent job and dont affect the top coats drastically that I have noticed. Sometimes I think the blue primer darkens the blue used for the tunics a little, but not to the point its a problem. Otherwise they just seem to help with masking any missed or awkward areas. So I may switch to using coloured primers, but if cant find the colour I want, I will be more than happy to just go back to using grey.

I guess the coloured primers may come in handy if someone was a wargamer but not interested in having their armies painted up properly, but just wanted them the same colour, like trying to get the figures in the same colour plastic.

Again like you Donald, I have not had the issue of flaking paint. But I dont constantly have to handle them like a wargamer might.

I also make sure the figures are soaked first to get any grease etc off from manufacture. I have also heard of people painting on diluted pva glue as a primer, due to it obviously bonding more to the plastic, but cant say its a method I have tried myself. Not yet anyway!

Re: Should we discuss Primer? I gesso.

Well, Roger, I am a wargamer. However, unless you are one of those plutocrats who can afford to get others to paint for you, we are also painters. Indeed, the hobby is mostly painting - multiple hours of painting for every hour of wargaming.

Fortunately, I enjoy the painting aspect. I won't pretend to be any sort of expert painter but I have improved over the years. I stand in awe of many in our hobby - the makers of dioramas are mostly amazing but my figures aren't too awful.

I found black undercoating made it hard for me to see detail but it certainly helped with shading. I think a white undercoat made for brighter colours.I know some use a brown undercoat. I hope someone pops up to champion this colour of primer. As for the various colours, I can certainly see the value in using them for a figure predominately wearing that colour but I never wanted to spend that much on multiple rattle cans to fit all needs.

It is certainly interesting to see the strides forward being made with all aspects of paint over the last few years.


Re: Should we discuss Primer? I gesso.

Oh dont get me wrong Donald, I know there are wargamers out there who do indeed like their armies properly painted, I just meant that there are some out there who, at the beginning at least, just want theirs to be the same colour, hence some people in the past requesting a set be made a certain colour plastic.
In terms of Napoleonics, red for British, blue for French, green for Russian etc.
I had a chat with a guy I bought some figures 2nd hand from online, he too was into Napoleonics & having armies for wargames, but he said its the tactical side of things he was more into, rather than the painting/uniforms side of things. So all he cared about was the figures belonging to a particular nation being the same colour, hence my earlier comment about coloured primers.
I am not a wargamer, so wouldnt know the ratio of who prefers their armies to be just the same colour to those who want them painted properly with uniforms. But yes like you, I enjoy the painting aspect of the hobby. In fact, if I wasn't that keen on painting, I probably wouldnt even be bothering buying figures in the first place!

No I can't say I would of deliberately gone out and bought various different colours of primer either, like I said, I was also happy with grey primer as a "balance" between white & black. The only reason I have them now, is due to being bought some by family on my birthday a few months back.

As it stands, I wont run out of all 4 bottles at the same time, so at most I would only be buying 1-2 bottles as replacements if do decide to continue with the colours.
I should add these colour primers I have are the Vallejo 17ml bottles rather than the Army Painter colour primer spray way would I pay the amount that little lot would cost for each colour per spray can!!! I have just the one can bought on an impulse to try out, but even though I think its decent stuff, I would only ever entertain getting the one can. I generally brush on primer anyway.

But either way, I am just as happy using a simple neutral grey primer as I am a coloured one. So long as it does the job.
I guess the one thing I have noticed, is that by having a colour for each nation, I dont seem to be buying a bottle of primer quite as often. As when was just using grey, a single bottle was doing everything.

Re: Should we discuss Primer? I gesso.

Blame me indeed! :relaxed:

I've said me bit, so will merely read the responses.

Regards, James