Deciding on what Grey Primer to get....
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Thread: Deciding on what Grey Primer to get....

  1. #1

    Default Deciding on what Grey Primer to get....

    As the title mentions....I would like to purchase grey primer. After going through different threads and forums, I finally pinned them down to two choices:

    The Vallejo Grey Primer (brush on tub---since I own an airbrush)

    Krylon Grey Primer---able to get from art supply store

    Prices as follows:

    Vallejo ~$16 plus $4 shipping (E-bay--UK supplier)
    Krylon ~$8


    Vallejo--Ideal for surfaces like plastics, brass, resin, etc.
    Krylon--Wood, Metal, Wicker, Glass, Plaster, Ceramic, Fabric, Paper, Paper Mache

    Krylon does not mention anything on resin or plastic which has me worried for a bit since some things I have are in well cast resin---FW, Kingdom of Death, McVey....Has anyone used this primer on resin/plastic or is this primer too harsh?


    When it comes to grey primer, I have heard that some of them are very powerful in odor and may cause some headaches...this concerns me since I hope not to pass out while painting a model from toxic fumes.

    I will assume that the Vallejo grey primer is more forgiving since it is in a paint tub rather than aerosol can, which takes me back to Krylon. I heard this stuff can become unbearable when it comes to odor.

    I hope you guys who have used these primers could give me more info since you might have had more experience using them and how well they worked for you, before I go ahead and get them.

    Thanks for your time

  2. #2
    Consummate Brushlicker Jericho's Avatar
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    How big is that tub of grey brush-on primer from Vallejo? Looks like a good deal actually. Airbrush will take more setup/cleanup time than spray primers for sure, but you can definitely get a more controlled result.

  3. #3


    Oops forgot to mention that...

    Its a 200 ml tub.

    I was thinking about the same idea of convenience, where its easier to use aerosol cans because of the quick setup, rather then having to setup your airbrush in order to get your mini's primed....but also thought how better it would be to prime models with an airbrush since you would have better control in your priming.

  4. #4
    Superfreak!!! Dragonsreach's Avatar
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    Hmmmn Number of questions come to mind:
    1: You on a limited budget? As $28 total to find out the best option for the rest of your painting career doesn't seem too pricey to me.
    2: Which Vallejo Primer you talking about? Is it Alcohol based, which could be the origin Odour issue you mentioned. (I've used Vallejo Airbrush Grey Primer. Brushed on and Airbrushed and it's nice either way)
    3: Krylon has a lot of followers, but since I've never seen it over here, so I have no point of reference.
    4: Is an automotive grey primer not an option? Over in the UK we have Halfords which has a range of good primers. Black, White, Grey & Red.
    5: Ever considered Acrylic Graffitti Art Paint? Montana Gold is available in many colours and a number of Grey shades. It's flat and has a good tooth for painting on top of.
    6: Tamiya Fine Surface Primer...really nice stuff and I'm sure it has a grey version.
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  5. #5


    -Not on a limited budget, but as well I don't want to buy something and find out it does not work well or worse....ruining of a model.
    -I'm not sure of the properties of the primer but they call it Acrylic-Poliurethan Primer which you can simply brush on or airbrush.
    -I have asked my brother (since he does industrial design) if he has used them and said yes, but had to use face mask in order to use it---which in hand made me a bit worried.
    -When it comes down to automotive primers...I have heard more cons than pros TBH and thus never considered them.
    -I am interested to hear more on the Tamiya's primers since not many forums have mentioned them...and I can't seem to find a supplier here in Toronto....since no one is allowed to ship them via plane...unless someone can direct to one that would be great.

    Thanks for the replies

  6. #6


    I own both the black and the grey primer from vallejo (albeit the 60ml versions) and they work like a charm. They smell different from normal vallejo colors, but not in a offensive kind of way. I'm kind of sensitive in regards of getting headaches quit easily, but I had no problems with the primer even w/o wearing a mask.

    To be honest I heard some great things about Kyrlon products too (compared to GW primers for example), but since you own an airbrush I would go for the vallejo primer for 3 reasons:

    1. you won't ever run into humidity/weather related problems.
    2. you can even spray indoors depending on how much noise your compressor generates (or your family/neighbors can stand).
    3. With a good dual action AB you have far more control compared to a spray can.

    I nearly ruined some models once using a aerosol primer and after getting myself an airbrush I would never ever go back using cans, even if you would pay me for it.
    Last edited by Karnstein; 08-22-2010 at 11:54 AM.

  7. #7


    Quote Originally Posted by Scipunk
    Prices as follows:

    Vallejo ~$16 plus $4 shipping (E-bay--UK supplier)
    Krylon ~$8
    What about Painter's Touch by Rustoleum?

    As far as the new acrylic-polyurethane primer from Vallejo goes it's sure worth trying since it offers the option of brush and spray application of the exact same primer. Plus it's supposed to have good bonding and be tough, as we'd expect from the polyurethane, but some of that may be marketing claims - I've read conflicting reports on how tough (e.g. can be scraped from plastic with a fingernail).

    But $20 seems a lot to pay for it with good alternatives available, especially if they're cheaper... now I don't know what this other primer from Rustoleum is like but man, check out the price!

    Quote Originally Posted by Scipunk

    When it comes to grey primer, I have heard that some of them are very powerful in odor and may cause some headaches...this concerns me since I hope not to pass out while painting a model from toxic fumes.
    Paint or primer in a spraycan shouldn't be sprayed inside the home ideally so this shouldn't be much of an issue; if you have to spray indoors for whatever reason (when it's cold and wet outside for example, something most of us have to face at times) then don't do it where you work.

    Any offensive odour from primers shouldn't be related to colour, it'll be due to the primer type - if it's enamel or lacquer in particular it could have a very strong smell, but even the acrylic type has quite a pronounced odour although it's not so obviously Wow, check out the solvent fumes *gasp*

    I've sprayed small bits in my workroom with the acrylic spray primer I use - shooting downwards directly into a paper-lined waste basket - and even with a few short bursts the smell is really more than I'd want to sit around and work in.


  8. #8


    I use Krylon Grey Primer. But i was able to find it at Walmart for about $4.

    Great stuff, makes a real nice surface to work on. If you want to see what it looks like on a mini. About a quarter of the way into the video. Don't mind the scratch marks, they clean up easily.

    Cheers, Gary.

  9. #9
    Coffin Dodger / Keymaster airhead's Avatar
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    Personally, I like an oil based primer. Seems to have a better bite to it than a water based. Won't rub off as easy. Won't strip as easy either (can be good or bad).
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  10. #10


    the Army Painter primers are good if you have a supplier near you
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  11. #11


    Expensive though Mick.


  12. #12


    yeah, that is the down side, but it really does cover fantastically well with the minimum of sprays, I can't fault the finish either it's nice and smooth and easily painted over

    Once I've finished a can I'll try and figure out how many minis it did, the price per figure would be the bottom line I guess, whatever product you are using
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  13. #13


    Thanks guys for all your suggestions.

    Decided to give Krylon a try for the moment and see how that goes, while at the same time will probably decide to get the brush on/airbrush on paint in the near future.

    Thanks again

  14. #14


    I think Krylon is good to go. Just make sure you buy the "primer" and not just the regular stuff. They have all sorts of coloured primers too, White, Brown, Black, Grey. and some other ones! I think they're pretty good.

  15. #15


    Try Mr Surfacer 1200, I have used it for a few years on my scale model aircraft and armour and have found it to be the best around.
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