How do you use Matt varnish with an airbrush and avoid frosting?
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Thread: How do you use Matt varnish with an airbrush and avoid frosting?

  1. #1

    Default How do you use Matt varnish with an airbrush and avoid frosting?

    Apologies if this sounds like a rant, but for the last two years I’ve been trying to find and use a good Matt varnish, and I’m at my wits end and need help figuring this out.


    Basically, no matter what kind of Matt varnish I use with the airbrush I get a little bit of frosting. It’s noticeable when I put up the model to a light or if you look at the model close up, and I’m really starting to wonder if this is just the nature of Matt varnish, that no matter what there is always going to be some frosting.


    Now I should mention that in my standard process I first spray my mini with gloss varnish to give it a good coat of protection, but for the most part I usually wait a minimum of 24 hours to let it dry fully before hitting it with Matt.


    Iv tried several different brands: Vallejo, Ak Inkeractive, Lucky Brand Ammo by Mig, Army Painter Anti Shine, and some others to name a few. Iv tried using them straight from the airbrush, mixed with water, mixed with airbrush thinner, Iv tried various different amounts of thinner (for example 50/50 or 1/3 or 3/1 ect ect).


    I know humidity is not an issue, but just to be safe I used a dehumidifier to make sure my workspace has a low amount, and I still get a little bit of frosting.


    I spray in very short bursts, and in my experiments Iv tried many times doing a thin layer and coming back to do the next layer several hours later but to no avail.


    The only thing that works for me and that doesn’t give me any frosting is Army Painter Anti Shine in a spraycan, but I dislike the lack of control I get from using a spraycan. As I mentioned I tried using AP Anti Shine from the drop bottle for the airbrush, but I still end up with some frosting.




  2. #2
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    Sounds like you might be getting some moisture coming out of the airbrush.
    if you haven’t got a moisture trap, get one. If you have add a bit of cotton wool in it to increase its efficiency.
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  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonsreach View Post
    Sounds like you might be getting some moisture coming out of the airbrush.
    if you haven’t got a moisture trap, get one. If you have add a bit of cotton wool in it to increase its efficiency.
    I can confirm that I do in fact have a moisture trap that works perfectly, so that can’t be it.

  4. #4

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    Spraying from too far maybe, so the varnish doesn't form a wet coat? I'm using a few of the brands you mentioned and they all worked for me.

  5. #5

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    I use both the Ammo Mig and AK Interactive matte varnishes and have never had a single episode of frosting. Used both during days of temperature/moisture extremes. Zero problems regardless of usage parameters.

  6. #6

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    A few things. Don't spray it on in thin coats and don't add anything to thin it. Give that a go and see how it works. I have been there. That is what worked for me. Best of luck
    "Remember, you can't spell paint without a little pain."

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