Panel lines washes have always been a problem for me and because of that I have become more and more lazy about applying them, this has resulted in using Gundam markers exclusively. I wanted to change this so I stopped being a cheap skate and bought a few things that would help.
Firstly after the Clanche Custom I have become hesitant to use mineral spirits anymore so I decided to change to lighter fluid, but unfortunately its hard as hell to find where I live (New York City). So instead I ordered some off amazon and even though this is a type of fuel I didn’t have any problems having it shipped surprisingly.
Next was the topcoat, and I have to admit something… I don’t topcoat my models. I used to use acrylic top coat sprays but just like with spraying acrylic paints its drying time really doesn’t sit well with me resulting in over spray every time. So since I paint with gloss lacquers I thought it wasn’t needed for me to apply a topcoat. This time however I found some Testors lacquer topcoat and even thought it might have been the dullcoat (it wasn’t labeled that well) I was really happy with it. I always felt lacquer topcoat sprays were too expensive but now I am starting to see the value in them.
Finally the last purchase was 2 Tamiya Panel Line Accent Color bottles. When this product was first announced it sounded like a nice convenience but unneeded, one day though I was browsing through my regular Gunpla links and found a review of them. What caught my eye was that the reviewer said that their paint to thinner ratio was perfect. There has been too many times where I have messed up the thinning ratio and had to use more paint to even it out inevitability wasting it. What also interested me was the price, while at first the price seemed a little steep the size of the bottle is a few times larger compared to average enamel paint bottles (Testors or Tamiya) making up for the price difference.
Subsequently I applied all of the new items on the Buster and the result was the best and fastest panel lining job I have ever done on a model. I can’t be sure which one specifically had the most positive effect but from now on I am using all three of them on every single build I do.