The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Well-Known Member
Sep 20, 2003
Reaction score
As much as I try to prepare my rockets for paint, I have noticed that the first application of paint truely reveals all deficiencies. I have kinda come to depend on that first shot to show where more work is needed. Am I alone here?
Heck, I'm sure primer has many wonderful uses, but for me, it's FIRST use is in locating defects in a surface :) The fact that it helps fill some of those defects and provides a good surface for paint are by-products of its primary purpose of locating all the imperfections in the surface...

fwiw... :)
That's the only way to get a good finish.

I've recently started using Kilz spray primer, and let me tell you, it's the berries (that's good for all non-Okies). It fills good, dries quick, and is easy to sand. It's a bit more expensive, but well worth it in my opinion.

I recently used it on a Semroc Laser-X kit and didn't even use any Fill-n-Finish on the fins. Two coats of Kilz (sanding in between coats) and the grain was filled and ready for final finish.

John, Is this Kliz primer available at WalMart? If not, where so you buy it? I'm always looking for the easiest way to finish fins. So far Elmer's Carpenter's Wood Filler in the tube is what I've found. 2 coats of Kliz might just be easier.
I buy mine at Wal-Mart. There are a few different styles...I use the "classic" oil-based spray primer. It's white in color. Even though it's oil-based, Krylon goes on it just fine. Just be sure the primer is fully cured before you spray on your gloss coats. I do the "sniff test"....if it still smells like paint, it hasn't fully dried yet.


I don't remember exactly, but I think it's about $3.50 a can.

I'd check when I got home, but they don't put prices on anything anymore. Just barcodes :mad:

The first primer coats in auto-body restoration are for just this purpose - identifying the defects so that more sanding (and filling) can be done to ensure a perfectly smooth surface. Works on model rockets just as well!

For airbrushers out there, I've had great results using primer that is intended for use in house painting. Of course, it needs to be thinned, but it works really well.

Latest posts