Painting the Mad Cow Little John with Createx Colors

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
I enjoy the build threads published on TRF. However, paint is my first love and thought a paint thread might be fun and, perhaps, maybe even useful.

The subject is a 4" Little John from Madcow Rocketry painted with the Createx Colors (sealers, basecoats, candies, metallics, and pearls) line of paints.

The Createx line is my choice because they are waterborne paints, clean easily with water, reasonable in costs, dry quick, and Hobby Lobby carries most of what is needed. Generally, Createx offers lots of great, reasonably priced, interchangeable options.

A quick note about safety - follow all safety precautions outlined in the Createx, DupliColor, and PPG literature. Wear a respirator during the spraying process. Wear a respirator AND eye protection during clear coating!

Below are goal and the result. (More process details will be located in an Endnote section at the end of the thread.)

Rocket 1.jpg
 

justforfun

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Oct 27, 2015
Messages
79
Reaction score
80
Location
Nevada
Like the scales.

I've been using the following items.

Createx Airbrush Colors Opaque

Custom Creative Speed Clear Extreme C8500

Createx Colors Intercoat 4030

Auto-Air Flash Reducer Fast Dry 4011

I've been purchasing from a company called, spraygunner.com

The C8500 clear coat is very easy to apply.

Used Two part Epoxy and Lacquer for years, the
Waterborn Paint is very easy to use.

I use High Build Polyester Primer/Surfacer , used it for years, just used to it. Started using that when I stopped using Lacquer primer.

Just wondering, what is your total process?



 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Here are the general steps for the Little John. All colors are candies from Createx.

  1. Level and smooth the rocket. (wood filler, high-build primer, glazing putty, Ace primer)
  2. Create the canvas. (Silver sealer, coarse metallic, and clear coat.)
  3. Layout the design with tape.
  4. Add color and artwork. (Marine Blue, Deep Purple, Blood Red, Grabber Orange, and Yellow candies.)
  5. Clearcoat - make it pop!
  6. Stand back and Admire!!

STEP 1. Leveling and smoothing the rocket (you have done this a million times!)

Little John (as opposed to Fryer Tuck) went together based on instructions. Everything is stock other than an Aerotech motor mount and a Kevlar leader. (Nice kit!) Thinned Elmer's wood putty is applied on spirals, plywood fins, and fillets.

Rocket 2.jpg


The EWP was sanded with 320 grit and a primed (Ace primer). This process is repeated as needed. Two coats of DupliColor High Build primer were sprayed and sanded with 600 grit between coats. Red putty was applied between coats. Finally, small repairs are made with red putty and Ace Primer. (I Ran out of Ace primer, so it is a bit blotchy! Start with a uniform surface if you can.)

Rocket 3.jpg
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
I can't say enough about cleaning the surface before priming, taping, painting, and clearing.
  • I use a damp clean rag, wax and grease remover, and then alcohol.
  • Spray the solvent on a rag first then wipe the surface.
  • Be careful when using water on a cardboard rocket! After a clear coat, water is not as big of an issue.
  • (DO NOT USE ALCOHOL ON UN-COATED CANDIES.)
A clean surface promotes adhesion. Adhesion is always a good thing, especially when there is tape involved.

Rocket 4.jpg
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Like the scales.
Thanks - very easy to do - just time-consuming.

Custom Creative Speed Clear Extreme C8500
The C8500 product and price look great! Might give it a shot. I use PPG Shopline because of the slow, medium, and fast hardeners. It provides flexibility in different weather.

I've been purchasing from a company called, spraygunner.com
Nice site. Have you used there striping tape? Is it vinyl? It seems very reasonable in cost.

Just wondering, what is your total process?
I will be posting more over the next few days. These will have more process details. Let me know if there are questions.
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
STEP 2 - Create the canvas

NOTE: Before, we go any further, a word about custom paints. Applying custom candies and flakes is a multi-step process. First is a base coat, then effects (metallics, pearl,etc.) are used, followed by layers of candy dyes. (Effects can follow.) The next few steps are similar for metallics and candies regardless of the custom paint line used.

The first coat is the AutoBorne Sealer Silver (6013) from Createx. It took about 5 coats due to the blotchy primer. (3 is typical.)
Rocket 5.jpg
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
The result is a slightly rough texture with a matte finish. (I believe most Createx paints dry matte.)
Rocket 6.jpg


Now we add flakes. Createx Auto-Air offers metal flakes in fine, medium, and coarse grades. In our case, we used Aluminium Base Coarse (4103).

3 lite coats of Aluminium Base Coarse were applied. Keep in mind this is for effect NOT coverage or color. (1 coat works as well, it just depends on how much flake you want. )

Rocket 7.jpg


The finish is rough to the touch, but sparkly. Very cool looking!
Rocket8.jpg


Now, when you get to this point, you have a beautiful flaked rocket! You might be tempted to purchase Grabber Orange (4654) or Blood Red (4650) Candy2O and apply 5-7 coats, then a clear coat. If you did, you'd have the prettiest rocket at the launch!

You could also mask off a name, lay down 4-5 coats of candy, remove the mask, and lay down 3 more coats.

The effect is killer! The point being Createx gives you lots of options.
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
3 Coats of PPG Shop Line clear (JH660) with Medium Hardener (JH6680) is applied as an inter-coat clear. (See endnotes for more on inter-coats and clearing.)
Rocket9.jpg


The clearing is truly the most fun part of the process because it brings all the work to life. Clearing makes the metal flakes really pop in the sunlight!

Rocket10.jpg

After drying overnight and a quick 600 grit sanding, the rocket is ready for artwork. This sanding step is NOT to correct surface imperfections as much as it is to remove the gloss. Be mindful not to go through the clear coat!

Careful wet sanding is possible because the clear seals the cardboard. I use a spray bottle to apply the water, wet sand, then remove the cuttings with a cloth.
 

neil_w

Slowly reviving
TRF Supporter
Joined
Jul 14, 2015
Messages
13,040
Reaction score
6,093
Location
Northern NJ
Impressive. Could you post some pics of all the different bottles of stuff you're using?
 

mbeels

Yes balsa
TRF Supporter
Joined
Feb 9, 2019
Messages
2,983
Reaction score
1,718
That does look great. Are you applying with an airbrush? Or spray gun? How much do you thin?
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Impressive. Could you post some pics of all the different bottles of stuff you're using?
Hey Neil,

Here is what's being used. It is/will be called out in the remainder of the thread.

First are the Dupli-color products - high build primer and reducer - purchased at O'riely's

Second is clear and harder - purchased at PPG automotive paint store. Sherwin Williams automotive is also a great source.

3rd is Createx Silver Sealer and Aluminum Base Coarse

Next 2 pics are Createx colors and reducer.

All createx products, other than Base Coarse, can be purchased at Hobby Lobby in 2 oz sizes.

Product1.jpgProduct2.jpgProduct3.jpgProduct4.jpgProduct5.jpg
 

PBic

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 27, 2017
Messages
110
Reaction score
68
Location
Eugene, OR
Thanks for posting this info. I’m just sorting out cooling and drying my air so I can shoot my own paint. Would you be willing share what gun/brush and tips you’re using on the various layers, and any PPE recommendations based on your experience?
 

Jozef

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Aug 26, 2014
Messages
350
Reaction score
106
Curious as to why the 2k urethane clear intercoat as opposed to Createx UVLS clear as an intercoat?
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
That does look great. Are you applying with an airbrush? Or spray gun? How much do you thin?
Thanks!

An airbrush was used for the scale and chevrons. A mini/detail gun was used for the larger areas.

From the perspective of thining...

The primer is reduced 1 to 1.
Clear is not reduced but is mixed 2 to 1 with a hardener.
Sealer Silver and Aluminum Base Coarse is reduced by around 10%. An additive called 4030 (more on this later in the thread when we talk about candies) was added to Base Coarse to around ~30%.

Only slight deviation per instruction due to weather.
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Curious as to why the 2k urethane clear intercoat as opposed to Createx UVLS clear as an intercoat?
Great question! UVLS Gloss 4050 from Createx looks like it would be a great inter-coat clear. People are excited about what it can do.

In the next post, I will bring 4050 up as an inter-coat option as well as discuss it for a candy carrier.
 

Hooked On Rockets

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Feb 24, 2019
Messages
367
Reaction score
141
Curious as to why the 2k urethane clear intercoat as opposed to Createx UVLS clear as an intercoat?
I'm confused by this question, I've read and re-read this post and pictures and I can't find any mention of 2K urethane anywhere. I used to spray 2K decades ago, maybe they changed the name to something mentioned in this post???? (scratching my head)..

But, if my hunch is correct, and 2K is used as an inter-coat (undercoat) clear coat. It's because it cures HARD AS A ROCK and can be scuffed/block sanded up a bit to level the surface before the art work begins.

It has a "small" color-sand/buff window" for final coat, but since it's not the final clear coat, that opens the time window for blocking/scuffing.....

JMHO, and eagerly watching..

And I'm gonna have to try that Createx, that looks like it just the thing to drive down my alley!!!

SS
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Thanks for posting this info. I’m just sorting out cooling and drying my air so I can shoot my own paint. Would you be willing share what gun/brush and tips you’re using on the various layers, and any PPE recommendations based on your experience?
Cooling the air....I assume you are talking about the compressed air? I was in a high-end guitar shop in January using chilled air on the paint side. Sounds cool (pun intended)!

This is a low budget operation on this end. 2 detail/mini guns and a full-sized gun. All from Harbor Freight. (I wanted to start cheap 5 years ago and never saw the need to move up.)

Both detail guns have .8 tips. One for all things Createx (other than Auto-Air Sealers) the other for clearing. ( I know, a small tip for clearing but it has worked well.)

The large gun has a 1.4 tip for Createx sealers and will use it for a large flake project. In general, I try not to mix-use (solvent and waterborne) guns. (Dream minigun is an IWATA LPh80.)

The Craftsman compressor is a 5.5 HP, oil-less with 25-gallon tank. No issues with oil or water so no additions here.

PPE is a 3m 6200 series half-face respirator with organic vapor cartridges. I use this whenever spraying paints. Goggles, a paint sock (balaclava), and long sleeves are added when clearing.

Thats it! Simple, easy, low cost.


1588995146433.png
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
I'm confused by this question, I've read and re-read this post and pictures and I can't find any mention of 2K urethane anywhere. I used to spray 2K decades ago, maybe they changed the name to something mentioned in this post???? (scratching my head)..

But, if my hunch is correct, and 2K is used as an inter-coat (undercoat) clear coat. It's because it cures HARD AS A ROCK and can be scuffed/block sanded up a bit to level the surface before the art work begins.

It has a "small" color-sand/buff window" for final coat, but since it's not the final clear coat, that opens the time window for blocking/scuffing.....

JMHO, and eagerly watching..

And I'm gonna have to try that Createx, that looks like it just the thing to drive down my alley!!!

SS
Hope this helps clear things up...

3 Coats of PPG Shop Line clear (JH660) with Medium Hardener (JH6680) is applied as an inter-coat clear. (See endnotes for more on inter-coats and clearing.)
The JH660 is a K2 acrylic urethane. K2 describes a coating that needs to be mixed with hardener, catalyst, or activator. They are typically a more durable coating.

Curious as to why the 2k urethane clear intercoat as opposed to Createx UVLS clear as an intercoat?
Joes comments refer to Createx UVLS 4050 clear coat which is a K1 coating. K1 describes a coating that DOES NOT require a hardener, catalyst, or activator. This typically is easier to apply.

These characteristics make it a good inter-coat clear option, and depending on the application might not be a good final clear coat option.

But, if my hunch is correct, and 2K is used as an inter-coat (undercoat) clear coat. It's because it cures HARD AS A ROCK and can be scuffed/block sanded up a bit to level the surface before the art work begins.
You are spot-on - In our case, the inter-coat protects the flake, makes taping easier and bad artwork can be sanded off.
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
In the last thread post, we had just added the inter-coat clear and sanded the rocket for the artwork.

There was a suggestion that Creatx 4050 UVLS Gloss Clear could be used as an inter-coat. I have not used it but it certainly makes sense.

To clarify, an inter-coat clear does 3 things for us.
  1. First, it provides the flakes protection. Any disruption in the orientation of the flakes will show through when candy is applied.
  2. Secondly, mistakes can be wiped or sanded off with no harm to the flakes.
  3. Lastly, It's easier to apply and remove the tape when cleared.

STEP 3 - Laying out the design (endnotes will have more details)

Here, tape for the purple panels is being applied.

Rocket11.jpg


Tape for the red panels is being applied. The brown paper is a template. 3 templates were used, 1 for each color.

Rocket12.jpg


Tape for the orange panel is being applied. Note that the design goes up into the nose cone. It is a cool effect. (BTW - If you don't already, use an adhesion promoter prior to the first coat of primer on nose cones.)

Rocket13.jpg
 

Jozef

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Aug 26, 2014
Messages
350
Reaction score
106
Createx sent me sample of the new UVLS clear in gloss and Matt. I tried the gloss on a prepped 4 inch fiberglass nose cone that had been painted with Wicked Colors black. Used a 1.2 tip in my CA Technologies HVLP mini gun. It does not dry to a high gloss....more of a semi gloss. I would not use it as a high gloss top coat. I did, however, use it as in intercoat clear on an Estes Hi Flier XL painted with Wicked colors red pearl body with black fins. I used the UVLS clear before applying the waterslide decals. I used Shopline JH 660 clear as well to finish. I use JH660 on all of my rockets, most of which have been painted with Shopline single stage base coat. I

IMG_8149.jpg
 

JoeTekcor

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Sep 24, 2018
Messages
121
Reaction score
64
This is a very cool thread. I’m looking to graduate from rattle cans and this has been very helpful.
How much paint do you typically use for a rocket? I notice the createx are sold in 2oz bottles. How many would you need to cover a typical 4” rocket?
 

Greg Furtman

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Nov 10, 2018
Messages
1,766
Reaction score
1,086
Location
Webster, Wisconsin
This is a very cool thread. I’m looking to graduate from rattle cans and this has been very helpful.
How much paint do you typically use for a rocket? I notice the createx are sold in 2oz bottles. How many would you need to cover a typical 4” rocket?
Joe, Go to this website and you can find out what sizes they sell.
https://autoaircolors.com/

I bought this to play around with.



There are number of good YouTube videos on using Creatix paints & additives.
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
STEP 4 - Adding color

As we talked about earlier, this is going to be a project done with candies. Candies are dyes, are thin, and very highly concentrated in color. To get them to atomize and flow well and to increase adhesion and durability, candies are mixed with a "carrier" prior to spraying.

Up until January 31, Createx recommended 4030 Balancing Clear as the carrier. Since then, they release a new and better product call 4050 UVLS Gloss Clear as the preferred carrier. You might have seen it mention above. The product makes using candies easier!

Because of timing, 4030 was used on this project. However, all mixing ratios and handling are the same. To avoid confusion in this thread, I will use 4050 going forward.

Now to painting...

Now we get to the color! All areas NOT painted, are masked. All colors going forward are Createx Candy20 with the 4050 added as a carrier. This is mixed in a 3 to 1 ratio of carrier to candy.

Paint application follows the same order as the taping process. An airbrush took care of the detailed work and a detail spray gun for broader applications.

Scales are added using an airbrush, a template, and Marine Blue (4655) paint. Practice on paper first. As the last step, a shadow of blue is sprayed around the outside of the panel.

Rocket14.jpg


Remember, the beauty of candies is to build depth of color by using very lite, evenly applied coats. Take your time and be patient. Drying times between coats is 5 minutes if it is kept lite.

The template can be cut by hand or, in this case, with a Cameo cutter.

Rocket15.jpg


Deep Purple (4659) was then added over the 3 scaled panels. Start the purple on the outside edge and work inward. This gives the design depth. Finally, 3-4 even purple coats are sprayed over all three panels.

Rocket16.jpg
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Createx sent me sample of the new UVLS clear in gloss and Matt. I tried the gloss on a prepped 4 inch fiberglass nose cone that had been painted with Wicked Colors black. Used a 1.2 tip in my CA Technologies HVLP mini gun. It does not dry to a high gloss....more of a semi gloss. I would not use it as a high gloss top coat. I did, however, use it as in intercoat clear on an Estes Hi Flier XL painted with Wicked colors red pearl body with black fins. I used the UVLS clear before applying the waterslide decals. I used Shopline JH 660 clear as well to finish. I use JH660 on all of my rockets, most of which have been painted with Shopline single stage base coat. I

View attachment 415677
Can't go wrong with a Hi-FLier - nice looking.
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
This is a very cool thread. I’m looking to graduate from rattle cans and this has been very helpful.
How much paint do you typically use for a rocket? I notice the createx are sold in 2oz bottles. How many would you need to cover a typical 4” rocket?
Hey Joe,

Been thinking about the best way to answer this question simply because of the number of options Createx offers. Heres a rule of thumb.

4 oz of a product would provide 3 coats of color on a level 1 rocket. 2 oz of a product would be fine for mid-power and below.
The product can be their sealers, opaque colors, metallics, pearls, etc.

Two things to keep in mind.
1. Candies are mixed 3 to 1 with a carrier. So 2 oz of candy will go a long way.
2. Createx recommends "color-keying" the base coat with the effect coat. For example, using a red sealer under a red metallic or a red pearl. This enables a more consistent effect application and reduces the amount of the effect needed.

I hope this helps
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
Do you start with the template from the aft or fore end of the panel?
Thanks Nyrunner. Sticky would be good!

In the case of the scales, I started aft and move the template forward. I the case of the chevrons below, start at the fore-end and move the template aft.
In general, move the template away from the shade just applied. (Draggin the template over fresh paints would not be good!)
 

Rocketcas

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 9, 2009
Messages
66
Reaction score
66
The Blood Red (4650) panels are next. Mask off areas you do not want to be painted, including the scales.

The design is done using a chevron template and Deep Purple candy. Then create a purple shadow around the panel edges with purple.

Notice the deep, purple color on the template! Product of many lite coats.
Rocket17.jpg


Start applying the red around the edges, moving tot the center, and then as many coats as needed to get the desired color.

Rocket18.jpg
 
Top