avatar_John Howling Mouse

Homemade Decals

Started by John Howling Mouse, February 08, 2004, 12:44:41 PM

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John Howling Mouse

Recall awhile back that I bought the Testor's mini-decal making kit.
Have printed my first sheet; looks fantastic (much better than the reduced, reprinted image you see below).
Wish me luck as I spray the decal-bond coat and try these decals out tomorrow.
Have started with a very basic set of text that I need for several things on the go.

The Mazaria and Javaria references are to a pair of fictional countries of my own making (looooooooooong story).

It allows to scratchbuilt virtually anything and not worry about it having any connection whatsoever to "real" history...
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

Ollie

Hey Barry, I have the same kit, but hasn't tried it yet.  What printer do you use?  I have an old Canon BJC-4100, so I would need to use a different printer for that.

Have you ordered the extra software?  I'm planning on ordering it with a friend who's got the same kit.

Keep me posted, I'm very interested in this little gizmo.

:ph34r:  

John Howling Mouse

Hi Ollie.
I have an HP DeskJet 932C.  Pretty nice printer, especially for crisp dithering and photographic work.
So far, the printed decal sheet looks very, very crisp---as good as the best photos I've ever printed on HP's deluxe photopaper.  But this happened with another brand I tried recently as well, then their own decal bonder still made the printed ink bleed, even with a dusting initial airbrush coat.

Haven't ordered the software.  I'm still trying to figure out how to get into your Photoshop realm now that I've got a bundle of Corel product (figures, just like my Acryl paint: I end up with too much of the same thing).

I'm going to give the ink overnight to dry and will spray Testor's decal bond on tomorrow.  If the ink remains intact, I'll try using some of the XF-16T related decals on that kit the next day (Tuesday).

Sure is nice to be home from the plant for once!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
B)  B)  B)  B)  
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

nev

Good luck with those decals mate.  Let us know how you get on :)
Between almost-true and completely-crazy, there is a rainbow of nice shades - Tophe


Sales of Airfix kits plummeted in the 1980s, and GCSEs had to be made easier as a result - James May

John Howling Mouse

Sprayed the Testor's decal bonder today.
It smells realllllllllll nice.  I think I'm high.

So far, no bleed of the ink.

Tomorrow, the real test (every home-printed decal system I've used
so far simply dissolved in the first second the decal hit the bowl of lukewarm water).

With all the failed attempts to date with decals, I'm starting to feel like Orville and Wilbur's lesser-known step-brother, Notso Wright, who kept putting the props backwards on his own first flyer.
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

John Howling Mouse

QuoteMicroscale do their own decal film, called Liquid Decal film (code MI-12)  which sounds like it's ideal.  I've used it on Propagteam decals (which are notoriously thin and consistently curl and tear on me) and it works.  Give that a spin, John.
Yes, I've found the MicroScale decal film works very well...on decals already "professionally" printed by others.

It made my other, homemade decal attempts bleed, though.  What I've learned from the people who are trying to make inkjet-printable, homemade decals viable is that the compatibility of all the elements (ink, printer type, paper, film) is one of the hardest eggs to crack.

I think I will chop up my decal sheet.  If first one falls apart in H2O, I will cut out another victim and try the MicroScale film over the existing Testor's film.

I just printed another sheet out, this time on Testor's white decal film.  Unlike the clear film, which printed very crisp and opague, the white film printed about half of the sheet as though the image was very weathered and worn.  Don't know if you'll be able to see in the attached image but some of the ink didn't quite gel properly on the right-hand side columns of tags.

Which, if the ink holds together, will be a perfect "accident" since I'm doing (fictional) subjects that would be owned by less-than-wealthy countries.
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

NARSES2

QuoteMicroscale do their own decal film, called Liquid Decal film (code MI-12)  which sounds like it's ideal.  I've used it on Propagteam decals (which are notoriously thin and consistently curl and tear on me) and it works.  Give that a spin, John.
Have anyone any experience with Czech Master decals - my last couple of attempts to use them ended up with them breaking up in the water. Any suggestions ?

Chris
Decals my @r$e!

John Howling Mouse

#7
Made a second attempt today to print the more colorful of the two homemade decal sheets above.  This is, again on the WHITE Testor's paper.
All inks, except black, appear to print quite nicely and this was at only 70% of
original's size.  The black prints as if the ink has slightly beaded away from the paper, leaving a very tiny "tire-track" kind of effect.

It looks like the kind of thing that happens on black laquered furniture when it is moved to a different location with suddenly different humidity.

Weird.

Oh, and if you buy the Testor's Decal Sheet (only) replacement sheets, be forewarned: there is supposed to be 3 clear and 3 white sheets.  Some have only 6 clear (no whites).

Ahhhh, Testors, the people who proudly put photographs on their boxtops showing their finished aircraft models, which are occassionally missing tires or prop blades, here and there (check out their 1:48 F-18 Hornet boxtop...oops).
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

John Howling Mouse

#8
Well, I tested out a sample decal cut from my print-out on the Testors white background decal-film.

Happy to report excellent results.  In fact, the pic below does not do it justice as I did not do  the best job of cutting out this quickie test piece, leaving a bit of the white decal film around it looking a bit ratty.

I let the decal sit in the water for only 3 seconds, left it on a blotter papertowel for about 10 seconds and the ink held together.

The decal, which I had coated twice with Testors spraypaint decal-bonder (Testors tells you to use only one coat), was flexible enough yet not unusually fragile.
For a comparison, I'd put it pretty much in the category of your average Hobbycraft decal.  

There was a bit of curl-up at two of the corners of this sample decal cut-out so I took a chance and used the Microscale "MicroSol" setting solution right after.  Got very favorable results and the decal seems to have held together.  I will let you know how the decal holds up in a week's time.  I may also coat it with Future (Klear) in two days, since that's what I'd do with regular decals.

And, as you can see, the white is quite opaque on this gunship grey background.
Will have to try out the clear background decals next.

All in all, I'm very satisfied.  Lookout, Two Bobs, here we come!!!     ^_^
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

Ollie

Good show Barry!

I'll order the full version of the software and start doing stuff!

:wub:  :wub:  

Nick

So what do you get in the box, how does it all work and what sort of price are we looking at?

Nick B)  

Ollie

For around 7$, you get a mini CD with the partial software, some decal paper, the decal protector.  The full software is 20$ and I'll mail the check this week.

B)  

John Howling Mouse

QuoteSo what do you get in the box, how does it all work and what sort of price are we looking at?

Nick B)
For original thread and product photo, please see:

http://www.whatifmodelers.com/forum//index...l=testors+decal
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

John Howling Mouse

#13
Today, I used some of the white Testors decal paper to create some background white opaque discs for my Israeli F-16T's Israeli "Star of David" roundels (the desert dune stripes would otherwise show right through the Italeri kit decals).

I had carefully cut out 5 discs, about 1/2" diameter.

No matter how careful I was, the discs would not adhere to the surface, they kept sticking more to the facial tissue I was trying to blot them down with.  Very frustrating!  These discs were cut from the very same sheet of printed decals I had already tested with positive results.

In the end, I ruined three discs in a row.  The last two, I simply left in place on the model, allowing them to airdry without blotting.

Once they were apparently (relatively) dry, I brushed them down with MicroSol decal-setting solution.  I waited awhile later, go impatient, then plunked down my
Italeri-kit's "Star of David" atop the white Testor's discs.

So far so good but those discs had me swearing up a storm!
Styrene in my blood and an impressive void in my cranium.

Ollie

I usually take a Q-Tip and lay it just next to the water, not on the decal.  It sucks the water right off.

:)