This is also the first post from the ‘How to…’ series. In this column I will present short SBS’s that were parts of my main projects. And sometimes it’s going to be totally fresh stuff. Enjoy!
Today I’ll show you how to simply and effectively paint the rubber on tank wheels.
This tutorial is just a part of my long ZSU-57-2 project. You can find the full SBS it here:
Base-paint your wheels with colours suitable for your project. It’s often a good idea to use slightly different shades for some wheels. This will bring some chromatic variety to your model.
Paint the rubber bands matt black.
Prepare a light grey oil paint. My choice is Talens van Gogh palette. In this case I simply mix white with a little bit of black.
Dilute the paint with white spirit. The ratio is pretty important here. You need a medium opacity paint – a bit transparent but not runny! Use the photo below as reference.
Cover the rims with a thin layer of grey.
Wait till the paint is dry to the touch. It should take from 15 minutes to 1 hour depending on the temperature in your room. Use a hair-dryer to speed up the process.
Dip a q-tip in white spirit, then drain in on a piece of tissue. You don’t want the thinner to go all over the place.
Begin to wipe off the paint concentrating on the centre of the rubber rim. Don’t drag the q-tip around. It’s better to work with quick vertical tapping movements.
And don’t overdo this. The paint is still fresh. Two quick passes will do.
Grab a piece of a sponge and form a little ball. Dip the sponge in matt black paint and drain it on a tissue.
The thicker the paint, the better. The brand doesn’t matter as long as it isn’t a diluted airbrush-ready paint. I use Vallejo Model Colour for this.
Sponge the wheel, again concentrating on the centre. Adjust the intensity of the effect to your taste. It’s usually best to randomize it.
If your wheel has a tread or any convex structure, drybrush it with matt black.
And this is it, easy! Glue the wheels to your model, get some mud on them and you’re all set.