Probably been covered before, but don't remember (senior moment.....or two) what is the best primer for plastic models. Painting a Precision Craft F unit pair with Polly Scale acrylic. Have heard many different stories ( Rustoleum auto primer, Floquil enamel primer and many others) about what works best? Thought this would be the place to ask. Actually I'm open to all suggestions on paint and primers.
I use automotive primer aerosols for priming everything, except brass (and aluminium) where a degree of etching is required. I spray very lightly to get full coverage in 2-3 coats. Have tried other types but automotive primer works just as well for me. One can buy red-oxide, black or white here in NZ.
Primers have two functions, to improve the bond between finish coat and surface, and to provide uniform neutral colour for best colour rendition. For some surface/paint combinations they also serve to protect the surface and the finish coats from each other.
Re: 2): two methods: a) Acrylics suitable for plastic don't really need a primer, but the surface must be clean. Try a citrus-based cleaner, but try it one a piece of scrap styrene first. Use a dilute solution several times with rinsing in between. Follow up with detergent. Rinse thoroughly and let air-dry. Then apply a neutral colour all over the model.
b) After cleaning the surface as above, you may apply a couple of three very light coats of solvent based primer (eg, light grey.) Spray from a distance such that the paint is almost dry when it hits the plastic. The solvent will etch the surface just enough that the primer will stick and provide "tooth" for the finish coats.
As a general rule, a primer coat should be just dense enough to provide uniform colour. It doesn't take much to provide the "tooth."
Re: 3) I'm comfortable with both enamels and acrylics, but prefer acrylics.
Thanks Wolf......... I think I'm going to Skip the primer as I will be using acrylic (Rock Island maroon) on a cream colored undecorated precision craft A & B F unit. I'll just make sure its clean as one can get it.