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"Brush on varnish vs spray on" Topic

18 Posts

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6,611 hits since 28 Nov 2010
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Lord Ashram28 Nov 2010 7:03 a.m. PST

Hey all!

So, I have a few miniatures that are very valuable that I am reluctant to spray varnish… I know that it is very rare for stuff to get the White Mist of Death, but I simply cannot take a chance with this…

So, two quick thoughts/questions:

First, does brush on varnish ever get the White Mist of Death? Or is it normally only connected to spray varnish?

Second, does anyone know of any brands of brush-on matte varnish? I don't know anything about them, or where to get them.


blucher Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 7:11 a.m. PST

Brush on doesnt get the mist.

Humbrol liquid is what I use. It is readily avaliable and has always worked for me without issue.

RavenscraftCybernetics Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 7:15 a.m. PST

you could spray thevarnish into a puddle and brush it on from there.
do it on a low humidity day though.

CPBelt Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 7:16 a.m. PST

Pebeo matt varnish is supposed to be the best. Dick Blick sells it. Haven't used it myself.

Inkbiz Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 7:20 a.m. PST

Ugh…I lost an entire 1:10 Prussian 6mm Brigade to The White Mist of Death. I still get choked up thinking about it. Sigh… :( That was a spray varnish…

Stronty Girl Fezian Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 7:34 a.m. PST

I've had the White Mist of Death from brush on varnish – when I was using a tin of matt wood varnish. I suspect it requires more vigourous stirring than hobby varnish…

cavcrazy28 Nov 2010 7:38 a.m. PST

I spray my figures with a gloss varnish, ….Early on I used a dull coat and ended up with the "White mist"….To remedy that I sprayed a gloss coat over them and it cleared them up….so now I gloss everything…..but thats my preference, I like the "look" of shiny soldiers.

14Bore28 Nov 2010 7:48 a.m. PST

I just finished photographed everything and only noticed 1 cavary regiment that had this. I spray dull coat (different types)and detest glossy coats. I suspect its a humidty problem that causes this, since as I said had this the worst and Tat may because I try to pick the best days to finish coat.

sector51 Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 7:52 a.m. PST

Ah I refer to it as the "Sugar coated frosting of Doom" and no it does not happen with brush on varnish.

What can happen with brush-on varnish is traces of white in the creases, if you apply too much varnish. I believe this is chalk that is used as a matting agent. So don't paint on too much varnish and you won't have the problem.

You can also test spray varnish before use, on an unwanted model.

An art shop should have matt varnish.

cavcrazy28 Nov 2010 9:45 a.m. PST

The nice thing about gloss coat is with my painting style it tends to make the colors blend together nicely…..But to each his own.

John de Terre Neuve Supporting Member of TMP28 Nov 2010 9:57 a.m. PST

I believe the problem is failure to shake or stir adequately thus failing to mix in the matting agent. I have had it happen with both spray and brush on. A very easy remedy as described above is to re-apply gloss polyurethane.

Lord Raglan Inactive Member28 Nov 2010 10:41 a.m. PST

Spray ever time – except when its cold outside. Varnish in the summer months, it always takes better.


vutpakdi Inactive Member29 Nov 2010 3:35 a.m. PST

I've used Liquitex Matte Varnish, Reaper MSP Brush On Sealer, and Lascaux UV Resistant Mate. They all work. All need to be thinned and applied in thin coats or they can get satiny.

Of them all, my favorite is the Lascaux from Dick Blick. Seems to come out the most forgiving.

I usually apply with an airbrush these days.


Jemima Fawr Inactive Member29 Nov 2010 6:02 a.m. PST

Brush-on varnish most definitely DOES get the white mist of death! It's not a problem unique to spray. I've had it happen with three different brands of brush-on varnish: Humbrol Matt-Cote, Rowney & Windsor & Newton.

I now use the GW satin spray ('Purity Seal') varnish and have no problems whatsoever – I did have occasional problems when the formula was matt.

HobbyGuy Inactive Member29 Nov 2010 10:08 a.m. PST

Hmm, good tips.

donlowry29 Nov 2010 10:16 a.m. PST

I brush on a clear acrylic.

Goose666 Inactive Member29 Nov 2010 1:29 p.m. PST

White mist comes from;

1. Humidity… brush or spray can be suseptable.
2. Not shaking the can or mixing varnish properly before use. Most say mix/shake vigorously for 2 to 3 minutes. Most people tend to shake for 30 seconds. Best to time it as sad as that may sound. Your arm will most likely ache after ward.

3. Spray in light layers and build it up. People tend to apply in too heavy a layer, this also goes white.

4. Most varnish spray cans have a "pea" or "pip" inside to rattle and help mix when shaken. This gets stuck and sometimes people don't realise. Bes to bang the can with your palm or against a firm object a few times to shake it loose, before shaking for the instructed time.

With the humidity issue, your bound by the atmosphere where ever you are, so best to pick a low humidity day with average temperatures. Too cold and too hot can affect the varnishing.

So.. what i am saying is read the instructions on the van and follow them properly.. :) lol.

I have some testors dull coat in bottle form for individial figures. Seems to work ok, but not as durable as a gloss base coat with a matt finish over the top mind.

Rod Robertson Inactive Member29 Nov 2010 2:09 p.m. PST

But spraying on Dullcoat smells so good and makes me high, man. It's bodacious to the extreme and so narly, dude! Like the little tanks seem to move and dance and sing and love each other totally. Wow, can I get that with a brush, like no way man; so don't chill my high with no brush-on stuff! Spray all the way and you'll have a better day! What a bumber you hosers with brushes can be.
Rod Robertson, man!

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