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"Weird masking tape shapes" Topic

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2,473 hits since 21 Aug 2011
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Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2011 9:37 a.m. PST

Lately, "I have been experimenting with masking tape and spray paint.
I have encountered some weird shapes while browsing "different" Sturmovik camo schemes. The "winter" ones looked particularly interesting.
PAinting the sworls by had will just look streaky, but it's pretty hard to hand-cut the masking tape too.

Does anyone know of any scrolly, curliecue shapes, with the same type of non-sticky afhesive as in the tapes and sheets sold for masking?

I am thinking they might be found in scrapbooking sections in craft stores, but in that context, the weak adhesive might be a drawback.

I am looking for patterns like stars, circles, sworls, and general cruved patterns that are smoother than an OFM with a brand new Xacto blade can cut. grin

Sundance Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2011 9:47 a.m. PST

Go to someplace like Michael's and look at the stickers for scrapbooking and at kids stickers. I know there are swirly stickers available, but not totally sure on where they can be had.

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2011 9:51 a.m. PST

I just want to be sure that their adhesive is as mild as the adhesive used for airbrush masking.

jpattern221 Aug 2011 10:03 a.m. PST

If the stickers are too sticky, there's an easy fix: stick the sticker to your arm a few times. Your body oils will get rid of most of the stickiness. If your arm is too hairy, invite a less-hairy friend over to help.

After you remove the stickers, lightly wash the model to get rid of any residue.

jpattern221 Aug 2011 10:04 a.m. PST

Craft stores also sell sheets of paper coated with Post-it adhesive, but then you have to cut out your own shapes, which can get tedious.

KatieL Inactive Member21 Aug 2011 10:32 a.m. PST

How big should the sworls be?

Personal logo John the OFM Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2011 10:43 a.m. PST

About the size to form patterns on 1/100 or 1/144 plane wings and fuselages.

ScoutII Inactive Member21 Aug 2011 11:35 a.m. PST

Might be worth looking at…depending on how much painting you have to do…

When I have a tank, plane or other larger thing that needs to be camouflaged…I use my Robocutter to cut the frisket paper. I design the shapes and what not, feed the paper in and then let it do the cutting for me. Apply the frisket to the model and paint. It probably cut the time to paint a tank down to about 10% what it used to. To top that off, I can do the various other masks as well for stuff like units and what not.

You can cut stuff pretty small with them – just remember to set the cutting speed fairly slow, and keep a sharp blade in the socket. Too fast or dull blades will snag.

Barring that, you always have the old fashioned way of cutting frisket.


The blade isn't held tight…it swivels. When you are cutting you just follow your lines and the swiveling blade lets it cut curves and sharp switch backs very easily and very quickly.

The final option (though in the end it can end up being more expensive than buying a Robocutter) is to hit the local "Beauty supply store". You can get stencil sets that they use for doing finger nails and the like there:


The come on sheets that are around 1 or 2 inches across. Stick em on…paint…move them a bit…paint…move them a bit…paint…grab a new sheet. You should be able to get a few uses out of them before they are no longer sticky at all (or tear). They make rigid masks as well which will last for years, but require more precision and practice to use (don't try using a rattle can, you will just end up with painted hands and a mess).

CeruLucifus21 Aug 2011 11:44 a.m. PST

Maybe a different masking material? I've seen camo painting tutorials where they used blobs of poster putty for masking -- should be easy to get rounded and irregular shapes with that.

myxemail Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2011 12:17 p.m. PST

Micro-Mark has very flexible masking tapes just for the purposes you describe. You can also lay masking tape on a sheet of glass, draw your design, then with a very new and sharp blade cut out the tape.


Personal logo Striker Supporting Member of TMP21 Aug 2011 12:54 p.m. PST

Silly putty will work for what donrice suggested. When I have to cut masking tape I put it on a piece of glass (like picture frame glass) and cut it on there with my xacto. That's how I did my splinter on 2 1/285 bf-110s. The tape will retain it's stickiness and you just lift it of the glass and put on the model. For shapes I would suggest one of those curve templates (I see them in office & art stores in the drafting section). To get bigger shapes I'd use a wider masking tape so that you aren't trying to get the edges of 2 thinner pieces lined up.

ming31 Inactive Member21 Aug 2011 1:01 p.m. PST

Silly putty works very well as a masking medium . I found generic in a dollar store . Micro mark makes a dual blade cutter for shpes in tape . Autobody shops use a masking tape where you can remove pinstipe sections for painting

pphalen Inactive Member23 Aug 2011 7:17 a.m. PST

Look in a hobby shop that does R/C vehicles. They have all sorts of interesting things in their paint sections…

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