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"Primer shelf life/limitations?..." Topic

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524 hits since 26 Aug 2017
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Baranovich26 Aug 2017 4:33 p.m. PST

Doing a bunch of priming over the past few weeks, I used both GW black and Armory Black.

The GW spray worked flawlessly both outside on a fairly warm day with some humidity and also in a basement where the climate was controlled.

The Armory spray however, has been giving me all sorts of problems. I found that outside in any kind of warmth it's useless, it chalks up on the mini. and makes a mess of the detail.

The only time the Armory worked well was inside with air-conditioning. In fact in climate-controlled air the Armory worked as well as the GW spray.

But my other question is…does spray primer or varnish have a shelf life? As in, after a certain amount of time it loses its ability to function properly? I can't imagine that something in a compressed can would somehow expire where it wouldn't work anymore.

For reference, the GW spray was bought in 2012 and not used until just this month in 2017, five years later. And it was perfect. Absolutely flawless. The Armory spray was also about five years old.

Also for reference, I used the same five-year old Armory spray on several GW plastic terrain kits and also on several resin buildings just last year and it worked flawlessly.

I'm really at a loss as to why the Armory spray is so temperamental, but I'm ready to give up on as I have to now go back and clean up about 40 models that it chalked up on today.

Vigilant27 Aug 2017 3:25 a.m. PST

All aerosols can suffer from issues such as loss of pressure or the effects of moisture. Different brands probably have different properties. That said My biggest problem is running out rather than time expiration. I use car primer and have got through more cans than I like to think about this year.

Joes Shop Supporting Member of TMP27 Aug 2017 6:56 a.m. PST

What Vigilant said. Years ago I got into the habit of dating aerosol cans. I use a large sharpie and write the date on the cap. I dispose of (most) cans that are over a year old.

Baranovich27 Aug 2017 8:19 a.m. PST

Great feedback guys, thanks much appreciated!

It seems from what you are saying that certain brands over time can deteriorate. Seems like Armory spray suffers from this with regard to age. However, as I said it worked perfectly on terrain from 2015 and 2016 and the primer was already a few years old at that point. And the GW primer as I said was five years old and functioned perfectly.

I took your advice about car primer though. I should have just done this from the start. GW primer is fantastic but just too damn expensive.

I went to Walmart last night and got a couple cans of Krylon flat black primer. Did some minis this morning outside and it looks as good as the GW primer, flawless.

I also might have discovered something else about Armory primer. One common factor I noticed is with the spray nozzles themselves.

GW and the Krylon I bought last night have like that permanent sort of nozzle where it lays really low on the top of the can. Not sure else how to describe it so this picture shows it:


The Amory spray primer on the other hand has that like "floaty" type nozzle where it sticks up and you can very easily remove it, and it can also easily fall out by itself:


This might not have anything to do with it of course. But I did notice that the Armory nozzles were harder to push down and it seemed like the spray wasn't always coming out at the same rate. It also seems like the floaty nozzle was clogging more often than the other style was. There were also times where after spraying for about ten seconds, the Armory nozzle became impossible to push down. It had to be turned a few rotations before it could be compressed again. Not sure what the heck the deal with that was!

Puster Supporting Member of TMP28 Aug 2017 11:01 p.m. PST

I found that many cans clog when you do not spray horizontal. I started to NOT spray from above but rather swap the model on the side for another round of spraying, and now many cans are usable for several years (until empty, actually).

I recently used a spray that I did not use for five years and it worked fine. I do shake all cans for three mins at least, though. Probably the only sport left to me…

GW sprays are imho usually the most robust – these can be used any direction without spraying the free (turned around) later. For black/white basing I only use these…

ced110608 Sep 2017 5:48 a.m. PST

When you buy primer from a hobby store, it may have been sitting on the shelf for a *long* time.

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