Washing Day

Posted by Matt Ragan | Posted in ,

Today I decided to make some "Magic Wash" for a few elements of my Imperial Fists (but mainly for my Imperial Guard and other painting projects). I will use the wash for the "rubber" joints in the Marine armor, neck flanges, and to pick out the details on the chest Aquila (eagles). I will also be using a lot of this on my Imperial Guard vehicles so I don't want to buy small little bottles.

The formula I used was derived from ideas give to me by this blog post: The Painting Corps: LBursley's Wash Recipe. My problem was, I'm a penny pincher. I wanted to use Future because it's cheap and because Future is a key ingredient for airbrushing and weathering vehicles!

1) Pledge with Future. I had to drive all around Lewisville to find this. At last I found it at Wal-Mart! Apparently Albertson's and Tom Thumb no longer stock it here in my home town. Cost, about $5.

2) Tap water. Cost, free.

3) Black Ink. Cost, about $5.

4) A 50ml squeeze bottle with a dropper type nozzle (this pic is 35ml but you get the idea). Cost, about $1.

1) Fill the squeeze bottle halfway with tap water
2) Fill the squeeze bottle up to the top of the main body with Future (i.e. 1:1 ratio or "equal parts future and water")
3) Use the ink's dropper to measure out 15 drops of black ink into the mix. If you use a different company for Ink or a different size bottle, your formula may be different. White primer some test figures. Start with 10 drops of ink, then wash a figure. Then add more 5 drops at a time until you find what you're happy with. "Soft Black" should give you a fairly dark line, but not drastically change the tint of the rest of the mini (it will somewhat of course, but the white primer shouldn't be darker than a very light gray).
4) Shake vigorously, let it sit for a few minutes, and shake some more
5) Use (I have a nearly lifetime supply of all the "Soft Black" wash I'll ever need, and now I have Future on hand for my vehicle projects).

Some people don't like Future because it leaves a glossy coating on the miniatures... that's what Testor's Dull Cote is for.

Here are some samples. The first is a Reaper Miniatures metal knight, white primer, and just washed (sloppily) with Soft Black. The second image is an old T-72 Model Tank of mine, showing the difference between a wash and not washed.

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