Good start with the painting, the deck looks great and has one big advantage,... not having to mask the wood!
I change my mind about the Akagi everyday. Mostly I think about how I don't really have the time and how I should really get my docket cleared a little more. But then I see that price and that underside PE (you know what a PE junkie I am) and think, "Hmmm, maybe..." I've kinda settled on the idea that if given the kit and PE for an official build log (like this one), I'll build her... but if I buy everything myself, I'll wait a while. Of course, I may change my mind about that tomorrow.
I just got back from my out of town at my dad's where we sealed the deck. It all went beautifully and looks great. Now I have to put on the wash and dull coat, so I hope to have that posted by Sunday.
A big and painful monkey wrench was thrown in the works when on Tuesday I had to get rushed to the ER by ambulance because of a 6mm (1/4") kidney stone. It's the only kidney stone I've ever had and the pain was excruciating and my vision was blurring. I'll spare the details, but long story short, the doctors all agreed that I should try to see if it'll pass on its own before surgery, so I've got some major pain meds until then. Because of the uncertain nature of all this, I'll try my best to stay on target with my updates but if I fall behind a few days, I hope you'll forgive me.
So anyway, if all goes according to plan, the big deck tutorial is coming Sunday.
And Mark, you got a deal, boss! You are the man!
Hi Mark and DT, thanks for the kind words and well wishes. They always mean a lot.
Here are the steps for preparing the Kongo's deck.
As explained in previous installments, I like to seal thin wood products for three reasons:
1.) To keep the wood from getting mold, discoloration, or cracking over the years.
2.) To protect it from the adhesive used to glue it on to the ship.
3.) To keep the wash from soaking into the wood and allowing it to only bring out the engraved details.
We tried a bunch of different sealing items and came down to three: Sherwin Williams Sanding Sealer (brush on), Tamiya gloss clear coat spray (!), Valspar Premium Enamel. Out of the three, the Valspar turned out the best for staying close to the original wood color. Here is a photo with the three in comparison on a scrap piece of wood. In the photo, the Valspar looks close to the Tamiya (middle), but in real life, worked much better at staying true to the deck color.
While I would have preferred a gloss seal, the satin seal ended up working well for my process.
The pieces were taped down on a very low adhesion tape to minimize curling and blowing away from the spray. The tape is low adhesion to keep the deck from getting destroyed on removal.
After the deck is sealed, it's time for the wash. I like to use a water based product called The Detailer, black. There is also a brown color that is useful for bringing out different effects (as seen on my Mikasa deck), but with this deck being made of wood, I really only needed one wash color. The Detailer can be lightened by simply thinning it out with water.
The Detailer is applied over the surface and after it's allowed to dry, it can be wiped off the top surface with a damp Q-Tip, leaving the darker wash in between the planks- the right area of the deck shown here has had the Detailer removal begun on the right side...
Wipe off enough to make the deck and crevices the shade you want it to be. Since this kit depicts the Kongo as she appeared in the Battle off Samar, the deck will be a little grubbier from all of her constant firing at those pesky destroyers of Taffy 3. So I've left a few darker spots here and there.
The top picture is with the Detailer applied, the bottom is with the excess wiped off.
After getting the deck to how I wanted it, a coat of Tamiya dull coat spray is put on to seal it all in and make everything nice and flat. Compare this picture with the earlier picture of the decks being sealed. Note how much more visible the planking is in this picture...
It's very hard to capture the subtle differences between wood with the wash and without, but this picture shows it fairly well. The piece of wood in the top right is the spare square that came with the deck. It has been sealed, but no wash applied. A close look shows the planks on the washed wood "popping" a little more, along with some of the darkening from all of the gun fire and smoke. This effect is more visible in real life.
That's it for deck preparation. The next step is gluing the deck to the model, but first I have to put a wash and dull coat on the hull. More to come when that process is complete.