Skarach's world

Challenger 1 Mk 3 build – Part 9:Painting (base coat)


Primer: Tamiya “Fine Surface Primer” spray can

Base coat: A mixture of 90% Tamiya acrylics (XF-59 “Desert Yellow”, XF-57 “Buff”, XF-19 “Sky Grey” in a 4:1:1 ratio) and 10% Tamiya X-22 Clear in Tamiya X-20A thinner (2/3 paint mixture to 1/3 thinner) [1]. For the second coat I lightened it a little bit with a ratio of XF-59:XF-57:XF-19 of 3:2:1.

I did consider adding some kind of texture paint to simulate the non slip coating on parts of the turret and hull of the vehicle. However, the consensus on at least one forum post seemed to be that this would be unnecessary at this scale (a different story for the Challenger 2 I think). So, I was happy to skip this step.


1. Modelling the Challenger 1 and 2 MBT and Variants, Graeme Davidson and Pat Johnston, Osprey Publishing, 2006. (link)

3 thoughts on “Challenger 1 Mk 3 build – Part 9:Painting (base coat)

  1. Pingback: Iwata HP-M1 airbrush | Skarach's world

  2. how do you use tamiya with so little thinner? I have to use around 50% thinner at 20 psi.

    • Hi. Yes, nowadays I would not use such a ratio. I think I must have got it from Tamiya themselves (see But for years now I have been using such paint (or the similar Mr.Hobby) in a ratio of 1:2 paint:thinner, spraying at 10-15 psi and quite close (< 10 cm) to the subject. This almost always leaves a smooth surface, with little or no coarse texture due to premature paint drying, which was a problem I sometimes got. Now, I always use the Mr.Color levelling thinner to further prevent this from happening.

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