Has anyone had any problems with fine tiny cracks appearing on the tails and fins of reproduction fish with flexible fins? I let each coat of primer and paint dry for several days before I gloss. The fish that have rigid fins (non-flex resin) are fine...no cracks. This doesn't always happen to every fish. I kinda think it has something to do with the base coat primer, which is a lacquer based paint, does not flex, while the water-based acrylic colors do flex. To add more problems, the gloss coat probably does not flex either. If the fish is handled and the fins are even just slightly bent, tiny cracks can appear. Anyone have these problems with flexible fins? What is the big deal with flexible fins? No one is suppose to touch them! You don't touch a piece of artwork. You look at it.
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I noticed the same thing yesterday, except mine are real fins. It sure is fun to try and bend them. I think my problem might be the choice of top coat or inexperiance in how to use it. Its lifetone two part 400, I think i would have to look at it. tried a fish that i sprayed with Gary bowen super fish gloss and it is fine, no cracking.
...the #1 gimmick in the fish repro industry!
Jeff, maybe I'm not doing things correctly, but I don't use any primer on repro fins. No primer on repros for that matter. They come with gel coat in place and no cleansing or anything is needed. So I guess the Primer is already on the main body.
Try using Triple Thick for your final gloss coat. Triple Thick is softer and does indeed "give" a bit. It pretty much seals up any cracks and they don't come back unless you bang the fins. Which, then you get the repair work - lol!
I have tried the triple thick because I have seen in the archives where you said its good stuff, care to help? my problem is when I use it, I can do three fish at once or two for that matter and one of them will get huge air bubbles to rise off of the fish. I do them the same way. Am I still putting it on to thick or am i not allowing enough time between coats 15min. Thanks for your help. and I let fish dry at room temp for 3 weeks or more before I paint but I do coat 30mins after I paint. I don't like trying to rush things with fans. Im sure its in the archives but I don't want to Look. you can Email me if you like so my question doesn't take away from Jeff's.
I think flex fins are not the way to go.
Now, do they make finishing easier and less dusty? Yes But the trade off for ease in finishing is bendingand cracking paint AND CLEARCOAT.
I've seen people bend the fin IMMEDIATLY after being told they are flexible!
I Think a fish mount is a piece of art to be admired from a short distance(just a tad OVER arms length.)
There are no paints, Primers or clear coats that flex. They all get harder with age. Also the flex resin used for the fins hardens with age. i've had flexfins backed with veiling that turn to potato chips in several months.
My advice is to use general purpose resin for a durable long lsating and stable mount.