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FEATURE
The Story Behind Miracle Masks
Merlin
Staff MemberSenior Editor
AEROSCALE
#017
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Posted: Friday, November 30, 2007 - 10:32 AM UTC


I bet a lot of us have had a bright idea! You know the score... it''ll be the "next BIG THING in modelling"... Now, here''s the real thing! Our very own Mal Mayfield (Holdfast) gives us the low-down on just what goes into creating and marketing an idea - plus a full How-To on using his innovative Miracle Masks.

Link to Item

If you have comments or questions please post them here.

Thanks!
TedMamere
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Moselle, France
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Posted: Friday, November 30, 2007 - 08:51 PM UTC
Hi Rowan!

Wow, great stuff, thanks for sharing!

Mal (alias Mick Marshall ), good luck for your business! I hope I can use one of your set of masks for a future project of mine. I also wanted to paint rather than decal the markings on my models since a long time.

All the best!

Jean-Luc
Holdfast
Staff MemberPresident
IPMS-UK KITMAKER BRANCH
#056
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Posted: Sunday, December 02, 2007 - 01:13 AM UTC
Hi jean-Luc
Yes painting on markings has been a goal of mine for quite some time. I'm sure that there are clever modellers out there who can actually cut concentric circles from masking tape but it sure defeated me Frankly I was overjoyed at the results, particularly as the ones in the article are actually cut with the blunt blade that I mentioned. If they sell then I will be looking to buy a much more capable machine then who knows were this can go
I'm working on Luftwaffe markings at the moment and although I have cracked the basic cross, even with black outline, the swastika is proving troublesome. Well not troublesome to cut but at the moment but, to have a thin black outline, you will have to paint black, mask, paint white, mask then black again. This works well but would, I imagine, but many potential buyers off trying it. I do think however that, once tried, there's no going back to decals I am looking at producing rub down transfers, for stencilling and those markings that are just too small for this system and I'm looking at how I can produce nose art That's for the future though. I have some very interesting trials in the pipeline as well. One which will be of particular interest to Jackflash is masks for lozenge fabric (I was speaking to one of the guys from "Cross and Cockade" at Telford). This is not as easy as it first sounds but I have got up to 3 colours. Another area is, believe it or not, zimmerite, (anti magnetic mine paste for German AFV’s in WWII). More of that, on Armorama, if my trials are a success.
I have just had an e-mail from Garry Hatcher, editor of SAMI, and he likes the masks a lot. They will be reviewed in the January mag I also handed sample to Brett Green (Hyperthingy) and they will be reviewed there within the next few weeks. I handed out eight other samples for review at Telford, and there are no reviews, yet, in the 2 mags that I take (1 is SAMI and when Garry saw my masks he did say that he would like to have time to give them a proper review). I'm hoping that all the review samples will be treated the same way and will be out sometime after Christmas Getting the word out is proving to be the hardest part, but I'm confident that when it's out there the masks will start to sell
Anyway, Jean-Luc, let me know what you require and, the first lot anyway are free to you. (I do owe you and I'm sure that the results will get an airing here, on Aeroscale )
I'm actually beginning to think that the way forward is to offer a bespoke sevice rather than individual items or sets. I will do that anyway but I'm not sure that punters are picking that up.
Anyway, let me know what you require and thanks for fixing the link.
Mal
Grumpyoldman
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Posted: Sunday, December 02, 2007 - 10:37 AM UTC
Looks good Mal-Mick.
Good luck in your new venture into the business world.
_H_Dori
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England - East Anglia, United Kingdom
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Posted: Monday, December 03, 2007 - 12:45 AM UTC
Excellent stuff. I was only looking into Luftwaffe masks of this type last week, however now I will wait until yours are finished and ready to go.

Congratulations and good luck on your venture.

H
Holdfast
Staff MemberPresident
IPMS-UK KITMAKER BRANCH
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Posted: Monday, December 03, 2007 - 08:26 AM UTC
Thanks Dave, it is indeed scary, particularly as I have been there and crashed and burned I am now flying a Spitfire so no enemy (read Solicitor ) will be able to shoot me down
Howard.
If you have a particular aircraft in mind then I should be able to do the markings for you. The wing (upper and lower) are no problem and the same for the fuselage cross, as I have sussed the method for these. The Swastika is a different story but if your scheme has a simple black or black and white, no outer black line, then that would be easy too. I have just started on the numbers, but if you can let me know the number you want and any particular style that shouldn't be a problem.
What really takes the time, after drawing everything that is required is sorting out the pricing and getting everything onto the web site. I have worked out a method of pricing, using a spreadsheet, but I still have to input the data. Of course I could just make a wild stab at the pricing but then it would either be too expensive or cost me money
Like I said in my previous post I'm thinking that a bespoke service is the way to go. The problem with that though may be that I'm constantly drawing stuff on my PC. At least by drwaing up as much as I can, for each nation, I will have good start. Anyone fancy the snake on a desert Stuka in 1/24 scale that's one I'm working on.
Anyway Howard if you do want to take me up on providing a set of masks, for a particular scheme could I ask if you would drop into my website and ask on the forum please
I'm not trying to move any members from here the forum is just for quetions about Miracle Masks, I just want to see how it might work and to generate some interest.
Mal
_H_Dori
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Posted: Monday, December 03, 2007 - 11:47 PM UTC
Sounds good, thanks Mal.

I will drag out the sheet tonight and join the forum tomorrow if thats ok.

Thanks once again

H
Holdfast
Staff MemberPresident
IPMS-UK KITMAKER BRANCH
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Posted: Tuesday, December 04, 2007 - 06:51 AM UTC
Yep, cool I'm just looking at building a couple of easy kits to try out the Luftwaffe stuff, a Tamiya Fw 190A-3 and a bf 109E-3.
Mal
Holdfast
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Posted: Friday, December 28, 2007 - 08:51 AM UTC
Just to let you all know that I have effectively drawn up Luftwaffe crosses and swastikas. I need to really test them out and I have just started building some models for this. I have finished Howards request for markings for the Promodeller Dornier Do 215E-5 and that is on the web site. I still have to finish the instructions though.

If you take a look at my web site you will also see that I have also been busy working on USAF Stars and Bars I have managed to crack P-47 Thunderbolt checkered cowling masks, which I thought would be very difficult because of the compound curature of the cowl. I actually wanted thes for the Hasegawa 1/32 scale kit, which I've yet to trial them on, but they work wonderfully well on Tamiya's 1/48 kit. They will work on the Hasegawa 1/48 kit but the cowling is shorter, I don't think that you will notice One thing that I did realise when checking out the Tamiya kits checkered nose decals is that, virtually, all the checks are different sizes I have also drawn and test cut the Skull and Cross Bones nose art of Maj T Eaglestons P-47. When I trial cut the smallest Star and Bar it cut very nicely and, although I have yet to trial them an a model, a dry run showed that they should be very easy to use.

If there is any markings that you would like to see as a masking set then please let me know. My web site is http://www.freewebs.com/miraclemasks

Mal