The Vallejo AFV Painting System
has been producing some of the finest quality acrylic paints and finishes to the hobby and craft world since the 1990’s. With thousands of products now all geared toward the modern day modeler, Vallejo continues to be a consistent bench mark in the industry and continues to be on the front lines with new innovative products that are sure to help everyone.
The AFV Painting Systems from Vallejo
are complete sets of paints and weathering products designed to give contrast to any build by using different shadings of colors to manipulate light and shadow to increase the depth resulting in a more realistic outcome to the finished model.
The AFV Painting Systems consist of the four sets of paint along with two weathering sets aimed to support two paint sets each. Each of the painting system sets are designed to be a complete set of paints to adequately prime, paint and seal any model within the scope of the individualized set color format. The complete sets are as follows:
AFV Painting System
- Dunkelgrau German Dark Grey
- Dunkelgelb German Dark Yellow
- US Army Olive Drab
- Russian Green 4BO
AFV Weathering System
- Weathering Set For Yellow/Grey Vehicles
- Weathering Set For Green Vehicles
The Dunkelgrau German Dark Grey Painting System
- Model Air #601 Grey Surface Primer
- Model Air #050 Light Grey
- Model Air #052 German Grey
- Model Air #053 Dark Sea Green
- Model Air #054 Dark Grey Blue
- Model Air #522 Satin Varnish
The Russian Green 4BO Painting System
- Model Air #609 Russian Green Primer
- Model Air #018 Camouflage Black Green
- Model Air #017 Russian Green
- Model Air #223 Green
- Model Air #225 Light Green
- Model Air #522 Satin Varnish
The Dunkelgelb German Dark Yellow Painting System
- Model Air #604 German Dark Yellow Primer
- Model Air #025 Dark Yellow
- Model Air #028 Sand Yellow
- Model Air #027 Light Brown
- Model Air #075 Sand
- Model Air #522 Satin Varnish
The Weathering Set For Yellow/Grey Vehicles
- Model Color #822 German Camouflage Black Brown
- Model Color #976 Buff
- Model Color #985 Hull Red
- Model Wash #522 Wash for German Yellow
- Model Wash #515 Wash for German Grey
- #233 Pigment Binder
- #0104 Pigment
Giving the sets a try
At first glance the New Vallejo Painting and Weathering Systems are packaged in an attractive end opening box. Inside the box the paints are secured in a plastic tray. The paints appear to be small as they are 8 fl.oz. bottles however the process of the system makes up for the size. A small amount is needed from each bottle to gain the effects presented by Vallejo with their Painting and Weathering Systems. The primer and the satin varnish will be used more than any others as the two will be used for coverage of the entire model.
After inspecting each set I thought it would be a good idea to set up a couple of test samples to see how these work. As you would guess, the Model Air Paints contained in these sets are what we have come to expect from Vallejo. There is no thinning required when using the Model Air Paints, just point and shoot. The coverage is nice and the colors are typical to the various genre of themes.
Starting with the Russian 4BO Set, I followed the instructions on the back of the package to test the paints. I wanted to try out the paints not only on the test sheet but on an actual part. Grabbing 3 plate sections from two German Panzers and on rear plate from a T-34/76 I mirrored the techniques on these parts. At the top of the test cards I would only spray a fairly uniform pattern to show the gradient color of the sets.
First thing to do was to primer the entire part and sheet with the kit supplied primer. The primer went on clean and smooth. With a quick clean up I moved right into the base shadowing color, Camouflage Black Green. This color is to be sprayed as pre-shading into the corners and around panel lines. This will help give depth to the project. Again, the Model Air color sprayed excellent.
Moving forward I loaded the airbrush with the Russian Green color. Paying attention to the deep corners again and then bringing the color further out into the open panel sections. The depth begins to show at this point of the painting. There is now a shadow line around the popped up features and into the nooks and crannies. Being Vallejo acrylic these paint dry extremely fast and I can move right onto the next step, this time using Model Air #223 Green. In following the instruction the green is work onto the larger flat spaces, lightening the panels adding even more depth and even perspective of light.
The final step before sealing my work, I used Model Air Light Green to highlight some of the raised features. For this step I chose to hand pint the Light Green. Randomly picking which bolt head or other raised feature would get the treatment. Finally after a good amount of drying time, it was time to clear coat the project with Vallejo’s Satin Varnish, which is supplied in the kit,
I then tried out each set individually; checking consistency, color and how the product responds to being airbrushed. The three sets I have for this review all preformed basically the same. The paints were all ready to shoot out of the airbrush, with the exception of the two Model Color paints in the weathering set, but I will go over that in a moment. The color variations within each of the three paint set was nice, however, I thought the Model Air #053 Dark Sea Green and Model Air #054 Dark Grey Blue are a bit close on the coloring chart to make a significant difference when applied. This is easy to rectify by adding a drop of white or black to one or the other to slightly darken or lighten one of the paints. I am pleased with the results that can be obtained from these sets so far. On to the Weathering Set.
Now that the Test cards and test plates are painted, I turned my attention to the Weathering Set for Yellow/Grey Vehicles. As you can figure, this set would cover working with the Dunkelgelb and Dunkelgrau paint sets or any DAK or Panzer Grey Vehicles. Vallejo offers the alternative weathering set for Green vehicles to cover weathering of the Russian 4BO set and the Olive Drab Sets they offer.
In the Yellow/Grey Weathering set there is seven 8ml bottles; 3-Model Colors, 2-Washes, some pigment and a pigment binder. In following the instructions on the back you can paint and weather tracks for your AFV and create a variety of dusting effects. You apply the German Camo Black Brown to your track lengths first and let dry. While the tracks are drying with a small piece of sponge or a tiny chipping brush and begin applying some paint chipping using a combination of the German Camo Black Brown, Buff and Hull Red. This will show contrast in the chipping on the vehicle with rust chips with showing some of the undercoat primer.
Next there are two shades of washes. One is suggested to be used for the DAK vehicles whilst the other for Panzer Grey. These washes are from Vallejo’s Model Wash line. They are acrylic washes and work well for most applications. For more information on these Washes you can read my review from the link at the end of this review. For the Russian 4BO sample I chose Vallejo’s Wash for Green Vehicles from their Model Wash Line. I did not have the Olive Drab Set or the Weathering for Green Vehicles Sets and can only make the assumption that the green wash supplied with the set is the same from Model Wash Line. With a thin wash applied, which dry rather quickly, I turned back to the tracks and plates. By using the Buff and lightly airbrushing you can create dusting effects on you model. Once the light dusting is applied you can move onto the pigment application.
The Weathering Set contains a light earth tone pigment and a pigment fixer. The pigment can be applied without the fixer; this will give a light and dusty effect. For a thicker application, like in the corners and around protruding fixtures, you apply the pigment into the areas you want and then simply apply the fixer to the pigment to secure it to the surface. Finally if you mixt the pigment and the fixer and a drop or two of clear gloss varnish, this will make a nice wet effect.
After being able to test out the Vallejo AFV Painting Systems along with the Weathering Set I would have to say these a really nice sets for anyone looking to add depth and variation in coloring to the models. As mention the quantity seems a bit small with the 8ml bottles but this is made up in volume with 5 colors in each set. Each one of the paints works with the other to cover the model sufficiently. I feel if you follow the instructions and you paint with light even coats there is no reason that you would not be able to paint 3 if not 4 average size models such as a something in the Pz.III or IV size range. In closing, these individualized sets are an excellent addition to anyone’s bench. The colors are sufficiently in the color range for the vehicles they are intended to be used on and the pricing if more than fair.