Airbrushing with Polly Scale acrylics?

What to do with all the Polly Scale acrylics I had kept since the 1980s? Can I still use them, and use them with my Badger airbrush?

The Internet gives some answers…

Starting with this thread on a forum…

Any tips on thinning or general use in airbrushes. Im using a Aztec 470.

They are similar to Model Master acryls in behavior since Polly Scale is made by Testors. They are fairly thin out of the bottle but will need further thinning. I recommend 70% alcohol for thinning. Remember the skim milk rule: paint should be the consistency of skim milk for proper spraying. This will be roughly 60% paint/40% thinner ratio and may need to lean towards a 50/50 ratio.


I generally thin initially to their suggested ratio, then add more if it appears needed. I have generally found that it is not, but I use a gravity fed airbrush, and that makes a difference.

Also, I disagree with Andy: I recommend using only distilled or deionized water to thin Polly Scale. I did some compatibility testing on various paints several years ago, and repeated the process with Polly Scale last year. Polly Scale paints are not compatible with most common alcohols such as isopropyl, ethyl, and methyl (denatured). 70% isopropyl may have enough water in it to act as a “buffering” cosolvent, but I’ve always had great results with just distilled water.


During the weekend I had decided to hand paint my Corsair while testing how to properly dilute the paint with distilled water. It had worked out fine so I decided to go with Richard Harmer’s F4U-2 Corsair number 15 using this as a reference.

Colorized version of F4U-2 Corsair No. 15 I did…

I had opened all the bottles I had, and everything looked fine except one bottle.

I had forgotten how these paints were a breeze to work with. I had used them on this Otaki Corsair and this Otaki Hellcat in the 80s.

Intermission – Free shipping

Amazon knows my addiction. I was checking and got this add.

CDN$ 18.83 with free shipping,

How could I resist?

Very attractive price…

Free shipping…

Very good review here…

How could I resist?

I did!


One review on Amazon
I have always hated that green Japanese color so I decided to make this into a captured version. I was pleasantly surprised at the interior of this model it’s roomy and a good amount of detail for the money. It has enough room inside to add some of your own touches, I added a radar unit and a new radio set up behind the seat. This was a fun model to build as I was able to take some liberties with it. There is a decal set available for the captured version but I decided to leave it alone as I anxious to get going on another kit. This would have gotten five stars but it was the worse fitting Tamayi I’ve ever done. The fuselage fit poorly, the wings fit poorly (had to do a lot of sanding) and the cockpit was molded poorly to boot, I had to remind myself that I was working on a Tamiya, not a Revell…but it’s well worth the money and fun to build, I would most certainly do it again.