Saturday, February 11, 2017

Reaper Master Series Bones paint review

I'm trying, desperately, to spend less money on hobby stuff this year. So far I've been pretty good about not adding too much to the lead pile.

One thing I DID get recently was the set of Reaper Master Series Bones paints that came out last year. I had avoided getting these for a while because I already have all of the normal Reaper MSP paints and Reaper MSP HD paints, so I didn't think it was really necessary.

Eventually, my collecting OCD got to me though and I just had to have them. The "story" with these paints is that they are supposed to be very similar to Reaper MSP but with a slightly different formula to make them stick better to unprimed Bones models. I usually prime my models with Gesso anyway, but I used this as an excuse to buy them! After all, I don't need any more colors... but a new formula? What can I say, I'm a sucker!

There are 54 colors in the set. It is a nice bright palette.

I figured a good way to test them out would be to compare the paint adhesion on unprimed Bones models for some similar colors. I washed up some Bones figs that have been lygin around, and got them ready to go.

First up was a pair of zombies. I painted one with undiluted Uniform Brown, MSP 9127. The other was painted with Ruddy Flesh, MSP Bones 9441. Here are the results.

There didn't seem to be much of a difference to me at all. I'm not sure if this is because I made a point to wash these models with hot soap and water, which I usually don't do.

I tried the test again but with diluting the paint 1:1 with water. I know the issue with Bones models usually happens when the paint is thinned, so I thought I would see more of a difference here.

As it turned out, not so much. Here is the original MSP painted model, both undiluted and watered down 1:1

And here is the MSP Bones painted model

And together...

This was disconcerting! Pretty much no difference at all regardless of whether I thinned the paint or not.

I KNOW that I've had problems with Vallejo Game Color sticking to unprimed Bones. So I repeated the exercise with a couple of zombies. One got VGC Cadmium Skin, and the other got MSP Bones Warrior Flesh.

Hmm... at this point I was thinking it must be the fact that I had washed these so well before painting, because I wasn't having any issues with paint adhesion.

So I grabbed a couple of unwashed models, stuck them onto bases, and...

Well, I guess I did not need to buy these after all! Haha... oh well, I am a bit of a pint addict. I love collecting paint almost as much as I like collecting minis.

The problem is that I have more paint than I can ever use. In addition to many craft paints, I've got a bunch of Citadel/GW paints, and the entire ranges of Vallejo Game Color, Model Color, Panzer Aces, Model Air, and Game Air, Reaper MSP, and Privateer Press P3 paints. I also have some more obscure ranges like the old Adikolor paints and the newer Scale 75 Scalecolor paints. How many of these can I realistically use?

I usually end up sticking with one range for the most part. For the past couple of years it's been Reaper. I really like that the Reaper paints have some flow improver and drying retarder mixed in with them, because I love Vallejo but the one issue I had with them is that I always ended up having to add some drying retarder to them or they would dry out on the pallete before I could use what I had poured out. Reaper has this already in the mix, so it saves me a step. Vallejo does tend to give better one coat coverage with a lot of colors, so you pick your poison I guess. I could probably have saved several hundred dollars if I would just get with the times and learn to use a wet palette! But what fun would that be, compared to buying a few hundred more paints... ;)

The one paint range that I really would love to get (my "white whale") is the Foundry color paint range. I have heard that they have great coverage. They are an expensive range though, so I've held off for now. After all, my P3 paints and Scalecolors have never even been used, and I've had the P3 paints for years! Fortunately they come in good containers and won't dry out like the damn Citadel paints. Grr....

Anyway, as far as the original topic - Reaper Master Series Bones Paints... I like them, they are just like Reaper MSP paints as far as I can tell, and I'd consider the palette to be a good "starter set" if you want to try Reaper paints. But if you already have the whole Reaper line and are looking for these to solve any problems you've had painting Bones models, I can't say that I see enough a a difference to warrant getting them. They are new colors, and I couldn't fund an exact match for any of the Bones colors in my original MSP paints. That being said, there are close enough colors that I don't think they fill any serious "gaps" in the original palette. One thing I thought was odd was the amount of flesh tones in the set. Out of 54 paints, there were 7 flesh tones! Not that this is a good or bad thing, I was just surprised to see it.

Overall, very nice paints, but nothing magical. If I had to pick just one set of Reaper paints, I'd probably go for the full set of HD colors. Now, I have some Bones models I have to go finish painting!

1 comment:

  1. Hey, Nice review. Do one for the Scale 75 paints. I want to buy the Color Scale set, but want to see some results first. I did buy the Elven small set when we went to the figure show, I used a few of the colors, they were good, but they are all blues and blue-ish colors. I'd love to see the greens and earth tones too.

    As or Reaper, I didn't know they had a retarder in them. Good to know. I like my MSD HD paints as well. Lately I use them, my new Citadel paints, Life Color and I airbrush with Life Color, Tamiya (I never use a brush with Tamiya), Model Air and Ammo of Mig. These are my go to. I definitely like the Scale 75 though. Try the Scale 75 on unprimed Bones next!

    See you on the Urban Mat Battle Field soon!