AR15.Com Archives
 ATACS Camo Hydro Dip
precisionpredators  [Member]
2/25/2012 8:03:24 PM
As I said I would. I did some dipping using ATACS Camo pattern.

I stripped down my Coyote 835 Mossy 12ga and dipped it. I did not dip my coyote choke as that goes in the barrel. I guess I could of just taped off the threads but I just chose not to. I bought the ATACS film from TWN and the film is better quality than the ebay film I got in wood grain and predator camo. When I ordered the film from TWN they tried to tell me my activator was not suited to their film and I really needed to use theirs. I passed and just used what I had. It worked just fine with no issues with activation.

The 835 was actually harder than the AR I did mainly because it was a lot dirtier so I had to scrub every part to get it good and clean. My AR was basically clean so cleaning it was easier. I used 220 sand paper to lightly sand the parts. I then I washed it off.

I then sprayed it with adhesion promoter and a clear primer this time. I sprayed the pieces with a tan base coat, This tan paint I was using was much more pale then the other can I had. It was better quality also and I only had a 4oz can of it and ran out when it came tot he red dot. I sprayed the red dot with Krylon Camo tan and it was a darker tan as you can see. It also gives you a good idea how slight changes to the base coat makes changes to the camo look.

During the dip this film from TWN is also slightly thicker and heavier it seems. After I dipped the parts and they dried I put them in the oven at 200F for 45min. When the came out I let them air cool and the film to tough seemed harder. I then applied 2 coats of Marine grade clear coat and one coat of dull clear coat. I then re-assembled it and test fired it.

The rolls you get from TWN are not marked "this side up" for dipping purposes and it does matter. Because I have been messing with this stuff I can tell but an easy way to test if unsure is to cut a small 4x4 section and lay it in the water. If it does not not start hydrating (wrinkling up) you then know to use the other side up when dipping. The wrong side will start oozing a clear film across the water around the edges.















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retroLS1  [Member]
2/25/2012 10:41:14 PM
Nice, looks great. Good job. What brand of base coat paint did you use if you don't mind me asking? I am going to be dipping some AR parts this week... Greatly looking forward to it.
precisionpredators  [Member]
2/26/2012 1:01:27 AM
Tan Paint

pihydrographics1@aol.com
(760) 680 9043
retroLS1  [Member]
2/26/2012 8:57:06 PM
Thanks. I have some film and a quart of activator from P.I. that I am going to try out. Sent an email to TWN about pricing and ordering film but nobody ever got back to me. Might check out Ozark's Hydrographics as well. What brand flat/dull clear coat did you use? I have a can of polyurethane satin clear from Minwax that I had recommended to me, but haven't tried it out yet. It won't be totally flat but I haven't found anything short of automotive-grade clear with flattening agents, like PPG etc.
precisionpredators  [Member]
2/27/2012 10:36:18 PM
Originally Posted By retroLS1:
Thanks. I have some film and a quart of activator from P.I. that I am going to try out. Sent an email to TWN about pricing and ordering film but nobody ever got back to me. Might check out Ozark's Hydrographics as well. What brand flat/dull clear coat did you use? I have a can of polyurethane satin clear from Minwax that I had recommended to me, but haven't tried it out yet. It won't be totally flat but I haven't found anything short of automotive-grade clear with flattening agents, like PPG etc.


You have to call TWN. A 3m roll is $40 or so + shipping. Quality automotive clear is all you need. I used it as my top coat. Just me but I would pass on the polyurethane until I had actually seen it used.

Go to this website and they can answer all your questions. They have a forum there and a firearm section

http://www.liquidconcepts.com/

Baywatch-Arms  [Member]
2/28/2012 12:51:08 PM
That turned out really nice.
Mike_P  [Team Member]
2/28/2012 2:09:23 PM
Did you use the spray can activator on the twn film? Or another brand?
LonelyRaven  [Member]
2/28/2012 3:43:00 PM
You really need some better photos then that! Too bad you're not in IL, I'd have taken care of ya.
precisionpredators  [Member]
2/28/2012 8:04:13 PM
Originally Posted By Mike_P:
Did you use the spray can activator on the twn film? Or another brand?


Spray can activator off ebay for like $13.00 4 oz can. I caught an auction and got a 8oz can i believe for $18.00 plus the shipping. A 4oz can goes a ways. TWN wants to sell you activator and they say to only use theirs.....what I had worked fine.

Originally Posted By LonelyRaven:
You really need some better photos then that! Too bad you're not in IL, I'd have taken care of ya.


Yes too bad....
Mike_P  [Team Member]
2/28/2012 9:01:06 PM
Originally Posted By precisionpredators:
Originally Posted By Mike_P:
Did you use the spray can activator on the twn film? Or another brand?


Spray can activator off ebay for like $13.00 4 oz can. I caught an auction and got a 8oz can i believe for $18.00 plus the shipping. A 4oz can goes a ways. TWN wants to sell you activator and they say to only use theirs.....what I had worked fine.



That's the stuff I've been using. I just picked up some TWN film and they kept trying to push their stuff on me. Catch is, I didn't really want to buy a spray gun and compressor just for this. So I've been winging it with the aerosol. How much did you apply to their film? I have only used other brands of film while perfecting my process and my understanding is their film can be finicky at times and sometimes requires higher temps or less soak time.

1967Camaro  [Member]
2/29/2012 2:15:07 PM
If you already have a compressor and a HVLP spray gun, buying their activator is really the way to go. I think is was a quart for like 25-30 bucks. Everything seemed to go fine for me with their film and if you follow the directions of other peoples videos everything went fine. Just make sure the film is the right side in the water. I found it pretty easy to tell as one side is duller than the other.
retroLS1  [Member]
2/29/2012 7:42:35 PM
Originally Posted By precisionpredators:

You have to call TWN. A 3m roll is $40 or so + shipping. Quality automotive clear is all you need. I used it as my top coat. Just me but I would pass on the polyurethane until I had actually seen it used.

Go to this website and they can answer all your questions. They have a forum there and a firearm section

http://www.liquidconcepts.com/



Thanks. I got some pricing from TWN in my email inbox, going to give them a call some time next week to order some accessory kits. I used some of the polyurethane on a sample piece I dipped and so far it looks good. Going to pick up some good automotive grade clear though. I need to pick up some more decent paint too as the Rustoleum camo paint I tried as a basecoat did not work out that well. Liquid Concepts has a good forum - I've been lurking on there for a little while now. Lots of good info there.

Mike_P  [Team Member]
2/29/2012 7:56:09 PM
Originally Posted By retroLS1:
Originally Posted By precisionpredators:

You have to call TWN. A 3m roll is $40 or so + shipping. Quality automotive clear is all you need. I used it as my top coat. Just me but I would pass on the polyurethane until I had actually seen it used.

Go to this website and they can answer all your questions. They have a forum there and a firearm section

http://www.liquidconcepts.com/



Thanks. I got some pricing from TWN in my email inbox, going to give them a call some time next week to order some accessory kits. I used some of the polyurethane on a sample piece I dipped and so far it looks good. Going to pick up some good automotive grade clear though. I need to pick up some more decent paint too as the Rustoleum camo paint I tried as a basecoat did not work out that well. Liquid Concepts has a good forum - I've been lurking on there for a little while now. Lots of good info there.



I didn't really like the Rustoleum either over SEM self etching primer. I've had much better luck with the Krylon products. Their camo khaki has worked pretty well. I'm still looking for alternatives to both though.

As far as clear. I'm still trying to find a good auto quality as well. So far I've been using some Krylon matte finishing spray. It's worked pretty well and what I want flat, looks relatively flat. My only concern with it is that it's only advertised as "moisture resistant" and I want something I know will protect the finish no matter what.
precisionpredators  [Member]
2/29/2012 8:23:56 PM
The moisture issue why I went to a Marine quality clear coat, then top dress it with a dull clear to take the Gloss off.

The TWN film is fairly simple to work with, I let the film tell me when its ready then I use a steady sweeping motion, not too fast to spray the activator. It will also tell you as it will "take off" in about 15-30 seconds then I dip. I did a few test dips using a couple of my empty skoal cans. Better to waste a little than really mess up a bigger piece on on a weapon. By just watching the film it really will tell you when its ready. I just use a water temp that neither feels warm nor cool. The warmer it is the faster it will take off on you.
Mike_P  [Team Member]
2/29/2012 9:00:27 PM
Originally Posted By precisionpredators:
The moisture issue why I went to a Marine quality clear coat, then top dress it with a dull clear to take the Gloss off.

The TWN film is fairly simple to work with, I let the film tell me when its ready then I use a steady sweeping motion, not too fast to spray the activator. It will also tell you as it will "take off" in about 15-30 seconds then I dip. I did a few test dips using a couple of my empty skoal cans. Better to waste a little than really mess up a bigger piece on on a weapon. By just watching the film it really will tell you when its ready. I just use a water temp that neither feels warm nor cool. The warmer it is the faster it will take off on you.


Which tan were you using prior to the Krylon? And out of curiousity what brand clears are you using? Aerosol or spray gun?
retroLS1  [Member]
3/1/2012 12:29:19 PM
Originally Posted By Mike_P:I didn't really like the Rustoleum either over SEM self etching primer. I've had much better luck with the Krylon products. Their camo khaki has worked pretty well. I'm still looking for alternatives to both though.

As far as clear. I'm still trying to find a good auto quality as well. So far I've been using some Krylon matte finishing spray. It's worked pretty well and what I want flat, looks relatively flat. My only concern with it is that it's only advertised as "moisture resistant" and I want something I know will protect the finish no matter what.


I'll try out the Krylon for a cheap tan. I used some white "One Shot" sign painting paint that I use for lettering and pinstriping for a second sample piece. I was doing an urban digital camo that needed white as a base coat. The film definitely adhered better to it, but I didn't let the paint cure long enough I don't think because any time you touched it, the film smudged/blurred a bit because the paint was still pretty wet (I dipped after about an hour of curing - will probably wait 4-6 next time with that paint since it's an enamel). All trial and error really. Exciting and frustrating at the same time haha

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