Realistic Color for Chipped Paint


I am looking for a realistic iron color that would show up once paint has been chipped away from the surface of a tank or armor. Any suggestions on a paint and color that I could use would be appreciated.



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Something similar to a dark burnt umber might work; one that is very dark brown with a reddish-purple tinge to it. Whatever comes close to an old piece of wrought iron. It is what I’ve been using for small chips and scratches. At 1/35 it looks close enough for me.

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For bare iron I use AK Dark Tracks but you can mix your own with some dark grey and red brown until you get the shade you like.

Don’t forget that your chipping should reflect what was actually underneath. Was your tank primed like the Germans and their oxide? If so, you’d want some primer showing and only go to bare metal for very deep or heavily worn spots.

The OD on US vehicles was paint and primer all in one and was very very durable so it tended to fade rather than chip under normal wear conditions. The same goes for modern US CARC paints. The flip side to CARC paint is the stuff is so nasty that it’s only supposed to be repainted during overhauls in proper paint shops, so if there are spots of wear or chipping from damage, it’ll probably stay that way for a while in service.

UN vehicles tend to just have the white overpainted whatever the user’s base colour happens to be and it’s prone to wear as a result.

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I use Vallejo model color German camo black brown. It’s a very versatile colour which can be used for various different situations. I also like to add highlights to the chips with a lightened version of the original paint for a more dimensional effect.


Vellejo Rust and Chipping Effects is another option worth considering (click here).

Yes I’ve used that too Jim, good suggestion.

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And this is important. Chipped paint on an M113 hull is either going to be bright silver or a pale grey underneath, depending on how much time the metal has been exposed, since the M113 hull was aluminum, not steel.

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