Friday, 17 August 2018

VMS Black Track Pro Vs Friulmodel M113 Tracks

With VMS bringing out a new track blackening solution and the need to blacken the tracks for the AIFV it seemed a perfect time today to do a little review for you. The stuff is called black track pro and comes in two bottles, an activating bath and blackening bath. Both bottles have good instructions on them but it's best to watch VMS own video which is excellent and very informative. In fact the video also covers construction of white metal tracks as well as final weathering too.

As with any blackening solution preparation is key so after washing the tracks in soapy water and drying them I followed the video and brushed the tracks thoroughly with styrene glue, any will do be it tamiya extra thin or VMS own glue. The key here is to be thorough. You can then dry the tracks with a hair dryer to make sure all the glue has evaporated. Also minimal handling of the tracks with bare hands is a must.

So in a suitable container I poured all of the activating bath in followed by the tracks. I then agitated the tracks with a brush to remove any air bubbles and turned the tracks after 10 minutes. A total of 20 minutes fully submerged is needed here. An important feature of this system I think is that the activating bath is reusable, you just pour it back into the bottle after use. A very cost effective touch which I like. After 20 minutes the tracks are rinsed under a running tap and dried with a hair dryer.

Sat in the activator the tracks don't look to be doing much at all but in fact they do change colour very slightly and obviously are primed as it were for the blackening bath during the next stage. 

The Blackening bath is actually a concentrate so you will need a suitable beaker or similar to measure out 50 ml of the solution. Then boil the kettle and add 200 ml of hot water to it. Pour into a container and add the tracks. You will see almost immediately that the solution reacts with the tracks and it all starts fizzing. Again using a brush agitate the tracks as you will see a white deposit form on the tracks. The tracks only need to be in the solution for 5 to 6 minutes. Again you remove the tracks and rinse under a tap. 

With this being a concentrate it's very cost effective and you can make 1000 ml of this which works out at four pairs of tracks. Pretty good when you consider most if not all other blackening solutions are one use only. 

Once rinsed you will see a brown deposit on the tracks, this is normal and is easy to remove with an old toothbrush. I found dipping the brush in water occasionally helped to remove the deposit much easier. 

With the deposits all brushed off and after a blast with a hair dryer you are left with a really nice and even blackened effect on the tracks. 

I'm very impressed with the final result, a very even and pleasing colour of the tracks is very easy to achieve and looks super realistic. Also the solutions do not stink to high heaven when you use them. For me also the fact that you can re use the activating bath & that the blackening bath is concentrated makes for a very cost effective way of sorting your metal tracks out, without having to buy a new bottle every time you have tracks to blacken. 

Highly recommended, again another innovative and useful product from VMS. You can see the video on the VMS website or here, 

No comments:

Post a Comment