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Ju88 Weathering

In most cases, I tend to weather WWII-period aircraft quite heavily. After all, these machines were extensively used during that time, participating in numerous missions, often in adverse weather conditions, and taking off and landing on unpaved airstrips. I imagine that in many cases, there was little time to keep them clean and tidy.

I always strive to find references that will help me finish the model as realistically as possible, and that includes weathering. Unfortunately, in this particular case, I had a difficult time finding any photos or hints that would assist with that. So, the only option left was to rely on my experience and common sense to guide the weathering process.


Weathering


Filters & Chipping

Due to the specific base painting process I used, the surfaces ended up with quite an interesting finish, showcasing all the shades, blemishes, and imperfections of the paint. To further emphasis this, I began weathering with the application of filters. I applied them locally, focusing on certain panels and especially on the underbelly, since it was covered in a single color.


For the first time, I created filters myself. I used four different colors of oil paints (Engine Grease, Cream Brown, Light Flesh Tone, and Dark Rust from the Abteilung set). Each color was heavily diluted with Fast Dry Thinner and then applied to certain panels with a flat brush. I applied just enough filter to wet the surface and ensured it was spread evenly over the panel. Once touch dry, I blended it in with a clean flat brush. After assessing the results, I repeated the procedure if necessary.


In the next stage, I added scratches and scuffs. First, I created a lighter shade color mix from the base color and then used a brush with a fine tip to add the paint to certain areas where chips tend to appear. Next, using a dark color (A.MIG Acrylic Rubber & Tires), I brush-painted smaller marks inside some of the already painted scratches, giving them a more 3D look.


Then, I moved on to application with a sponge. Using the same colors, I added chipping on certain surfaces like the mid-section aft of the gondola or some protruding elements of the fuselage. Leading edges of the wings and front parts of the engine cowling were also sponge-chipped, but here additionally, I added scratches in matte aluminum color. Finally, all work was protected with a layer of gloss acrylic varnish.


General Washes

As a next step, I applied PLW Blue Grey wash over all surfaces of the aircraft. I did this to blend the base colors of RLM76 and RLM75 mottles together and slightly darken the appearance of the paint. The application was straightforward: first, I spread the product over a section of the model, and then, after a few minutes, I removed the excess using cotton pads and moved on to the next section.


To introduce a very soft layer of dirt and grime, I used Starship and Neutral washes from A.MIG. I applied them using a technique similar to creating splatter marks: first, I dipped a brush in the product, then wiped off the excess with a kitchen towel, and finally, moved a toothpick through the bristles of the brush to create splashes of the product. I always test this technique first to check the effect—how many splashes are generated, their size, and transparency—before applying it to the model. Starship wash, with its darker color, was used mainly on the underside and more in the central parts of the fuselage, as well as on the inner parts of the wings. Neutral wash, on the other hand, was used mostly on the top surfaces. After a few minutes, I started to blend it using clean brushes. All work was again protected, this time with a layer of semi-gloss acrylic varnish.


In this stage, I wanted to introduce another layer of dirt on the upper surfaces of the wings, this time using the dot painting technique, which is mainly used and known in the AFV modeling world. Although I've successfully used it with some of my previous builds, this time it turned out differently, mainly due to the base color of this aircraft. RLM76 is a relatively light color compared to others used in the camouflage of American or German machines during WWII. It turned out that adding this kind of effect on such a light color was too stark and evident compared to what I wanted to achieve. In the end, I decided to skip this stage for this particular build. To increase the contrast of some elements, I applied Blue Grey PLW wash on most of the hatches and openings, while shadows were intensified with black wash.


Oils

At this stage, I was already quite happy with how the weathering was shaping up, but I felt that I needed some additional dirt and variety between panel lines, especially on the sides and top parts of the model. To address this, I decided to use oils. I selected two colors - Black and Starship Bay Sludge from the A.MIG Oilbrushers palette.


Using a small brush, I added tiny amounts of the paint close to the panel lines. It's important to note that for vertical panel lines, the paint was always added behind them. Then, using a fine-tipped brush, I removed the excess paint, and with a round brush and just a tiny amount of odorless thinner, I blended the rest of the paint in.


In the following step, I used Industrial Dirt and Earthy Grime oil washes for general grime and staining on the wing roots. The washes were applied on the wet surface, and then, using a round brush, I moved them around to create certain patterns and accumulations. Once dry to the touch, I lightly blended them in using a clean flat brush. Finally, a layer of gloss acrylic varnish was applied.


Streaking Effects & Spills

Now it was time to add dirt and filth in places where it is most prominently dragged behind due to the movement of the air over the surfaces—namely the flaps, ailerons, horizontal stabilizers, and engine nacelles just behind the landing gear bays. For this, I used products from the A.MIG Streaking set. First, I applied it perpendicularly to the airflow, and then, using brushes moistened in odorless thinner, I dragged the product aft. Depending on the brush, the amount of thinner used, and the time, different effects are possible.


The next day, I proceeded with spills and leaks for which I used two products. I started with the black wash as a base, and then on top of that, I added Starship Streaking product, which generated a more interesting result.


Moving onto the top surfaces, I added another layer of dirt and filth around the roots of the wings, this time using Black and PLW Neutral Brown washes. These were applied on the dry surface and then spread with a brush moistened in the odorless thinner.


Exhausts Stains

For the exhaust stains, I used three different color mixes. First, I airbrushed X-18 + XF-10 (5:3), which was the darkest mix. Next, XF-1 + XF-57 (5:4) was added inside the already airbrushed pattern, and lastly, XF-57 alone was used. Considering that the exhausts are located on the sides of the nacelles, there is not easy access for airbrushing, but it is manageable. At the final stage of assembling everything together, I will revisit the exhaust stains to add pigments and oil and fuel stains. For now, all surfaces have received a layer of semi-gloss acrylic varnish.


Other Weathering Effects

Next, I added the effect of wheel splatter marks, which are mainly visible on the engine nacelles just behind the landing gear bays. First, I used Earth product to depict older and dried mud and dirt, and then on top of that, I added Streaking Grime for Panzer Grey. Both products were applied using a brush and toothpick. Any unnecessary splashes were removed with a brush moistened in odorless thinner, and the rest was slightly blended in, allowing some time to dry.


Later on, I attended to the engine cowling flaps. I began with the application of Industrial Dirt, and on top of that, Earthy Grime oil washes. Both products were spread accordingly and then blended.


Finally, I examined the entire model, and if any corrections were needed, I applied them. This included painting small details and adding missing weathering effects in certain places. Lastly, I applied the final layer of varnish—a mix of matte and gloss (3:1) lacquers—and the model was ready for final assembly.


Summary

I'm very pleased with the results of the weathering process. It effectively showcases the heavy usage of the machine and the effects of operating in various weather conditions. Along the way, I tried and learned a few new techniques and ways of using different products, especially oils. Now it's time for the final stage of the build, where everything comes together. Expect another post soon! For now, check the gallery below showing the final weathering effects.




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