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Mad Steve


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Afternoon Everyone :) 

With the upcoming Car GB, Darren asked if I could do a How To for Carbon Fibre decals.

Most modern race cars, and hypercars for that matter, have some level of Carbon Fibre (CF) construction and its nice to be able add some of that into your kits. If its just a few pieces, then its easy to do, but if we are talking cars like the Pagani Huayra or a La Ferrari which is about 90% CF, rather use a CF set sold specifically for those cars. 

Right then, stuff you'll need....

CF decal sheet, (Obviously :)) This is Tamiya, but you can use any you like, I just like the decals because they are easy to work with.


and the tools we'll be using


and yet more masking tape.20210222_133825.thumb.jpg.cf80386e43ea18495e0afe6975e3c753.jpg

Right, before we start any decaling, some prep work needs to be done...

Firstly, For this How To, we'll be using this... :) 


as it doesn't actually have very much CF decals (visible that is) 

So, Prep work (basically the usual painting prep) 

- sand, clean and prime area (in the Porsche's case, the entire base plate)

-Airbrush or Rattlecan Semi Gloss Black, Brush painting isn't advisable as the decals will show every line left by the brush. 

- once dry, sand down with 1500 / 2000 grit until smooth 

- brush and clean area, ready for decaling. 


These are the two areas we will be decaling

The rear diffuser (yeees, stevieboy didn't clean the area properly, why all those bumps are there)


and the front lip


The basic idea is a very simple one, we are going to use masking tape, to make templates. Those templates then get used to cut out the CF decals

So firstly, Making tape over the area to decal


Then place that masking tape onto the decal sheet 


and cut it out, I find it best to use decal scissors and knife blades have a tendency to rip the decal sheet. 


A good idea, is to get a piece of plain paper, A5ish should be fine, and stick the masking tape onto them. If you stuff up the decal, the masking tape is there to make another one.


Exactly the same method is used to do the fins on the diffuser.

Once the tape has been stuck on, draw around the shape with a felt tip pen, then remove the masking tape and cut out the shape.


If you have trouble getting the masking tape to stick down, use tweezers to flatten it down.


Decaling is next... :) 

Place the decals on the decal sheet, so that you are going to get the weave going in the same direction, as shown on another sheet below.


Believe me, if you get the weaves going in different directions, it will look crap... You will see the weave above slants at 45% leaning from left to right. 

Placing the decals is just the same as how ever you normally do your decals, it just takes quite a while. With the diffuser I suggest that you do all the fins first, which will be (on this example) 12 decals, and then the channels, which is 5 decals. 

You can use a hairdryer if you like to speed the process up, but it is important to try not touch the bedded decals too much, not just because they might move or break, but not to get fingerprints on them :) 

Once you have completed all the decals, leave it to all to dry for a day, then spray it with TS 13 Clear. CF decals are usually very shiny, so glossier the better. 

Once the rear has dried, The front lip can finished. 

Much easier than the rear, just three pieces. Use the masking tape again, from the top and bend around the lip to about 1/2 cm under the car 20210222_134054.thumb.jpg.d10d15a95d48b99e7479034d61b5bd90.jpg

Using the same idea with the sheet of paper.


The front Lips / or air dams are more difficult as you have curves on 2 aspects, vertical and horizontal, but use your favorite product and method for getting them on and you shouldn't have a problem. 

I hope this has helped just a little bit.

Please feel free to give me a shout if I can help out in any way... 



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