Here is my almost award winning
technique for making muddy tires. I'm no expert by any means and
I say almost award winning because the tires I painted on my
Tamiya Chevy Long Range Desert Group (LRDG) British ww2 desert
truck....whew!!; got a compliment from a judge at the AIR/ARM
contest I attended a few weeks ago. That made me feel good. Then
they proceeded to tear apart my poor little truck. Oh well, I
just have to try harder on seams as that's what killed me
apparently. Any way how to make muddy tires.
I started with the black rubber
tires which came in the kit. They were already black but if not
paint yours black or what ever color you like to use for tires.
Now I was stuck with a weathered truck with showroom new
tires!!! Not good. I proceeded to take some tamiya desert yellow
paint and slop it on. Not too thick, not carefully at all, and
not in any sort of uniformity. Goes against everything your used
to right? After spending all that time making sure no vehicle
color was on your tires and no tire color was on your rims....
now I'm suggesting to slop on desert yellow all over the
place!!! War is hell.
I let the yellow dry and then
came back and dry brushed on my super secret rubber color
mixture of enamel paints (gray and black mixture - patent
pending). I took care not to let any of the tire color get down
into the space between the treads as I wanted this to stay
stained with the muddy yellow. I also left some yellow smeared
around on the side walls. I would like to thank and unknown
hunter at work as I stared at his muddy truck at work in the
parking lot one day during lunch. I envisioned his muddy tires
as I worked on the LRDG Chevy. I find myself staring at the
oddest parts of vehicles these days...never know what you might
see and learn from. Beats the kit instructions... they said to
paint the tires just black. What do they know about dear hunting
in Tokyo anyway?
So that's about it. The good news
is if you don't like it keep working it until you do. You can
always paint them black again and start over. Oh I also did my
typical black wash on the hubs but also tried a second wash of
dark brown which seemed to give it a nice North Africa
distressed look. I'll quote the unknown judge who said
"these wheels are beautiful!!! But look at this
seam!!!!" A roller coaster of emotions that day but a
lesson learned. Also cleaned house at there raffle so felt good
on the drive home. Hope this helps any car, truck, or softskin
builders out there.