Friday, 14 March 2014

Vallejo IJA (Imperial Japanese Army) Model Air Paint Set

Hi all

Today I'm taking a quick look at Vallejo's model air paint set for the Imperial Japanese Army.

In the UK this set of 8 paints costs £14.50, if you were to buy these separately you'd be looking at 8 x £1.89 = £15.12.  That's a saving of a whole 62p, that's enough to get my juices flowing.  That's okay though because you get a guide with it...right. Well no you don't really.  You are told that 3 of the 8 paints you've just bought are applicable for 1942 onward, whilst the other 5 are for the typical early war scheme with the yellow cross.
The Guide
What's in the box?
On the left we have the 3 late war colours (mid war in FOW terms) and on the right the 5 colours for early war.

As you can see 2 of those are surface primers and look to me as if they need a really really good shake.

As a Flames of War player, I'm really only going to need the 5 early war colours, so 3 of them are superfluous to my needs at present... no doubt I'll find a use for them elsewhere.  Also the yellow...well I have yellow from painting other things, I wouldn't really say I need another bottle.

From my perspective I've paid double what I really needed to, however when Fezman says "You need anything from snmstuff" it's a lot easier to say "Grab that Vallejo Japanese boxset" rather than specifying 4/5 paints they may or may not have in stock.

Overall I'm a little bit disappointed...I've not saved any money by buying a set and I've ended up with paints I don't need.

Left = Earth Green; Right = Parched Grass
Earth Green is reminiscent of Green Brown and Parched Grass looks like a dark desert yellow.  Being surface primers, these went on nicely although my bottle of parched grass has separated despite vigorous shaking.  I'm already thinking that, I'll basecoat Earth Green and use the Parched Grass as a highlight colour.
Left = Earth Brown Stripe; Right = Field Green Stripe
Up close photo under a photography light and then mid tone adjusted the brown stripe looks okay.  I've subsequently worked out that the earth brown colour is meant to replace the Earth Green colour, if you feel like it.  When actually painting, it's really hard to see the contrast so use good lighting.  Loving the green, although that one stripe caused my airbrush to bung up...that's a 0.4mm nozzle and needle at 1.5 bar.  In my experience this is typical of Model Air.
Left = Blue Green & Cam Pale Brown; Right = Black Brown

and also yellow
This is just annoying now...I much prefer the colours of the "late" camouflage set.  As I figured it would the yellow will be a nightmare to apply.  I've rushed it here, when I come to do it properly, I'll be using a paint brush.

My conclusion...don't buy this set, buy the individual pots you need and gets an assault rating of "Bounced by defensive fire" (which is the second lowest rating on a scale I just made up).  

I hope someone finds the colour comparisons useful.

Thanks for reading

Winner Dave


  1. Considering that I am just starting to paint up my IJA for Bolt Action, this is very good information to have. Was sorting out my colors to find something reasonable with the colors I have, and glad that I have now. Thanks for this, and nice work on those pieces all the same!

  2. Awww, sorry you didn't like them Dave! Next time we can buy what you want of the site, and just mark it as 'For Fez delivery', and I'll grab it from Sean.

    Chin up, can't win 'em all!