The Art of War: Da Dip


Hello again and welcome to this week's installment of The Art of War! This week we're going to touch on the pros and cons as well as my personal technique behind dipping. What is dipping you ask? It's basically a very quick way of shading the colors on your models using substances like wood finish or Army Painter's Quikshade to get a thick, ink-like coat over your models. It's referred to as "dipping" because you literally dip the models into what you want to use to shade them with. The type of "dip" you use is entirely up to you. I've found that the Army Painter Quikshade to be a bit better for minis than a can of wood finish. That said, I've seen a lot of decent-looking models done with a can of Minwax at half the cost. It all comes down to preference.

Dipping is somewhat controversial as a technique as, while you can get an army painted very quickly, the models definitely look "dipped". Anyone who knows about the technique will be able to tell if a model was shaded normally or if it was dipped. That being said, you really shouldn't do this if you're looking to get a high painting score or want a "showcase" quality army. However, if what you want is a fully painted army without having to spend a ton of time blacklining, highlighting, shading and inking there's no faster way of doing it as long as you do it right.

To prep, the first things you should do is get yourself a couple bags of GW flying bases (the round, clear plastic ones), a few 2x4s and a drill. You'll want to drill a series of well-spaced small holes into the wood to hold the peg for the flight bases snugly. Next, put all of your flight bases together with the flat part away from the peg  as this is where the model will be placed for dipping. Finally you want to find yourself a nice, open space and some pants you don't mind ruining as you're going to be spinning the models post-dip to get a lot of the excess off so that too much of your "dip" doesn't settle into spaces on your models where you don't want it.

Now that we're ready to start dipping, you should take your first squad and finish basecoating all of the relevant areas of the model. Finish the base of any color on the model you want but don't worry about blacklining, highlighting or shading as that's what this technique is for! Now, once the paint on the models is dry, glue them to the flat part of the flying bases. Give plenty of time for the glue to dry as you really don't want to have to fish a model out of the dip or worse, have one drop onto the ground and get ruined. When the glue is dry, we can begin the dip!

Take the flying base by the peg and just dip your model into your shader. Once should do the trick. Now, spin the peg in your fingers to get rid of the excess dip. Once you're pleased the with the result, put the peg in the hole you drilled into the 2x4 and repeat until finished! It's a pretty simple technique, to be honest, but it does take time to set up to do it properly. It's also very easy to mess up without proper technique and materials. So just make sure you're prepped as I mentioned earlier on and you should be fine!


Until next week, keep those brushes clean!


Pics this week are credited to Pertinax of the Warseer forums since my camera is on the fritz. Luckily, he does the same thing as me. Yay!