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Painting your rifle traditionally vs using camo patterns

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Old March 14th, 2016, 16:46   #1
TopGunnerz
 
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Painting your rifle traditionally vs using camo patterns

Hi everyone, so with outdoor season coming and the weather warming up it seems like a good time to start considering painting my rifle. However, looking at rifle painting videos and tutorials makes me wonder why patterns used on clothes are not used on rifles, and vice versa.

When looking at paint tutorials for rifles, and what most rifles painted look like (here in Canada at least), usually they are krylon od with krylon dark earth/ khaki accents of local foliage on it, with some tutorials saying that the colours have to blend and transition smoothly.

On the other hand, a lot of bdu camo patterns have the colours clearly separated and are in much more different colours.

Are traditional paint jobs more effective since you technically made it for your areas, or are camo patterns more effective? Why isn't there camo patterns sold in typical gun paintjob style and guns painted in camo patterns? Is it just too difficult/ expensive to paint your gun in a camo pattern? Or is there a difference in philosophy between camouflaging rifle and person?
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Old March 14th, 2016, 17:02   #2
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Gun camo is 70% vanity and 30% practical , any camo that changes the gun from a big black thing to a sorta greenish thing will assist with concealment.

After that it is all style.
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Old March 14th, 2016, 17:13   #3
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What brian says is 100% correct.

Though, I will add, that, contrary to videogames, there is only one acceptable way to paint a FAL.



The majority of painted rifles you see are done to mimick those seen in the hands of special forces or whoever is the "Gun/Operator guy of the month". It serves zero purpose on the gun and usually hinders it's ability to blend with the environment. Like brian said, patterns don't really matter, as much as removing unnatural colours and breaking up the outline of the rifle. You won't find much in terms of black or staight lines/edges and flat surfaces in nature.

That said, I don't know of many conventional outfits in North America that cam their weapons.
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Old March 14th, 2016, 17:41   #4
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A less permanent solution is using gun tape available in 9 different flavours at cabela's

http://www.cabelas.ca/product/19202/...amouflage-wrap
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Old March 14th, 2016, 17:59   #5
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Painted my m14 to loosely resemble MC tropic. Worked out fairly well.
I prefer sponge and stripe to proper camo patterning though. Way easier to do, same camo effect .
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Old March 14th, 2016, 18:08   #6
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I like snakeskin paint.

Super arty and detailed is great but it's gonna get bashed up.

White is great in the snow.

McNett wrap is better than tape. It's reusable, leaves no residue, and it doesn't trap moisture.

Try to leave your sights visible.
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Old March 14th, 2016, 18:35   #7
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So based on everyone's experience, if you could would you have bdus match your gun's paint jobs, or your gun match your bdu patterns, or have them separate? Does anyone feel that 1 style is better in general then the other?
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Old March 14th, 2016, 19:25   #8
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Best to have your gun match your BDU colors. The pattern helps, but it's very hard to replicate properly.
People don't see detailed shapes on your BDU from 25-200ft away, they see colors and shading.

Tigerstripe (the pattern) works very well, as does the multicam pattern. So stripe/snakestripe and sponge blotch patterns match those very well.
Stay away from patterns, like US woodlands, that have large color areas with sharp contrast and drastically clashing colors. US woodland works alright as a camo, BUT in the ranges we're playing at, you actually start to identify the woodland pattern itself (most people that played back in 2008 when woodlands was huge can likely attest to this). But more importantly, when you transition that pattern onto a gun, it becomes significantly more obvious than before.

Doing it wrong. Looks amazing. Crisp and clean, sharp contrast, clear monotone colors. Should be sold as a color option for a remington M700 stock. Draws attention to itself.


Doing it right. Looks like shit, blurred lines, shading and blending of colors, doesn't draw your eye.


As for techniques, snakeskin works well in blotches or stripes. And sponging is a similar pattern on a much smaller scale.

Remember the purpose is to BLEND IN, not to look good. If you end up with a nice clean, crisp, detailed paint job, then you did it wrong. You don't want people noticing the paint job.
You want your gun to (more or less) have a shitty paintjob. Blend colors, blur lines, use matte colors, etc.
Keep in mind how the gun will look in natural vs artificial light as well.


Sponge job on the rifle, artificial light


Same rifle, natural light


Too much snakeskin pattern


Touched up with sponging


example of the patterns not matching; multicam versus digital multicam, doesn't really make any difference.


Going the extra mile; making a paint job that's actually very difficult to photograph up close. Also very effective in tall grass. Made the mistake of painting my silencer the same color, dropped it in 6" grass, lost it forever.


Last edited by ThunderCactus; March 14th, 2016 at 19:53..
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Old March 14th, 2016, 20:21   #9
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I've used 'form' tape on occasion (though finding more CADPAT is nearly impossible). I could swap out the tape easier than re-painting if I had 'painters remorse'.

As was mentioned, breaking up the silhouette. For me it not so much making the gun invisible as to hide what kind of platform I had running. If my opponent doesn't know if I'm running a carbine or LMG, or something else, that's to my advantage.

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Old March 14th, 2016, 21:28   #10
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Old March 14th, 2016, 22:07   #11
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My personal favorite is the canadian army style. Green grip stock and hand guards. Or tan depending on environment. Looks clean. Breaks up the pattern and did I mention canadian?
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Old March 15th, 2016, 13:46   #12
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My personal favorite is the canadian army style. Green grip stock and hand guards. Or tan depending on environment. Looks clean. Breaks up the pattern and did I mention canadian?
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Old March 15th, 2016, 19:55   #13
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@Thundercactus that last post answered a lot of my questions, thanks! So does anyone know why popular paintjobs for guns aren't in bdu form? Is it a patent thing or is there something more then that?
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Old March 15th, 2016, 23:59   #14
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Old March 16th, 2016, 01:11   #15
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Originally Posted by TopGunnerz View Post
@Thundercactus that last post answered a lot of my questions, thanks! So does anyone know why popular paintjobs for guns aren't in bdu form? Is it a patent thing or is there something more then that?
Quite simply; they just don't work as well as a shitty looking paint job.
BDU's only work well once they start to get dirty, and your gun doesn't usually get that dirty. Especially when it has a nice minty paint job.
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