Uschi van der Rosten | Mask Sets - Wheels & Hatches - Large and Small

Reviewed by Kevin Futter

Uschi van der Rosten has produced a pair of generic mask sets for wheels and hatches, classified as "Small" (Item 2014) and "Large" (Item 2015). The material used is a translucent, self-adhesive vinyl.

A Closer Look

The masks are arrayed across the sheet in rows of pre-cut squares, and each square contains a pair of concentric pre-cut circles. This very effectively maximises not only the number of masks each sheet contains, but also the overall value-for-money represented by each set. The nested circles are not particularly close in size, which means there's plenty of material surrounding each one.

Note that I've adjusted the colours and contrast in the photo above in an attempt to bring out the mask outlines more clearly.

The arrangement of the masks means that you can employ them in either a positive (masking over) or negative (masking around) approach, which further extends their utility.

Small (Item 2014)

The Small set features a series of circle masks, increasing in size from 2mm to 15.5mm, in 0.5mm increments.

Large (Item 2015)

The Large set features a series of circle masks, increasing in size from 6mm to 20mm, in 0.5mm increments.

On Test

I decided to perform a quick test using the tail wheel from Kittyhawk's Texan kit. This is a very small part, with a hub diameter of around 2.5-3mm. It also features a combination of raised and recessed details, so I figured it represents one of the more challenging situations in which a circle mask could be used.

I started by giving the tail wheel on overall coat of Tamiya XF-85 Rubber Black:

This is a very good 'scale black'. Next I removed a 3mm negative mask and applied it to the tail wheel:

The masks are initially tricky to remove, so some care and a sharp blade are in order. I also found the mask quite tricky to place on the part, but this is no fault of the masks themselves. The masking material does have sufficient translucency however to allow you to see surrounding detail on the model.

The next step is the crucial one - a dry mix of Tamiya AS-12 on to the hub:

You can see from the photo already that my initial alignment was not perfect. I was able to re-adjust the mask a little more precisely and gave the hub another light coat:

The hub now exhibits a fringe of over-spray in one section from my earlier misplacement. This is obviously no fault of the mask itself! I'll discuss how I dealt with this shortly. But first, I wanted to test the re-usability of the masks, so I set about applying the same mask to the other side of the tail wheel and repeated the process:

And the result:

Again, some evidence of imprecise placement, and this highlights the challenges of using such a small mask on such an awkward part, but this was partly the point of the test. Reusing the mask presented no special challenge however, and it adhered to the part as expected. Exactly how many reuses you could get out of single mask is impossible to say, but they are definitely not single-use only.

To deal with the fringe of over-spray on each side, I mixed up a wash of Ivory Black oil paint and white spirits and ran it around each hub a couple of times, drying with a hairdryer between applications. This tidied things up nicely:

And here's the completed tail wheel attached to its strut:

Bear in mind that this photo shows it at at least twice actual size. A very good result I think!


This is an extremely handy pair of mask sets, usable in multiple scales, genres and applications. My test was one of the more difficult tasks for this type of mask to cope with, and most usages will be more straightforward. A set of theses masks should certainly obviate the need to ever buy a set of commercial wheel masks, for example.

The sheer utility of these sets makes recommending them a no-brainer!

Thanks to Uschi van der Rosten for the review samples.

© Kevin Futter 2014

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This review was published on Friday, May 23 2014; Last modified on Friday, May 23 2014