$50 HO Box Car?

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by Rusty Spike, Dec 19, 2003.

  1. Rusty Spike

    Rusty Spike Member

    Hats off to Rich!

    Thanks for commenting! As has been said, your work is very noteworthy and inspiring (as mentioned earlier, I keep copies of these cars for ideas and for a goal to shoot for).

    No airbrush? Cool. Mine clogged shortly after I got it and I haven't had any luck fixing it. We've been "dry brushing" as best we can and its good to know the effect I want is possible without an airbrush.

    Congratulations and good luck with the business plan. I'm knee deep in my first attempt at a business and can appreciate the effort it takes to get started.

    Looking back over the posts, I wanted to clarify a comment I made about getting my kids to help - I did not want to imply that your level of quality was achievable by children. My hobbying always includes my kids and I employ them to scratch, sand, blot and comment on all our weathering projects.

    Keep up the great work, good luck with the business and nice job on the website and your commitment to recognizing others doing great work in the same area.
  2. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member

    Thanks RUSTY SPIKE

    Once again, Thank You.

    I'm glad you liked the Website.

    I may do some AIRBRUSH someday, but I want to master these
    other techniques first.

    I am actually creating a system for doing each step.

    It seems to be all trial and error.

    I also have someone that inspired me, and that was


    Look for his stuff also.

    I have included him on my site as he was my inspiration for me from the beginning.

    I will keep in touch.

    Drop me a line anytime.

  3. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    I have to echo others who have complemented you on some of the best weathering if not the best I have ever seen. I think the prices you are getting for the cars on ebay is outrageous, but it certainly is not your fault. If people want to pay that much for your work, go for it. I don't think any of the comments in this thread were in any way uncomplementary to you. I have bookmarked your web page, and when I'm more awake, I will really study it. Again great work!!!
  4. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member

    Thanks Russ for the kind words.

    Things have been going so well that some
    weathering manufacturers have contacted me.

    I will try their product no charge and who knows?,
    Maybe the car I use it on could be in their advertisment.

    I am happy.

    Thanks again.
  5. Gary Pfeil

    Gary Pfeil Active Member

    Hi Rich, I'm glad you found your way to the Gauge, your work is very nice!
  6. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member

    Great Forum!

    Thanks Gary

    It's nice to have a place to go and talk with model railroaders.

    I will be around.

  7. Mellow-Mike

    Mellow-Mike Member

    Thanks Blake,

    But as Rich himself has pointed out - the cars in question were his and not mine.

    Speaking for my own work, I will agree that the prices I get typically reach inordinate amounts. Were I to simply do commission work for someone - I wouldn't stand a chance of getting 3-digit sums! Even I will admit that. I do put a lot more time and effort into a car than those of you using airbrushes - and a certain faction of HO hobbyists appreciate that.

    There are thousands of model railroaders out there, and you can sort of divide them into groups. Those who are in it for the hobby aspect, and get satisfaction out of their own accomplishments, even if their work is not magazine quality. Then there's the next level of modeler/collectors. They do their own weathering, but if they see something better than they can do, and it's got a modest price (i.e. opening day on eBay) they'll bite on it. As mentioned in this thread... $24 or so is not a bad price for a weathered car.

    Then at the top of the food chain are the pure collectors. The fellows who shell out to have their brass locos custom painted, etc. Or their layouts built for them. The ones who leave the swap meets with two grocery bags full. Those bidders who seem to have bottomless pockets. It's these predatory elite eBay bidders who give true meaning to the term auction! Once they set their sights on an "original" piece of art - they push the prices into the stratosphere.

    I use the term art because that is what we're selling. The weathering style... the authentic graffiti... the rust...the bent ladder rungs... or whatever. And like a true artist, I don't repeat a car scheme, so some folks see the finished product as a limited edition piece. If someone can pay big bucks for a seascape oil painting to hang over their leather sofa... why not a piece of art to go on their layout?

    If I had a six-figure income... you can bet I would be buying other people's quality work... whether or not I was a good painter myself. That lifestyle's not going to happen - so the best I can do is cater to those who have it. I supply a piece of art - and while I don't sign them all - it's uplifting to see two or three bidders fight over being the one to have it in their exclusive collection. As Rich pointed out though, I do feel some remorse that many admirers can't afford the prices. I'm not trying to break the C-Note barrier with each car... and I don't do reserves for that reason. I have had some cars slip under the radar for blue-collar prices, but I am not spouting deleted expletives over it. What's ironic, is that those are the cars I do without graffiti. As much flak as I get for exploiting vandalism for profit - it's those graffiti cars that are my bread and butter.

    But lets not disrespect the collectors who shell out big bucks for our work on eBay. You can't seriously believe they are "suckers". Our weathered cars are not sold sight unseen, and most of us show large detailed pics (mine are in a web folder which is listed in my auctions). I paint each of my cars as though I were keeping them. Something most folks can see in the final result. Rich also puts great care into what he does. As opposed to assembly line work that appears frequently on eBay. It is this attention to detail that garners the accolades and handsome prices.


  8. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member


    Just a few shots of the new car I am working on.

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  9. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member



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    rdivizio Member



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    rdivizio Member



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  12. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Nice looking car you have there Mike..:D :thumb:
  13. Mellow-Mike

    Mellow-Mike Member


    rdivizio is Rich - not me!

    (Or are you saying this just to antagonize me) [:)]
  14. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    oops!:oops: I meant Rich..Sorry Mike for the slip..:oops: To early in the morning after working all night.Perhaps I should be :sleeping: instead of checking the forums and trying to type..
  15. Blake

    Blake Member

    Well, I must say, Mike and Rich, you both do fantastic work and are very inspiring. Don't stop selling on Ebay. If you are getting these higher prices then go for it. If you are posting them starting at $20 each and they hit $180, then that is the market value of your work. Take it while you can. The market may not stay that high forever and sometimes, other painters who can do that kind of work (not many I'm sure) could see those prices and start posting their work as well.
  16. Jim T

    Jim T Member

    That's beautiful work Rich and a nice website. Lot's of good inspiration there. I also say, if you can get those prices on e-bay, go for it. As far as value goes I say they're worth whatever anyone is willing to pay. I think we call that the free enterprise system.

    Cheers, Jim

    PS: By the way if you ever want to give some instruction here on the Gauge as to just how you do that I'm sure it would be very appreciated. I know I would.
  17. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member

  18. geep15

    geep15 New Member

    Rich and Mike,
    I was one of the folks commenting on the prices of the cars as well. Not for ONE MINUTE would I criticize the work- it's very nicely done, and I've gotten ideas on how to weather my own freight cars. (For the record, I use the drybrush method and powdered weathering chalk, both covered over with a bit of Dullcote.). I also have been replacing the plastic wheels with metal ones (I prefer Reboxx, as that's what I'm able to get, but I may use IM if I can find them mearby), and installing Kadee number 58s.

    Perhaps it's me, but when I can buy a freight car, add the details, paint it (if I want a new paint job) and weather it, why should I pay someone to do the job for me? But again, that's just me- I work on a tight budget, and I find painting & weathering rolling stock myself to be a cheap method of obtaining realism. I may not ever be a customer of yours, but your work does provide hints and inspiration.

    In the era I model, any graffiti present was mostly done with chalk, and very little was really seen.

    I'm sure that if I added up the costs for the car, parts and labor, each car I do could fetch more than what I first paid for it. But I do the work for my own enjoyment.

    I've checked out more of your freight cars- they're all very nicely done, and works of art in themselves. If I can do a car half as nice as the ones you guys do, I'll be a happy camper.
  19. rdivizio

    rdivizio Member

    Thanks Geep,

    Your opinion's are respected and I'm glad that there is
    inspiration in the air.
    We all need it, artist or not.

    I love the pure excitement model railroading gives me in the first place and to be able to make minitures look realistic in detail
    has always been sort of a love for me.

    I was a STAR WARS kid. 9 years old in 1977.
    What a great age to be and see the wonderful behind the scenes
    models that they use in the films.

    I used to make my own stop motion animaton movies with those
    toys. I would build out of clay and tree logs little Hobbit cities after reading The Hobbit.

    So, I understand your passion in doing it yourself.

    At this point, I'm beginning to look at my cars when I'm done
    and say, Hmmm, Should I keep this one.

    I'm no where near layout stage yet so I will keep doing this
    and building my rolling stock collection.

    Thank again. Rich
  20. Mellow-Mike

    Mellow-Mike Member

    I think Rich will agree with me - that if a certain three Buyers suddenly gave up model railroading as a resolution... we would pretty much have $30 or $40 cars! Tops.

    There are fellows who blow me away - but fortunately they choose to not sell their creations on eBay. Gives Rich and I free reign to reap the benefits. Model Railroading is supposed to be a hands-on hobby for the most part. But certain individuals place a value on buying "head turners" for their layout, I guess. I kind of doubt they are assimilating them to study weathering techniques!

    I'm glad my work motivates people in a different way. I didn't learn from other railroaders - but I learned from modelers of different subjects. So I don't look at other's trains for ideas. I just have the acquired skill to interpret prototype weathering onto a model. I look at buildings in real life and see things other's could care less about. Soot patterns. Rust on pipes. Debris strewn around. Same with trains. Sort of railfanning - but not to seek a train as a whole - but rather the collective cars and their uniqueness.

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