Decaling Question

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by TomPM, Dec 29, 2002.

  1. TomPM

    TomPM Another Fried Egg Fan

    I was decaling my LNE boxcar tonight and had something odd happen. The paint on the fried egg logo for LNE ran. The logo is a red circle surrounded by a white circle with Lehigh New England on the white in black letters. It is the black letters that ran. Now depending on how the logo dries, right now about 2 hours after I did it, it looks very wrinkled, I maybe able to save it with some weathering. All the other decals for recording marks, car number, and information are OK. Has anyone else experienced this?

    Almost forgot the decal set is Walthers. I used distilled water to loosen the decal. I used Walthers Solvaset.
  2. Vic

    Vic Active Member

    Hi Tom, I hate to say it but Walther's decals never were the best around. They use/used a low grade decal paper and the carrier coating on it was very thick. Perhaps if you let it sit overnight it might staighten up. It will looked wrinkled for the longest time until completly dry.

    Strange as it may seem though Walthers Solvaset is in my opinion the best setting solution there is.

    I don't know what your experience level is with decaling but when you apply a setting solution to a decal it turns the carrier film (which is actually a lacqure coating) into a semi liquid so the decal will snuggle down over details such as rivets and etc.

    Here's a few tips:

    1. Position the decal using water and a brush. Then blot up all of the excess water with the edge of a tissue...yes toilet paper works great :D

    2. Do not attempt to brush the solvaset on.... I use a glass applicator from an old iodine bottle...ask the druggist for one.

    3. Be sure that your car is laying on a flat surface and apply the solution around the edge of the decal first so that it will flow under the decal.

    4. Very gently apply some more solution to the decal's surface without disturbing it and blot up any excess solution with the edge of a tissue but be very careful not to disturb the decal.

    5. You will notice that the decal starts to wrinkle and deform. DO NOT try to remove these wrinkles...they will go away as the solution dries.

    6. Just walk away from it until it is totally dry. This may take anywhere from and hour to all night depending on the quality of the decal.

    7. When the decal is dry but shows a whiteish fog on it repeat steps 3 - 6 again. If the decal has bubbles in it gently prick them with a needle and then go with steps 3 -6 again.

    8. When the decal has adhered correctly it will appear shiney and is ready to be overcoated with a spray flat finish.

    Bear in mind that decaling is a "learned art" and it takes some practice. Once you get the process down you cant tell the lettering from painted on. Also remember that decals do not adhere well at all to a flat or semi flat finish. If you have painted the piece with that apply a semi gloss spray over it and allow it to dry thourghly before decaling. The gloss will dissappear with the final flat finish to seal the decals.
  3. marty w.

    marty w. Member

    I have had a Walther's Erie Lackawanna logo decal run on me also. Maybe the ink or something was not right. I used the Solvaset to remove it and used another from a different set and that set was ok.

    I apply decals like Vic has said. Great instructions there Vic.
    The only thing that I do different is that I use Microscale "Micro Sol" as the setting solution for the first coat. After that is dry then I will apply the Walther's Solvaset, if needed. The Walther's Solvaset is very strong and will melt some of the thinner decals.

    Hope that helps.
  4. TomPM

    TomPM Another Fried Egg Fan

    Thanks for the replies.

    Well since I pretty much followed Vic's instructions I feel better. It was most likely the decal and not anything stupid I did. I have heard that sometimes Champ decals run. One possible solution that has been offered is to spray the decals with Dullcoat.
  5. TomPM

    TomPM Another Fried Egg Fan

    Well I am happy to report that once the decal dried most of the wrinkles came out. With some weathering I should be able to make it look good.

    Also I decaled the other side of the boxcar last night and everything went well I am happy to report.
  6. chapmon

    chapmon Member

    Decal SOlution


    There is a solution to preserve the decal before you apply it. My friend (custom painter) uses Microscale MI-12 and airbrushes it (or brush if small decal) over the decal. Once dry, this provides an additional stable base for the decal.

    The main idea here is to get the coat even on the decal, so airbrushing is better. If you have a bunch of these decals, arrange to airbrush them all at one time. He also recommends storing decals in a cool, dark place so they won't fade or curl.

    Hope this helps everyone.

    Have a happy and safe holiday.

  7. TomPM

    TomPM Another Fried Egg Fan

    I just want to take the time to thank everyone who provided suggestions on my recent problem with decals.

    I finished decaling the LNE boxcar last night and with the exception of the ink that ran on the logo it came out great. Since I followed some of the suggestions I think I avoided a repeat of the problem on the other side of the car.

    After I have assembled and weathered the car I will post a photo so that anyone who is interested can view the finished product.

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