Help Me Weather My Roads

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by HoosierDaddy, Dec 4, 2007.

  1. HoosierDaddy

    HoosierDaddy Member

    I'm working on laying down roads for my HO scale layout that is set in the Late 1940's era and I'm looking for some ideas on weathering the streets to look right. This will be in a small downtown area and the streets will be concrete. I have made the streets from posterboard, and painted them an aged concrete color (Folk Art Linen with a touch of Hippo Grey). They have not been installed on the layout yet, because I wanted to do the bulk of the weathering at my work area, instead of bent over the layout. I tried a small test section where I scribed in expansion joints and various cracks in the pavement that I liked the looks of. I then tried to do an inda ink in alcohol wash on this and it ended up muddling the concrete color and wash color together in a big mess. I think I need to work on my wash technique. Any suggestions are very welcome.

    The next test was with black chalk powder. This looks better, but I think Its a little too dark, and I'm not entirely sure if the darkest area should be in the tire path, or between the tires. I've seen photos, that show either way, so I guess I'm covered, no matter which way I choose. Any suggestions for techniques using chalk to get the right effects?

    I plan on adding some darker, oily spots at intersections, to simulate oil drips accumulating while waiting their turn at the stop signs. Would manhole covers have been prevelant in the late 40's, and if so, how freqent, one a block, two, three...? Would these have been in the street, or would they have been in the sidewalk if possible?

    As you can see, I have quite a few questions, so feel free to let loose with the information if you wish.

    As alway, thank you in advance for your help.

  2. w8jy

    w8jy Member

    I am afraid I can't be of much help, because I have many of the same questions - you beat me to this posting by a week or so. I am not satisfied with my roads, so I will be following this thread to learn something myself.
    There are plenty of experts here, so I am sure that some good information will be popping up here soon! Thanks for asking the questions.
  3. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    I don't know how much experience you have with I'll start with the basics to help you determine some techniques...

    #1 chalk doesn't like gloss surfaces
    #2 chalk sticks nicely to damp surfaces
    #3 marking with the chalk directly onto the surface can give an intense make
    #4 powdering the chalk with a knife and then applying it with a paint brush works well
    #5 sealing chalk in with dullcoat usually softens the weathering job.

    I'm 90% certain that there have been no new manholes added to my neighborhood in 60+ years... I can tell from the manhole covers...and from the fact that the sewers are far older than that. Wastewater is on of the last priorities to get taken care of by the mayor...usually consent decrees and other formers of legal action are required to get municipalities to open the purse manholes are usually not replaced...and there is no need to add additional ones.
  4. HoosierDaddy

    HoosierDaddy Member

    I'm using powdered chalk scraped from a pastel chalk stick and applying it with a brush. I used a fairly big, stiff bristle brush, which I think was a little heavy-handed. It is the brush I use to get chalk into all the nooks and cranies of an outside braced boxcar. wrong tool for the job likely. I'll try it with a smaller paintbrush to get better control. I should have known that dullcoat will soften the weathering job, but I never got to that stage since I didn't like the overall look. I'll remember that when I get the weathering pattern I like, if not the intensity.

    So, how many manholes per city block?

    Thanks for answering

  5. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    Typically, they varied based on the needs. If memory serves correctly (from having performed sewer modeling before)...there is a junction (with a manhole access) whenever the sewer line has anything tied into it. So two streets with sewers come together...a manhole has to be around. You have a business with toilets? There should be a manhole nearby. Most manholes will simply be for several homes/businesses to tie into the sewer line. As far as a standard spacing when nothing is being tied would probably be based off of the zoning and other things for future growth...some sort of local preference.

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