Horrible trend starting

Discussion in 'Getting Started' started by hoppercarmaker, Apr 20, 2008.

  1. I am starting to see (weatherd) cars and buildings on Ebay. The sellers are just spray painting spots and putting what looks like dirty water on them and calling it weatherd. All their doing is ruining things that actual model railroaders might want. There is a (train shed) on right now that looks like they just sprayed black spots on it and are calling it weatherd.I hope this trend dies soon. That's the end of my rant for the day.
  2. RonP

    RonP Member of the WMRC

    It will at least get those buggers that fall for it the chance to fix and learn how to weather correctly
  3. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    If they don't demand the price the seller wants, you won't see them for long. If they do demand the price, the seller is brilliant for taking a common model, doing a half-a$$ed weathering job, and bringing in the buck$.

    But I agree - I see stuff on ebay listed as "CUSTOM WEATHERING JOB!!! NIIICE!!!" when in reality it is an athearn blue box freight car, not put together properly, and a beginners weathering job.

  4. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    I know! There's two types of weatherers:

    -The Crappy "rattle-can" "india-ink wash" "globby painter" or "unpainted plastic" and the worst: one who doesn't work from photographs. *coughRailisticcough*

    There seems to be no middle

    The good: They work from photographs, and stive for realism, and are always trying something new, different, and fascinating. Like Coovi's Car Works, Arrgo Model Works, 0atman, Mellow mike, Jesi Lopez, HO machinery Master, okie loco, and a few others. Hopefully, you can include my work "the weathering man" among the good, but I'll leave that judgement up to someone else. I do work from photographs too.

    The good stuff usually carrys the listing:

    "CUSTOM WEATHERED HO" or just "Custom Weathered" those are usually the pros.
  5. Mountain Man

    Mountain Man Active Member

    Neither side has any appeal to me; it's my layout and the stuff on it reflects my work and my standards. If I wanted a perfect layout I could purchase one, from the track plans to the construction to the rolling stock, locomotives, paint jobs and all...but it wouldn't be mine.

    And if I pay someone else to it, what have I learned?
  6. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    Mountian Man, you're full of great points lately! ;)

    That's why I do all my own work, on top of other people's work on comission of course. ;) I enjoy the pride and the sense of accomplishment.
  7. ezdays

    ezdays Out AZ way

    I have to agree with Mountain Man. Most people are in this hobby to create, not to collect. And those that are collectors are after the unique, rare and very expensive things.

    For those that say, "I can't do it, I've tried", my response is: keep trying, you'll improve, but buying something that you can do yourself doesn't help you. especially when you buy mediocre things.
  8. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    First and foremost beauty is in the eye of the beholder and recalling what may not please you just might please me or modeler Happy Joe.
    No..Weathering is like art..What I feel is overstating rust buckets you may call it a masterpiece.
    And that's the way of it.
  9. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Actually I found a close study of passing trains is a far better measuring tool then a picture.

    By doing that I find cars weathered like this car is by far more believable then modeling a rust bucket or a car side full of graffiti.

  10. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    Brakie...good comments. Who am I to say which one is "better". People may nit-pick the work I do, and the work of others certainly may not be to my taste. What is at issue here is that people are on ebay trying to sell their work. If it sells, obviously someone likes it. If it doesn't the seller may just give up. I doubt we are to see the hobby collapse because too many people are snatching up models, throwing on quickie weathering jobs, and flooding the ebay market. Now if people were doing the same thing in, say, the housing market, with everyone and thier brother buying up fixer-uppers, doing a low-quality flip to try and turn a profit...WAIT....hmm :D:D:D:D:D:D:D:D

    Another hobby of mine is painitng. Some may like what I paint, others may not. Some may say the sky is the wrong color, others beg me to paint something for them. Like weatering of models - it is subjective.

    But you know what - weatherers are NUTS :D Go over to the weathering forum, and you will see folks in an ego tinkling contest between two modelers whose skills *far* surpass what I would *ever* be able to do. "Oh the blue on your grafitti is too dark, and the rust on your trucks shouldn't cover the whatchamagigger because everyone knows those get oiled every other week..."

  11. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member


    There's a middle road between your Airbrush overspray and a rust bucket with graffiti. I cannot say I've seen a full-size freigh car that look like it was quickly sprayed with Floquil Grimy Black.

    Cars RUST, they have graffiti (only after 1993 or so) they aren't just dusty.

    Here's some pretty normal looking modern (real) freight cars
    RailcarPhotos.com - Photo Details - NDYX - 523164
    RailcarPhotos.com - Photo Details - NDYX - 523164
    RailcarPhotos.com - Photo Details - UTLX - 666529

    There are shiny new cars, but look at the wheels and trucks, rust is visible there.
    RailcarPhotos.com - Photo Details - SP - 228836

    This is very common rust on some types of tank cars:
    RailcarPhotos.com - Photo Details - GATX - 26572

    Look at the weathered wood here:
    RailcarPhotos.com - Photo Details - SOU - 116188

    Airbrushing oversprays or india ink washes don't cut it for REALISM.
    These are normal cars that could be part of any train, nothing rustbucket, or outstanding about any of them, but even in the normal cars, look at all the complex weathering necessary to make it realistic!
  12. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    For a contest-quality model whose eventual destination is a display case or a small diorama, I couldn't agree more. But for an overall layout, realism is much more complicated.

    Have you ever seen a wonderfully detailed layout but somethin just doesn't seem convincing? You can't put your finger on it, but you *know* somehow that it is just a model. All the details are in place and the scenes are carefully thought out, but still something seems wrong.

    Our eyes don't see things the way they actually are. Intro drawing classes usually demonstrate this in the very first lesson. Think about situations in your everyday life and realize just how few details you actually notice. Unless it is out of the ordinary, your brain doesn't want to waste the time investigating it.

    A freight train is a good example. I can look at an individual boxcar and notice all kinds of dents, grafitti, rusted panels and faded paint. But if that car is 1 of a hundred in a freight train as I drive past - I probably won't even notice.

    For a model railroad - what makes things most convincing layout is the overall effect. Things have to blend together, and nothing should stand out too greatly. Remember, we are looking at our models at a much closer distance than thier real-life counterparts. If every car on a layout was weathered and detailed to match prototype photos, the overall effect would look too "busy", IMO. Sometimes all that is really needed is to dull the finish a bit and fade the paint. The individual cars won't stand up to scrutiny, but the overall layout effect will be good.

  13. Biased turkey

    Biased turkey Active Member

    You could post a link so we can rant with you . :)

  14. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    Miles, when you are talking about using photographs...you are not talking about using photographs as your guide (brakie's point), you are talking about taking pictures of your work...to assess it...just like John Allen did, right?

    I'm definitely more of an amateur weatherer. I do prototypical things, mostly with chalk, but I doubt people would really pay for my work. I prefer lightly weathered equipment...a little dusty, rusty, and showing signs of the steam era (soot). I really hate painting my models...but I definitely consider it worthwhile afterwards (and not worth paying someone else). Yesterday I started my first 1880's locomotive paint scheme; it will have 5 different colors...tuscan red, black, white, buff, and russian iron (technically american iron...since russian iron was replaced by american iron in the 1870s). I will very lightly weather it as the paint scheme is both difficult and gorgeous.

    I'm definitely a model railroader, not a collector. It seems that very expensive models are more for those with plenty of disposable income and a somewhat limited amount of time to built their empire. For a new retiree, it makes sense that you would purchase RTR equipment and buildings so that you can focus on the layout construction...since you don't have decades to build up a unique roster like the many young modelers here on the forum are doing (myself, Miles, Nachoman, etc....).
  15. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

    NKP, I do both.

    -I use the photographs of REAL cars to get inspiration, or in some painstaking examples, copy it exactly as I see it/

    -I Take photos of my own work to look at it in a whole different way, to catch mistakes, and to have it critiqued by others on how I could improve it.

    -Finally, after things have been all revised, I take an "offical portrait" of my work to keep for posterity.

    If you're referring to the first post, many of the skilled people who weather their models go out into the field and take photos of an object similar or identical to their model, and using those photographs, create a miniature model that looks just like the real life object. If they cannot find a real-life object that looks like their model, it's an obvious next-step to look in books, magazines, or online for that illusive, or rare object.
    (ex. You obviously cannot find a actual, weathered NYC J-class Hudson, because they were ALL scrapped in the 1950's but there's a good amount of color film and photographs to create a plausible model of one, although it's impossible to see it for yourself today in 2008.)

    Some people take shortcuts and ignore this step, and get weathering that seems like "something's a bit off" like having rust in strange places, or putting graffiti in places on a car that a tagger normally wouln't or couldn't reach easily. Most people who do this are prone to exxagerating their weathering or make it too even, or bringing this topic full-circle to Hoppercarmaker's original comment:

  16. MilesWestern

    MilesWestern Active Member

  17. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

    Miles, the "weathering from photographs" is very similar to what I do. I intensely study pictures of the cars in question...in the era...and supplement this knowledge with what other people in the era do. I've practically memorized all 3 volumes of "Color Photography of the Nickel Plate Road". I can also tell you that the NKP only washed the sides of their cars in the later years...as their car washers didn't have hit the roofs. Unfortunately for my South Park modeling, little can be learned from the photographs...as most photographs are not very crisp...and they aren't even true b&W...so much has to be guesstimated based off of wooden cars 60+yrs after my era...and off of the railroad's practices at that time.
    It's bad enough, that we don't really know whether the South Park Reefers were painted white, yellow, or maybe even mint green...with black, blue, or red lettering. We also can't tell if the cabooses were white or yellow...and if the 28 Cooke locomotives that served as the mainstay of the power were blue, black, or something else. And while we know that the passenger cars were chocolate brown...no one really knows what chocolate brown looked liked despite having 5 surviving 1870s/80s passenger cars.
  18. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    A while back in a British mag, I read that locos with near professional quality weathering jobs just failed to sell at auction, while the same loco repainted in paint shop condition went a a very acceptable price.
    I have one rtr loco in mildly weathered condition (factory job); it was the only version available in the paint scheme I wanted that year. I don't mind that, but I don't do much weathering of my own.
  19. My origanal rant went off ebay already, it's probly in the trash by now.
  20. brakie

    brakie Active Member

    Miles,Let's not forget that 3 pictures doesn't represent prototypical weathering and could be misleading.
    I spend 200-300 h hours a year trackside observing the prototype..
    From this observation here is my take.Recall this is a summery of the "weathered" cars I see in the average train consist.
    These are what I call "dullcote" weathering.

    RailARC Photo Archive

    RailARC Photo Archive

    RailARC Photo Archive
    The next batch shows what I call "wash" weathering.

    RailARC Photo Archive

    RailARC Photo Archive

    Now we come to the "heavies" as I calls 'em.

    RailARC Photo Archive

    RailARC Photo Archive

    RailARC Photo Archive

    Now we come to the true "rust buckets".
    RailARC Photo Archive

    RailARC Photo Archive

    As we can see freight car weathering isn't cut and dry and a study of the prototype is called for..
    A closer look will reveal many things to include road names we thought was long gone.
    A closer look will also review the majority of the open hopper fleet is free from graffiti which I believe these cars are either on the move or in areas that can not be easily access.

    For those may like to expand on these thoughts can do so by using this link:

    RailARC Photo Archive

    I feel this is the top freight car site that gives a truer look into the wonderful world of weathering for those that would like to trod down that path.

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