Track weathering technique request

Discussion in 'N / Z Scale Model Trains' started by beezerv, Jan 17, 2007.

  1. beezerv

    beezerv Member

    I have noticed some layouts with weathered rails and it looks great. I have Atlas code 55 track which is already installed and ballasted. I would like to give the rails a more rusty look. I'm not sure how to make them rusty while keeping the track working well. I searched but couldnt find a simple how to anywhere. If anyone would like to suggest a simple and cheap process I would greatly appreciate it.
  2. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member


    In your case (track already ballasted) you're going to have to use a very fine brush and try to paint the outside of the rails while trying not to paint the ballast. I use an acrylic paint and use it as it comes out of the bottle (not diluted). It's Folkart #944 Nutmeg which I purchase at Michael's. Don't try to spread it too thin or you'll have to go back & give it a second coat. I just paint the side of the rails that would normally be visible, which cuts down the painting quite a bit.

    Good luck...!!!
  3. nachoman

    nachoman Guest

    How big is your layout? Painting by hand takes awhile. Keep the paint away from switch points and pivots. You can wipe paint from the top of the rails while still wet, or you can wipe it off later with a paper towl soaked in acetone.

  4. beezerv

    beezerv Member

    The layout is about 3'x6'. I figured I would have to paint it by hand. I just want to make sure I use the appropriate kind of paint and dont mess up the train's ability to run. Do you paint the entire outside of the rail? I am thinking of just putting a sheet of paper againts the rail to cover the balast and ties making it easier to paint.
  5. steamhead

    steamhead Active Member

    Yes, you should paint the entire side that's visible, keeping paint off the places mentioned above. Using paper to keep the paint off ties & ballast sounds like a good option.
  6. beezerv

    beezerv Member

    Thanks for the advice. The girlfriend will be psyched that we have a reason to go shopping at Michael's too. haha

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