Weathering question

Discussion in 'FAQs' started by medavis, Nov 22, 2005.

  1. medavis

    medavis New Member

    I am new to this forum. Are there anyhow guides for weathering your engines and rooling stock?
  2. 60103

    60103 Pooh Bah

    Check the Photography forum. Look for posts by TomPM, who has some lovely instructions. Also anything titled "weathering".
  3. GeorgeHO

    GeorgeHO Member

    Model Railroader Magazine had a special issue magazine released in August called "Modeling Railroads of the 1950s". It had a section devoted to weathering diesels and steam locomotives, including what color to make the mud that splatters on the trucks.

    How much you weather is entirely up to you, for me I weather just enough to bring out highlights for the detailing. I put the same color, light muddy brown on my trucks (which happens to be the "approved" color), but if I put it on silver trucks, it goes on from bottom up to provide shadow, but on dark trucks it goes on the upper portion to provide highlights. Whatever you do, make sure YOU like it, because you will be the one that sees it every day.
  4. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    :wave: welcome to the gauge :wave: there are many different approches to weathering some depending on time (what era ) location (desert, midwest) main
    commodity( coal,iron ore) .
  5. railwaybob

    railwaybob Member

    This is a method that was shown to me about 30 years ago by an avid modeller. It's the "wash" method and requires no special tools or paints.

    Take one can of Tremclad Flat Black rust paint. Remember - Tremclad Flat Black. Actually, take the lid off the tin of Tremclad Flat Black rust paint 'cause you only need a bit.

    Pour a bit of paint thinner, turpentine, or varsol into a shot glass or a small jar.

    Take a small artist's paint brush. Dip the brush into the paint thinner, then touch the brush a bit into the Flat Black paint. Brush it onto the car you want to weather. You will end up with a wash of flat black paint and paint thinner. Cover the whole car with the wash. Move the wash around until you're satisfied with the look. Let it dry.

    Repeat the process as often as necessary until you are satisfied that it has that sooty weathered look that you want. If there's a bright sheen still left on the car, spray on a coat of Testor's Dullcote. I use the kind that you get in the spray can.

    It's very easy to do and almost idiot-proof.

    Bob M.
  6. medavis

    medavis New Member

    Thanks for all the info. I will try it after I finish moving and get unpacked. Just want the cars and engines to look more realistic than right out of the box. I mainly have deisels, but have one steam, SP4449 with cars.
  7. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Don't weather Sp4449 or it's cars. That engine is in a park in Portland , Oregon when not being used for railfan trips. I think it is probably kept in spotless condition.
  8. medavis

    medavis New Member

    I'm not going to weather the SP4449. They do keep the one here in Portland clean. I've been able to go on a couple rail fan rides.
  9. jim currie

    jim currie Active Member

    just to kill the new out of the box look i save all the thinner i use to clean brushes and use it to spray on cars it gives a slight dulling affect and has very little color to it mostly a grayish black.
  10. railwaybob

    railwaybob Member

    Hello Jim Currie. Yes, another good weathering technique. If you don't have an airbrush, you can simply "paint" the paint thinnner on to the cars as a wash.
  11. Russ Bellinis

    Russ Bellinis Active Member

    Mike, The weathering technics that have been given will knock the new shine off of rolling stock. If you want to weather rolling stock even more realistically, you need to look at color photos of the prototype to see how things weather. I was in a rail seminar at work a couple of years ago that emphasised various aspects of working on intermodal trailers and refrigerated railcars. One part of the seminar was safety and blue flag laws. The instructor for that part of the course was the supervisor of the car shops for the BNSF in Yakima, Wash. Someone asked a question about cleaning freight cars. His response was, "Freight cars are to make money. We don't wash them on the outside, or paint them except as required for maintainance. We don't care how they look as long as they do the job safely." The railroads do clean the inside of cars between loads if needed, but not the outside. The only cleaning the cars will get is when they go through a rainstorm. Also think about the use of the cars. Boxcars carry all sorts of comodities. They will tend to rust around rivets and doors. Plug doors on a boxcar or reefer weigh 1500lbs each. The tracks will be kept greased to let them open and close easily. That means that you would want to paint a little black on the inside edges of the door guides. Still, some may need to be pushed open or closed with a fork lift on occasion which will scratch the paint and start a rust spot on the bottom of the doors at each end. I have a few small hoppers in my collection which are painted for Santa Fe and used in cement service. I went to a craft store and bought a bottle of water based acrylic craft paint that looked like a cement color. These hoppers carry powdered cement in bulk, not bags. They are loaded from above out of silos, so I expect that some of the cement will spill next to the hatch, then rain will wash it down the side of the car. I thinned the paint with denatured alcohol to a thin wash and applied it to the top of the cars with a brush letting it run down the sides. Open hoppers are not loaded gently. Whether they carry ore, or coal, whatever will be dropped in by some sort of loader. There will be no sign of paint left inside except maybe at the very top of the inside. They will probably not be rusted inside except for a very light patina when empty. The inside of an open hopper will be bare steel from loads constantly cleaning off rust and paint. Everytime coal is loaded into a hopper, it is just like sand blasting the inside of the hopper. Gondolas will tend to be the same way, but not always. If the gondola is used to haul scrap metal, it is just dumped in and will make the inside look like a hopper, but if machinery is hauled in the gon, it will be loaded carefully and lashed into place to protect it. When the shop I work at was located in downtown Los Angeles, there was a company right behind us that manufactured tanks. They would receive gondolas loaded with steel in various shapes and sizes. There would be plates, rolls, and angle iron of various web sizes. The steel would be stacked carefully, banded, and loaded on wooden blocks to protect the new steel. As soon as the steel was off loaded from the gons, the empty gons would stay on the tracks and become scrap metal bins from the tank manufacturing process. When the gons were full of scrap metal, the railroad would pick them up, and deliver a fresh load of steel. The new steel was stacked carefully in the gon, but the scrap was just thrown in. I hope this will give you an idea of how to weather different cars.
  12. medavis

    medavis New Member

    Thanks Russ, That will help alot.
  13. Tileguy

    Tileguy Member

    Oh My, this is a huge subject!!!
    truly, weathering is something one needs to discover with practicing differant techniques to find those that suit your tastes.

    read as much as you can in the forums by using the search feature, read about HOW individuals get the effects in the photo's they post.
    Do a goggle search on weathering models. Dont overlook military modelers techniques, many are very good!!
    Check out the weathering doctors site

    Here are a few more Links: Equipment.htm

    This should keep you occupied and out of trouble for the rest of the year :D

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