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Weathering Wagons

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David Holman
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As mentioned in my blog, have recently completed two SLNCR brake vans. Construction was fairly straightforward, with a plasticard shell, detailed with Evergreeen microstrip on Tyrconnel models whitemetal chassis. Initial painting was by using Halford's grey primer spray can, then hand lettered with a white gel pen. The first picture shows them in this initial, raw state.DSCN0369.jpg

 

Then used a fibreglass pen to rub down the paint an lettering to make it appear worn. Afterwards a wash of 'dirty thinners' [Precision roof dirt], was loaded on by brush, holding the van at an angle. This means all the dark colouring is pulled into scratches and cracks, like dirt would be on the real thing...

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The next pics show my GW model rivet press, which I use to emboss rivets onto micro strip for wagon strapping, plus the Freestone Models pack of weathering powders. There a quite a few options out there these days, but these are the ones I get on with. The littlle make up tubs make them easy to store and apply.

 

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Before the weathering powders though, I spend time painting the metal work - mainly wheels in this case. A blend of Humbrol 53 [gunmetal], matt black and leather [63] give a nicely worn effect, as first described by Martyn Welch in The Art of Weathering.

 

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The Freestone powders were then dusted on using a medium sized paint brush, as appropriate. The key here has to be to work to a suitable photo. It doesn't have to be the wagon in question [though this helps], but do work on what you can SEE, not what you imagine. A lot of the powder gets brushed off and can be saved in a new 'generic dirt' tub for future use. The final [and very important] trick is to then give your model a dusting of talc. This has the effect of softening the work and gives a neat, dusty, effect. Obviously, much depends on the level of grime you are applying and in both case here, this was pretty heavy. I feel it looks ok, though that is for others to judge. Hope this helps!

 

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No varnish Mr P - whatever the powders are made of, they stick quite well without it. Am sure the process of roughing up the surface keeps the particles in the crevices and most is brushed off anyway. Doubt if it will stand up to a lot of handling, but my fiddle yard is a full train turntable, so shouldn't be a problem [i hope!]

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