Re: Question about weathering

Rob & Bev Manley

Ten years ago I was on a mission to find the ultimate weathering product. I liked chalks but didn't like the vanishing act they perform when overcoated with a flat finish. By the way my favorite Flats are Scalecoat, Model Master and......Windsor Newton Galleria Acrylic Flat in the 8oz. bottle for about $8.00. At Blick art store I walked into this PanPastel display. I was intrigued by their Oxide Red color and about 6 others. Bev would only let me buy one because she knew I had tried powders, chalks and others with little happiness. Unlike other modelers I picked up my Central Valley NP stock car, not a Bluebox boxcar, and attacked the roof. It was everything I wanted. easy application and professional looking color. 
The only weathering product I know of that is forgiving and mostly removable is Pan Pastel. I say "mostly" because White painted models will show a ghost of the color when removed. 
Pan Pastel is a high grade Artist product made of mostly pigment with a binder added, 96 colors plus a "Colorless Blender" that allows you to tone down the color to more of a tint. You need a good Flat finish on the model first and can apply with their SofftTools applicators, Micro-Brushes or artist oil brushes for tight spaces.
I have been doing RPM clinics on these for years and also have a Blog on their website for us modelers.
There are quite a few and at the bottom of the pages is a note to click on for more. Pan Pastel is also usable likw a water based product. You can apply to wood and use as a stain. It mixes well with watercolor pencils like the Derwent brand. 
Honestly, it's the only thing I use now. My airbrush is only for painting and flat finishing. You have the option of using a Flat to protect the Pan Pastels from heavy handling or not. I stopped using an overcoat and I am always taking y rolling stock in and out of my A-Line carrying trays. I haven't noticed any significant loss of color. 
When applying the color you should put some pressure on the applicator, that helps it bond to the surface.
Thank you for allowing me to share this.
Attached is a Rock Island B-unit that I matched to a fodo from
The CB&Q gondola is a mandatory freight car WIP content. This shows how to use Pan Pastel as a stain.

Rob Manley
"Better modeling through personal embarrassment"

On Wednesday, September 23, 2020, 12:12:41 PM CDT, Aley, Jeff A <jeff.a.aley@...> wrote:

Brianna, it seems, independently discovered one of the corollaries to Murphy’s Law: “There are two kinds of dirt – the dark kind, which is attracted to light objects, and the light kind, which is attracted to dark objects.”






From: <> On Behalf Of Bruce Smith
Sent: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 7:43 AM
Subject: Re: [RealSTMFC] Question about weathering


Ray, Jim,


Additional commentary interspersed ;)


On Sep 23, 2020, at 9:21 AM, Jim Betz <jimbetz@...> wrote:


  2) Darker colors on the roof and lighter colors on the bottom.


As a rule of thumb, everything goes towards a mid-tone. Brianna, my daughter, and I gave a clinic at an SER NMRA annual convention when she was the tender age of 5. She had many things to contribute, but perhaps the most seminal was “If it is light, make it darker, and if it is dark, make it lighter”.  BTW, the old theater adage “don’t work with children and animals” is entirely true. Brianna stole the show. 


And no pressure, but if a 5-year old can weather cars, so can you ;)

  3) Cars sit more than they move - a lot more.  So any "streaks"
       need to be vertical rather than horizontal.


Except passenger cars and head end cars, which may have a more all-over weathering pattern, with some horizontal aspects. Locomotives also have patterns that both relate to gravity and movement.

  5) A final light dusting with an air brush helps a lot - I call this the
      "blending coat" - I usually use a very thin "weathered black" color
      for this but have also used just dullcoat and other such.


Vary this color to vary your weathering. Alternative are Harbor Mist Grey, Railroad tie brown, 

  6) Weathered equipment is never "shiny".


In real life, some equipment can retain a shine, whilst being weathered. However, I have never found that gloss looks anything but “toy-like” on a model, even if the prototype was shiny.

 10) Rust is a job best done sparingly.


And remember that there are infinite shades of rust.


P.S. There are many different 'methods' - I prefer acrylic washes.

        Some guys prefer pan pastels.  Some guys like to do it all
        using an air brush (I consider this to be the least successful).
        In the end you will develop your own 'process'.  Don't forget
        to vary what you do from car to car - such as the shade of
        this coat, how much of a particular coat you use, what order
        you do different steps, etc.


I try to use different methods to mix things up to avoid the everything looks the same problem, but also to build skills with different media. 





Bruce F. Smith            

Auburn, AL

"Some days you are the bug, some days you are the windshield."



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