rivet decals


John Nehrich <nehrij@...>
 

At the RPI club, we used to wince when Todd Sullivan explained how he
created lines of rivets by slicing them off other plastic models and glued
them on, one at a time. We would joke about making rivet decals.
When I was a kid, there was a candy that consisted of colored dots
(probably 101% sugar with food coloring) that were attached to what looked
like cash register tape. This is what we were thinking about with rivet
decals.
Now would be possible to make a series of dark crescents on a decal to
suggest the shadowing that rivets cause.
But when Bryon was explaining the problem of embossing rivets on thin
styrene for a tank wrapper, and how this in effect reinforced that area and
created a stiffer area, I got to thinking. There are expensive business
cards that are printed with a thick ink, so that you can feel the printing
when you run your fingers across it. So if someone make a black decal, say,
and then printed on the white lettering for a suitable tank car scheme and
then printed a series of dots with this thicker ink, the car could be
decalled all at once and create the rivets at the same time. And to do
different tank cars, such as multiple compartment/domes, you would just have
to change the printing instead of tooling costs.
Then if this was practical, maybe you could print everywhere with this
thick ink EXCEPT where you wanted a groove or seam and do box car and reefer
sides.
I've been using full surface decals for most of our buildings so being
able to decal a big sheet is not at all difficult. My project someday is do
whole car sides to capture the subtle effects of weathering, starting with
real photos of cars. The hardest thing is finding good period color photos
(not from a printed source like a book as you pick up the dot pattern). -
John

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