Weathering freight cars


Gene <bierglaeser@...>
 

My son (who models the DM&IR but I love him anyway) is considering testing whether leaving freight cars out in the sun will "weather" them. Has anyone tried this?
Gene Green


John
 

I've melted the roofs of a couple of PRR passenger cars out in the sun here in Florida (I just wanted to dry them) after painting them flat black. The Florida sun does wonders for drying brass after painting, however.

-- John

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, "Gene" <bierglaeser@...> wrote:

My son (who models the DM&IR but I love him anyway) is considering testing whether leaving freight cars out in the sun will "weather" them. Has anyone tried this?
Gene Green


Jim Betz
 

Gene,

When I got into model railroading (in the 80's, what I did as
a child was "play with trains") one of my first projects was to
try to create some GN FAs. I started with an HO shell and
was going to super detail it ... but wanted "see thru" fan
grills in the rear. I spent a couple of days opening up the
space between each of the blades grill - by first cutting thru
and then using the back of an Xacto to scrape them and
finally sanding to 'perfection'.
I was really proud of, and happy with the results ... so I
took them to work to show them to a model railroading
buddy of mine. I took it in and showed him and got the
praise I expected ... then took it back out to the car and
set it on the floor of the car where they wouldn't get
any sun (dash and doors keeping them in shade - and in
an Athearn blue box.
Came back out at noon to go to lunch. Opened the box
to discover that the shell had "wilted" due to the heat in
the car (this was in San Jose in November and was not a
hot day).

It was years before I finally was able to do an FA project.

One of the LHS had some Athearn Daylight cars in the
window for -years- and the boxes they were sitting on and
the models themselves did fade (morning sun only and
the window display was 'protected' by the air conditioning
in the store ... and the models still 'melted'.

****

Sunlight may be the same "fading agent" as what causes
those colors on the prototype ... but it just isn't feasible for
our models. It takes too long - and almost always attacks
the plastic and deforming the shapes before the fading is
even noticeable.
Furthermore - the result isn't really "right".

****

I have experimented with many, many different "weathering
agents" over the years - trying to get that "faded paint" look
that I think your son wants to do.
Vinegar, commercial stuff, acetic acid, lacquer thinner, bleach,
very thin acrylic washes, detergents, thinned out battery acid,
even some of my wife's hair products. I have never even
gotten close to the look of "paint that has oxidized due to
time". I have also discovered that "what works for one
model" (attacks the paint in any way similar to fading) does
not work for the next one (different paint formulas!).

When I say "never even gotten close" I'm talking about
not even usable. Most of my experiments have been done
on box cars and other such "expendable" models ... and I'm
really, REALLY glad I didn't use a model that I'd have to
strip and start over.

****

Some guys seem to have done "fairly well" with thin
acrylic washes that are "just a few shades off of the
color of the paint they are trying to fade" ... I have not
been able to do that. And those guys I'm talking about -
don't do it on "lots of models" ... one or two and then
they go back to "regular" weathering.

****

BTW - a guy I used to hang out with tried starting
out with a "faded" color ... actually painting the model
in "faded" paint. His color was acceptable ... but the
model wasn't "successful" ... and he didn't do any
others. He also said that guys who should know - would
tell him that he "hadn't painted the model the "correct"
color" ... *G*
- Jim Betz


Tony Thompson
 

Jim Betz wrote:
Some guys seem to have done "fairly well" with thin acrylic washes that are "just a few shades off of the color of the paint they are trying to fade" ... I have not been able to do that. And those guys I'm talking about - don't do it on "lots of models" ... one or two and then they go back to "regular" weathering.
Gee, Jim, I've done exactly that on several hundred freight cars, including a lot of Otis McGee's fleet. Give me a call and you can come over for a demo. <g>

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


CJ Riley
 

Jim,
I have had consistently good results using powdered color or chalk (and sometimes eye shadow) to represent faded (sometimes called chalking) paint.  Since the oxidizing of the paint creates a slight texture, the powdered material achieves that subtle fade and oxidation. The appearance changes slightly with a light application of fixative but the sense of fading and texture remains. I have not been able to achieve that appearance any other way.

CJ Riley

Bainbridge Island WA

--- On Wed, 6/12/13, jimbetz <jimbetz@jimbetz.com> wro


I have experimented with many, many different "weathering

agents" over the years - trying to get that "faded paint" look

that I think your son wants to do.
 
I have never even

gotten close to the look of "paint that has oxidized due to

time". .


















[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]


Paul Hillman
 

I thought that I'd achieved a reasonable paint and lettering fading-effect, by lightly, and completely, over-spraying a finished, decaled car with it's main color, of water-based acrylic paint, let it sit just a few minutes, then brush over the car heavily with denatured alcohol -or- isopropyl alcohol (I don't remember which one because I haven't done this for quite a while) and I came up with a pretty natural looking affect. I think someone on this list mentioned doing this type of thing before.

I will be trying this soon as I have several cars to weather and put on the rails.

Paul Hillman

----- Original Message -----
From: cj riley<mailto:cjriley42@yahoo.com>
To: STMFC@yahoogroups.com<mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Sent: Thursday, June 13, 2013 10:07 AM
Subject: Re: [STMFC] Re: Weathering freight cars



Jim,
I have had consistently good results using powdered color or chalk (and sometimes eye shadow) to represent faded (sometimes called chalking) paint. Since the oxidizing of the paint creates a slight texture, the powdered material achieves that subtle fade and oxidation. The appearance changes slightly with a light application of fixative but the sense of fading and texture remains. I have not been able to achieve that appearance any other way.

CJ Riley

Bainbridge Island WA

--- On Wed, 6/12/13, jimbetz <jimbetz@jimbetz.com<mailto:jimbetz%40jimbetz.com>> wro

I have experimented with many, many different "weathering

agents" over the years - trying to get that "faded paint" look

that I think your son wants to do.

I have never even

gotten close to the look of "paint that has oxidized due to

time". .


Craig Zeni
 

On Jun 12, 2013, at 11:39 PM, STMFC@yahoogroups.com wrote:

2a. Re: :[STMFC] Weathering freight cars
Posted by: "Tony Thompson" tony@signaturepress.com sigpress
Date: Wed Jun 12, 2013 2:16 pm ((PDT))

Armand Premo wrote:
For what it's worth,I believe the most grievous error a modeler can make is to over do weathering.My taste lean more to subtle weathering.An overly weathered car will stand out as much as a brightly colored car.Visitors will remember it.A technique that I favor is to star with the basic color and go from there.Others might favor mixing a diluted tone.I do not profess to be an expert on weathering ,but feel strongly that it is a matter of individual taste.After all it is Your model and as long as you are satisfied with it that's really all that matters.

Richard Hendrickson may chime in here, as he believes, on considerable photographic evidence, that it is difficult to over-weather steam era freight cars. But I would disagree with the idea that as long as YOU like it, it's okay. Um, no. On this topic I like to quote Tony Koester's comment, that if you are really interested in model RAILROADING, you try to duplicate aspects of real world railroads. (Otherwise you are just having fun with train models.) Certainly an entire steam-era freight car fleet which is uniformly and lightly weathered cannot be said to duplicate reality.
As Armand says, it's true that ONE severely weathered car will stand out among lightly weathered or unweathered ones. I believe that instead, there should be a gradation, from almost new cars to ones on which it is hard to read the lettering, with a range of cars weathered everywhere in between.
Of course I agree with Armand that weathering, like so much else, is a matter of individual taste, and that we all satisfy primarily ourselves, at the end of the day. But to me, that does NOT mean that whatever you choose to do is equally realistic.
I'd like to offer this photo from September 1958 in Buford, Wyoming. Some very weathered cars, a couple not so much. My favorite is the NS Rwy car in front of the ACL car...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/clean-dirty-1958

Craig Zeni
Mayberry, NC


Bruce Smith
 

BRUCEFORD!

My favorite is the NKP right behind the ACL car <VBG> Talk about a range of weathering in just 3 cars...


Regards

Bruce


Bruce F. Smith

Auburn, AL

https://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/


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

__

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On Jun 13, 2013, at 2:01 PM, Craig Zeni wrote:

I'd like to offer this photo from September 1958 in Buford, Wyoming. Some very weathered cars, a couple not so much. My favorite is the NS Rwy car in front of the ACL car...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/clean-dirty-1958

Craig Zeni


Bill Schneider
 

Man. there really IS nothing at Bruceford.. errr.. Buford!



Obviously Mike just took that NS car out of the box. He kind of overdid the
NKP car I think...



Great shot.


Bill Schneider



From: STMFC@yahoogroups.com [mailto:STMFC@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of
Bruce F. Smith
Sent: Thursday, June 13, 2013 3:27 PM
To: <STMFC@yahoogroups.com>
Subject: Re:[STMFC] Re: Weathering freight cars





BRUCEFORD!

My favorite is the NKP right behind the ACL car <VBG> Talk about a range of
weathering in just 3 cars...

Regards

Bruce

Bruce F. Smith

Auburn, AL

https://www5.vetmed.auburn.edu/~smithbf/

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

__

/ &#92;

__<+--+>________________&#92;__/___ ________________________________

|- ______/ O O &#92;_______ -| | __ __ __ __ __ __ __ __ |

| / 4999 PENNSYLVANIA 4999 &#92; | ||__||__||__||__||__||__||__||__||

|/_____________________________&#92;|_|________________________________|

| O--O &#92;0 0 0 0/ O--O | 0-0-0 0-0-0

On Jun 13, 2013, at 2:01 PM, Craig Zeni wrote:

I'd like to offer this photo from September 1958 in Buford, Wyoming. Some
very weathered cars, a couple not so much. My favorite is the NS Rwy car in
front of the ACL car...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/clean-dirty-1958

Craig Zeni


Tony Thompson
 

Bruce Smith wrote:
My favorite is the NKP right behind the ACL car <VBG> Talk about a range of weathering in just 3 cars...
Nah. That's one of Armand's "grievous errors," isn't it? <g>

Tony Thompson Editor, Signature Press, Berkeley, CA
2906 Forest Ave., Berkeley, CA 94705 www.signaturepress.com
(510) 540-6538; fax, (510) 540-1937; e-mail, tony@signaturepress.com
Publishers of books on railroad history


Richard Hendrickson
 

On Jun 13, 2013, at 12:01 PM, Craig Zeni <clzeni@gmail.com> wrote:


I'd like to offer this photo from September 1958 in Buford, Wyoming. Some very weathered cars, a couple not so much. My favorite is the NS Rwy car in front of the ACL car...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/clean-dirty-1958

Craig, that's a very instructive photo provided you remember that, by 9/58, steam locomotives were largely gone from the North American railroads. A decade earlier, those cars would have been equally weathered to various degrees (as the photo clearly shows) but a whole lot dirtier.

Richard Hendrickson


Craig Zeni
 

On Jun 13, 2013, at 9:47 PM, STMFC@yahoogroups.com wrote:___________
3.7. Re: Weathering freight cars
Posted by: "Richard Hendrickson" rhendrickson@opendoor.com n1605g
Date: Thu Jun 13, 2013 6:46 pm ((PDT))

On Jun 13, 2013, at 12:01 PM, Craig Zeni <clzeni@gmail.com> wrote:


I'd like to offer this photo from September 1958 in Buford, Wyoming. Some very weathered cars, a couple not so much. My favorite is the NS Rwy car in front of the ACL car...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/clean-dirty-1958

Craig, that's a very instructive photo provided you remember that, by 9/58, steam locomotives were largely gone from the North American railroads. A decade earlier, those cars would have been equally weathered to various degrees (as the photo clearly shows) but a whole lot dirtier.
Indeed - I picked that up from your clinics at Cocoa :) though I'm still using Tony's acrylic washes for weathering. I'm modeling circa 1950 so there won't be many cars as clean as that ACL or NS car and more like the C&O car and NKP car...

CZ
Grievous Error NC :) :)


Charlie Duckworth
 

Here's a example from Jack Delano of the differences in the weathering on eastern RR cars vs western RRs in the 1940's.

http://chnm.gmu.edu/courses/magic/westover/images/provisolg.jpg

Charlie Duckworth

--- In STMFC@yahoogroups.com, Richard Hendrickson <rhendrickson@...> wrote:

On Jun 13, 2013, at 12:01 PM, Craig Zeni <clzeni@...> wrote:


I'd like to offer this photo from September 1958 in Buford, Wyoming. Some very weathered cars, a couple not so much. My favorite is the NS Rwy car in front of the ACL car...

http://preview.tinyurl.com/clean-dirty-1958

Craig, that's a very instructive photo provided you remember that, by 9/58, steam locomotives were largely gone from the North American railroads. A decade earlier, those cars would have been equally weathered to various degrees (as the photo clearly shows) but a whole lot dirtier.

Richard Hendrickson





Jim Betz
 

Hi,

I use acrylic washes as my "primary technique" for weathering.

And I mix the washes for each weathering sessions - and vary
the mix of black, white, red oxide, brown oxide each time.
In addition, I vary the amount of wash applied to the individual
cars in any one weathering session. And some times I am
doing only 1 car and other times as many as 5 or more.
Finally - I often vary the mix of the colors in the wash(es)
during the session ... usually, but not always, working from
the darker shades to lighter ones later in the session.

I also almost always do some "dry brush weathering" that
involves applying weathering colors to the "details" such as
the fans/grills on a diesel, the trucks, the parts of the model
that are metal on the prototype.

And, of course, the under body, ends, and roofs are treated
differently than the sides, etc., etc., etc.

****

My objectives/goals for weathering are pretty simple to
list:

1) Every piece I do "isn't finished" until it gets some level
of weathering. That varies from "just" dull coat to a
level that is referred to as "heavy weathering". (Yes,
that "every" includes locos and passenger cars and
cabeese and plastic and brass!)

2) When you look at "a yard/train comprised of all of my
cars" if you

a) take a quick glance you would say "they all look
the same" and "they are all weathered" (especially
if they are STMFCs)

b) take the time to look/study more you would say
"yes, there are fairly large differences in the
amount of weathering from car to car" ... and
you would be able to identify the individual cars
as having been in some particular service or
part of the country ... where appropriate.

c) in depth study of the cars would reveal different
techniques and/or fairly large differences in the
way a particular technique has been applied.

Those are my goals. I'm sure many of you share them.
I'm also certain that many of you have different goals.
And we are "all correct"!
- Jim

P.S. Go back and look at that pic of the train in Colorado
in 1958 ... the first glance says "the cars in this train
are all weathered" ... then with just a bit more study
you see that some are actually fairly new and some
make it even hard to tell what road they are ... and all
the cars near the power (around the curve) look
"all the same" and other than knowing which are
box cars and which aren't there is very little other
intel available.


Mikebrock
 

Jim Betz says:

"Go back and look at that pic of the train in Colorado
in 1958"

I beg your pardon. Colorado? Hmmmpf. Wyoming.

Bill Schneider says:

"Man. there really IS nothing at Bruceford.. errr.. Buford!"

Nothing there? Why...just look at those signals. And the...uh...trees.

I might comment that, while in the distance one can see a locomotive, I would speculate that the smoke is being blown over the engine by wind. Surely the train is motionless...given that it is at Buford.

Mike Brock