Topics

ATSF freight car red


Jon Miller
 

    Probably old news but need some ATSF freight car red.   Any help here about brand and/or mix that might get me close.  Need to do touch up work on Walthers wood cabooses.  Just not sure what is available and don't want to open my last bottle of Floquil ATSF mineral brown.  It's a "REV 1" and I'm sure once open it will go bad!

    Seems Model Masters (1785 rust) would do.  Do they still sell Model Masters?
-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS


StephenK
 

Tru-color makes two versions of this--one for pre-1945 cars and one for post-1945.   I have used their paint and it is great--it sprays perfectly right out of the bottle and dries glossy for decaling.

Here is the website:

And, check this out:


And no, I am not affiliated--just a happy user!

Steve Kay

 




Tim O'Connor
 


Or, you can just try to match actual prototype paint chips.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/timboconnor/17098035956/

Putting a label on a bottle does not make it accurate. Tru-Color
is known to sell the same color with more than one label.

Tim O'Connor


 >> Tru-color makes two versions... one for pre-1945 cars and one for post-1945.


Fred Jansz
 

TC claims their colors are based on actual RR swatches.The same ones Tim showed in his link. If these are not 'accurate', what must we rely on then? 60 year old color photos? The zillion reds offered by just as many modelmakers? I'm researching steam era WP BCR for instance. WP red offered by TC is way too purple in my humble opinion and might be taken from a later swatch, maybe even 1960's. The WP reds suggested by the many craftsman kit manuals I own all differ from eachother. There are recepies mixing Floquil (used that 40 years ago) in 1/4 and 1/2 amounts and I end up with pink. My point is: as long as you cannot measure from an actual paint swatch that's been out of the sun since 1945, the right color is always a wild guess. However, like the SP yard photo showed us a while back, there's always a base color used by RR's which weathers during the time. It's that specific steam era WP red I'm searching for. Untill that day I won't paint my precious and expensive craftsman kits (and my kitbashed ones) just because of the risk of ending up with a row of 'worthless' cars because the color is not right... Cheers from Holland, Fred 'WP' Jansz.


Scott H. Haycock
 

See Fred Jansz' post below

Fred makes some good points about trying to find "accurate" colors, but he falls into the fallacy of assuming this is an achievable goal. He mentions the swatches that Tim posted. How were these photographed? If Film, which one? All films were based on different chemistry which tinted each color differently. Kodachrome versus  Fuji (a Japanese film company), had a different color palette, for instance.

Today, in the world of digital photography, there are tools you can use to standardize the colors in your photography. If you digitize older film images, you can also color adjust them somewhat, but there is a learning curve to all this.

Also, The colors you perceive outdoors, and the colors you see under indoor, dimmer light on you model railroad, won't come close to matching, and you can't rely on your eyes to ascertain the difference. All light sources are measured in degrees kelvin, including outdoor light (sunrise, midday late afternoon, are different),  photo flash, and all forms of indoor lighting. Colors appear different as these light sources vary by their temperature.

The bottom line is, It's impossible to know for certain about color based on old photographs, or faded color chips. Find a photo you like and try to match the color as close as you can. Paint a sample piece of scrap- I use cardstock- then look at it under your layout lighting. I'll bet it doesn't look nearly as good! Lighten it, and try again. When it looks good, Paint your model and move on to the next one!

Modelers spend far too much time worrying about finding factory made colors, when mixing you own is less expensive, provides more variety in shading, and looks better under layout lighting.

Scott Haycock


 

TC claims their colors are based on actual RR swatches.The same ones Tim showed in his link. If these are not 'accurate', what must we rely on then? 60 year old color photos? The zillion reds offered by just as many modelmakers? I'm researching steam era WP BCR for instance. WP red offered by TC is way too purple in my humble opinion and might be taken from a later swatch, maybe even 1960's. The WP reds suggested by the many craftsman kit manuals I own all differ from eachother. There are recepies mixing Floquil (used that 40 years ago) in 1/4 and 1/2 amounts and I end up with pink. My point is: as long as you cannot measure from an actual paint swatch that's been out of the sun since 1945, the right color is always a wild guess. However, like the SP yard photo showed us a while back, there's always a base color used by RR's which weathers during the time. It's that specific steam era WP red I'm searching for. Untill that day I won't paint my precious and expensive craftsman kits (and my kitbashed ones) just because of the risk of ending up with a row of 'worthless' cars because the color is not right... Cheers from Holland, Fred 'WP' Jansz.



Scott H. Haycock
 

My previous post got me to thinking about the Pantone color standards, and how they may be useful in our hobby. That brought me to this link:   http://www.pantone-colours.com/

These colors are standardized and may be useful for color matching our hobby paints with prototype color examples, and digital images of freight cars. In the latter category, it may be useful to "eye drop" these samples to photographs in Lightroom, or Photoshop, or PS Elements, to get a close match in Pantone, and then a hobby paint color swatch.

If accurate color matches are your thing, this method may produce useful results. 

Scott Haycock 


 

See Fred Jansz' post below

Fred makes some good points about trying to find "accurate" colors, but he falls into the fallacy of assuming this is an achievable goal. He mentions the swatches that Tim posted. How were these photographed? If Film, which one? All films were based on different chemistry which tinted each color differently. Kodachrome versus  Fuji (a Japanese film company), had a different color palette, for instance.

Today, in the world of digital photography, there are tools you can use to standardize the colors in your photography. If you digitize older film images, you can also color adjust them somewhat, but there is a learning curve to all this.

Also, The colors you perceive outdoors, and the colors you see under indoor, dimmer light on you model railroad, won't come close to matching, and you can't rely on your eyes to ascertain the difference. All light sources are measured in degrees kelvin, including outdoor light (sunrise, midday late afternoon, are different),  photo flash, and all forms of indoor lighting. Colors appear different as these light sources vary by their temperature.

The bottom line is, It's impossible to know for certain about color based on old photographs, or faded color chips. Find a photo you like and try to match the color as close as you can. Paint a sample piece of scrap- I use cardstock- then look at it under your layout lighting. I'll bet it doesn't look nearly as good! Lighten it, and try again. When it looks good, Paint your model and move on to the next one!

Modelers spend far too much time worrying about finding factory made colors, when mixing you own is less expensive, provides more variety in shading, and looks better under layout lighting.

Scott Haycock



Fred Jansz
 

Scott, RR paint swatches are not photographed by paint manufacturers but scanned with calibrated industrial spectrophotometer. The automobile industry does it like this since ages. In fact many RR colors are simply based on automobile swatches. So when the WP museum in Portola finally finds that hidden but oh so wanted WP red paint swatch it has to be scanned, not photographed. In fact I understand there are nowadays APP's available for you phone so you can scan a color and translate it to for instance an automobile, RAL or Pantone color.
Cheers Fred


gtws00
 

Here is a link to a Paint Conversion Chart of Floquil Colors by Microscale. It is in pdf format and shows Model Masters Rust to be the substitute for SantaFe Mineral Red. The Model Masters site shows it as availble.



George Toman


Scott H. Haycock
 

It's a shame That tru-color isn't mentioned.They are working hard to provide the RR specific colors that many modelers are looking for.



Scott Haycock


 

Here is a link to a Paint Conversion Chart of Floquil Colors by Microscale. It is in pdf format and shows Model Masters Rust to be the substitute for SantaFe Mineral Red. The Model Masters site shows it as availble.



George Toman



Garth Groff <sarahsan@...>
 

Fred,

WP paint colors definitely changed over time. If you have Jim Eager's WESTERN PACIFIC COLOR GUIDE, you can get a pretty good idea, but you still have to account for weathering differently, different paint lots, repaints, plus the film and lighting conditions of the original photo. I think Jim's book is the best guide we have.

WP/SN wooden cars often show up as a very intense FCR, almost PRR red. You can see this on pages 19 and 20, but the two views of the single-sheathed boxcars still look different. The two SN cars on the next page are fairly consistent, but a bit duller. But compare these with the wooden cabooses on pages 120-123, and you get a whole pallet of different reds.

The various steel cars show quite a bit of variety. I think the original paint on most of the pre-1950s cars was a fairly rich FCR, but it weathered and rusted differently from car to car, and you have to take into account that some of these cars are repaints. OTOH, the view of WPMW 0232 on page 25 is badly color shifted by the photographic process. The red is way too saturated (besides, it is a 1959 repaint, nearly out of our era). The correct color is probably closer to WP 23001 on page 26, but note that the color is different from SN 24XX coupled to it.

The photo of new WP 19622 in the late 1954 scheme on page 34 is quite interesting. It appears in the photo as a much lighter orange-red. Again, this could be a color shift, but I don't see this in the foreground. Also note the yellow journal box covers, no doubt for roller bearing trucks.

My advice is go ahead and paint your cars using Jim's examples where you can, and then weather the heck of out of them. They're going to turn out differently, just like the real cars did.

If anybody criticizes you, I can send some of "my boys" over to lean on them a bit. "Hey, I hear yous got a beef wit' my pal Fred and his paint jobs. You like dat kneecap? Wanna keep it? We be seeing yous buddy."

Yours Aye,


Garth Groff

On 3/20/16 5:22 AM, fred@... [STMFC] wrote:
 

TC claims their colors are based on actual RR swatches.The same ones Tim showed in his link. If these are not 'accurate', what must we rely on then? 60 year old color photos? The zillion reds offered by just as many modelmakers? I'm researching steam era WP BCR for instance. WP red offered by TC is way too purple in my humble opinion and might be taken from a later swatch, maybe even 1960's. The WP reds suggested by the many craftsman kit manuals I own all differ from eachother. There are recepies mixing Floquil (used that 40 years ago) in 1/4 and 1/2 amounts and I end up with pink. My point is: as long as you cannot measure from an actual paint swatch that's been out of the sun since 1945, the right color is always a wild guess. However, like the SP yard photo showed us a while back, there's always a base color used by RR's which weathers during the time. It's that specific steam era WP red I'm searching for. Untill that day I won't paint my precious and expensive craftsman kits (and my kitbashed ones) just because of the risk of ending up with a row of 'worthless' cars because the color is not right... Cheers from Holland, Fred 'WP' Jansz.



Jon Miller
 

On 3/20/2016 6:00 AM, George Toman gtws00@... [STMFC] wrote:
shows Model Masters Rust to be the substitute for SantaFe Mineral Red. The Model Masters site shows it as availble.

    But where to find MM paint.  I called The Train Shop in SJ and they have Tru-Color.  So a trip to SJ next week.  It's only a 20 minute drive but then in old age I get lazy.  I only want a small jar of touch-up to sorta match the Walthers ATSF wood cabooses.  All those little pieces of wire one has to add.

    Discussions about paint always turn into I'm up to my a** in alligators when all I wanted to do was drain the swamp.  [very big grin]

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS


John Barry
 

Jon

The various Hobbytown shops usually carry the Testors ModelMaster paints. I got quite a few colors to fill out my paint locker from the Folsom Hobbytown. You might also try Fundemoneum in Rohnert Park. In their previous incarnation as a Hobbytown they carried the full line.

John Barry



On March 20, 2016, at 11:52 AM, "Jon Miller atsfus@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:


 

On 3/20/2016 6:00 AM, George Toman gtws00@... [STMFC] wrote:
shows Model Masters Rust to be the substitute for SantaFe Mineral Red. The Model Masters site shows it as availble.

    But where to find MM paint.  I called The Train Shop in SJ and they have Tru-Color.  So a trip to SJ next week.  It's only a 20 minute drive but then in old age I get lazy.  I only want a small jar of touch-up to sorta match the Walthers ATSF wood cabooses.  All those little pieces of wire one has to add.

    Discussions about paint always turn into I'm up to my a** in alligators when all I wanted to do was drain the swamp.  [very big grin]

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS


Lee Thwaits
 

Not mentioned is the way each individual sees colors from the changes in your eyes as you age. I recently had cataract surgery in both eyes and it has completely changed my color perception.

Lee Thwaits


Schuyler Larrabee
 

I was at the “Spare Time Shop,” Marlborough MA yesterday.  Very large display of Model Master as well as several other brands of paint.

 

Schuyler

Jon

The various Hobbytown shops usually carry the Testors ModelMaster paints. I got quite a few colors to fill out my paint locker from the Folsom Hobbytown. You might also try Fundemoneum in Rohnert Park. In their previous incarnation as a Hobbytown they carried the full line.

John Barry



On March 20, 2016, at 11:52 AM, "Jon Miller atsfus@... [STMFC]" <STMFC@...> wrote:


 

On 3/20/2016 6:00 AM, George Toman gtws00@... [STMFC] wrote:

shows Model Masters Rust to be the substitute for SantaFe Mineral Red. The Model Masters site shows it as availble.


    But where to find MM paint.  I called The Train Shop in SJ and they have Tru-Color.  So a trip to SJ next week.  It's only a 20 minute drive but then in old age I get lazy.  I only want a small jar of touch-up to sorta match the Walthers ATSF wood cabooses.  All those little pieces of wire one has to add.

    Discussions about paint always turn into I'm up to my a** in alligators when all I wanted to do was drain the swamp.  [very big grin]


-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS


Tim O'Connor
 

Fred makes some good points about trying to find "accurate" colors, but he falls
> into the fallacy of assuming this is an achievable goal. He mentions the swatches
> that Tim posted. How were these photographed?


Not photographed -- digital scans. Yes, the file is compressed (JPEG) while
I still have the original (TIFF). But I'm not going that rathole -- Just said
what I said to point out that most commercial paint products are at best just
approximations.

Tim


Greg Martin
 

I am not an avid Santa Fe modeler but I do more than just dabble in it. I think I have a very good eye for color. I have used Tru-Color Paints on my most recent Santa Fe freight car and #19 you have pointed out here is a very poor representation of that color. Now saying that is nothing more than conjecture and I should have some basis for my statement and the correction to the TCP color, which as to mix it 50/50 with B&M Maroon.
 
TCP is not a good option in my most humble opinion to anything but current BNSF Brown. 
 
I based the decision on color photos, and compared the color to other works, like the color use on Red Caboose/IMWX ARR 1937 10'0" IH boxcar which I always considered a good match, and the work of Richard Hendrickson. I am fortunate enough to have some of his paints from his estate. Although the mix is not a great match it is a good base color and I can weather from there. ATSF Mineral Brown at least to me shows some crimson in the color.  
 
Don't hold back, open that bottle of ATSF Mineral Brown from Floquil, don't put your thinned mixture back in the bottle, tighten the lid, and store it upside down to preserve it.
 
Greg Martin  
 
Eventually all things merge into one and a river runs through it.
Norman Maclean
 

In a message dated 3/19/2016 11:55:28 A.M. Pacific Daylight Time, STMFC@... writes:

Tru-color makes two versions of this--one for pre-1945 cars and one for post-1945.   I have used their paint and it is great--it sprays perfectly right out of the bottle and dries glossy for decaling.


Here is the website:

And, check this out:


And no, I am not affiliated--just a happy user!

Steve Kay

 


Ed Hawkins
 


On Mar 20, 2016, at 2:31 PM, tgregmrtn@... [STMFC] <STMFC@...> wrote:

I am not an avid Santa Fe modeler but I do more than just dabble in it. I think I have a very good eye for color. I have used Tru-Color Paints on my most recent Santa Fe freight car and #19 you have pointed out here is a very poor representation of that color. Now saying that is nothing more than conjecture and I should have some basis for my statement and the correction to the TCP color, which as to mix it 50/50 with B&M Maroon.
 
TCP is not a good option in my most humble opinion to anything but current BNSF Brown. 

Greg and others interested in this topic,
FWIW, TCP #19 is a near-perfect match to actual ACF prototype “Mineral Brown” paint samples for a number of new ATSF freight cars built from 1931 to 1944, several MP box and stock cars built 1936-1942, and a few others. This rather dark brown color does not take into account any “scale effect” color correction that may be perceived as required for models.

From observations using the ACF paint samples, the #19 dark brown color ceased to be used on new freight car circa 1944 in favor of more red in the mix (i.e., red-brown) as well as more sheen typically found in paint samples of the postwar period into the 1950s. Thus, ATSF Mineral Brown shades used through World War II versus the postwar years were substantially different in hue as can be verified by comparing ACF paint samples.

The paint samples are available for viewing at the St. Louis Mercantile Library in the collection of ACF bills of materials. 
Regards,
Ed Hawkins


Tony Thompson
 

Greg Martin wrote:

TCP is not a good option in my most humble opinion to anything but current BNSF Brown. 

         We all naturally have our own opinions about paint colors, and I don't argue with that. But this kind of blanket remark about TCP is just silly, as well as wrong. I know of a whole bunch of SP colors which TCP have faithfully matched to SP paint drift panels, and gotten them SPOT ON. Modelers of other roads say the same about many of the TCP paints. Greg may not like one color, his call of course, but please, let's not generalize like this.

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






Donald B. Valentine
 

    A few of us in New England have been using the Pantone Matching System for several
years and have reached about the same conclusion Scott has. Things must still be
tempered by the choice of lighting for one's model pike, however. But I agree that some of 
us, while trying to be accurate in all respects, may go off the deep end on an issue that
is too subjective to really find choices that everyone will agree on. To each their own and
let it go at that.

Cordially, Don Valentine


Jon Miller
 

On 3/20/2016 12:31 PM, tgregmrtn@... [STMFC] wrote:
Don't hold back, open that bottle of ATSF Mineral Brown from Floquil,

    Normally I would do that but this bottle is the famous "REV  1".  Put normal disaul in it and it turned to jello.  I think it could be thinned with MEK (grin).

-- 
Jon Miller
For me time stopped in 1941
Digitrax  Chief/Zephyr systems, JMRI User
NMRA Life member #2623
Member SFRH&MS