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First attempts at weathering!!!

3276 Views 27 Replies 17 Participants Last post by  shedmad66
Having rounded up what model railway items I feel that I am able to use from my parents' house, I have for sometime been attempting to plan my layout.

When we get around to it (money wise), I plan to use the loft having a layout based on a preserved railway. But in the mean time I am planning a small layout based in the mid 60's at a branch line terminus that will take apart and store under the spare bed (plenty of room, it's a double). My wife says that she can provide the "railway cats" - four of them.

I have found a number of Parkside and Cambrian kits that I have built, but not painted, so I have been thinking about liveries, and then weathering!!! I must have thought about this sometime back as I seem to have bought a load or Railmatch paint.

So this week I have spent some time weathering an old Hornby 110, replacing the speed whiskers with a yellow warning panel, and adding some dirt and rust. Not to sure if I have over done the dirt, but still, it is my first attempt

As I said, I my have over did the dirt!

Granted that the photo's maynot be the best in the world but....

All that is left to do is convert it to DCC and add lights - could be a while off yet

Any comments welcome

Thanks to pedromorgn for his help and advice on how to upload the photo's

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there was an article in a magazine a year or two ago about weathering using makeup which is completely removable or another way of doing semi removable weathering is with weathering powders. I have yet to attempt weathering at the moment i don't have the time to attempt anything but have been reading up about it the general consensus seems to be less is more and to build up the effect a little at a time
Lots of great advice here! I think everyone needs to find their comfort level. For me the airbrush works well with acrylic paint. For weathering I start with a light coat of dark earth to tone down the toylike sheen on most models then overspray with black or soot - this seems to bring out the detail. None of it too heavy. I then play around with powders to get the streaks and so on. Powders don't work too well on bare plastic or gloss.

By the way you can get powdered paint pigment from art stores which is a whole lot cheaper than the weathering powders offered by the model trade.

Airbrushed acrylic paint and powders can be washed off with Windex.

Here's a pic that I think gives an idea:


For me weathering is not about putting dirt on but about cleaning it off. The following 2 pictures I hope show what i mean.

Stage 1 using very thinned paint I apply a wash of sludgy black brown - more towards the black side than the brown. While this is still wet I blend in other colours such as black onto the roof and grills, referring to a photograph. I then leave it to dry for 24 hours.

Then I clean all of it off again using thinners and cotton buds/brushes. This method is dead simple and gives the washed on dirty look I favour over the dusty look some people like. In my opinion the British climate tends towards this effect while dryer climates such as in the US tend toward the dusty look. Plus - no airbrush! Its pretty rare I use an airbrush for weathering these days.

Hope that helps.


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Like your idea Jim s-w, might just have to give it a go, but on the other hand my wife tells me that may be I should all so give the lawn mower a go!!!!!
Something about not being able to see the cats in the garden

Could this be to time to drop a hint about a garden railway
But in the mean time I have had a go at 3 Sharks, 4 Dogfish and 3 Catfish. Now just need time to build the 6 Parkside Grampus kits!! O and cut the grass

But I do like the look of your 47

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Good on you for trying, its a start and with all the helpful advice you have being given I am sure you will perfect it over time. Now you did mention adding lights. Will I have done it and I will say it is very difficult to get directional lights. Easy to drill holes cut slots for LED's but putting it all back together is difficult. Actually it just about drove me up the wall.

You will need to do big mods to the drivers cab to get it all to fit. It is just that their is no clearance under the drivers shell. I used a 0.5mm spot drill and from there drilled it out. 2mm tower red/yellow LED's, I got them from DCC Concepts. It would be far easier just to rip out the drivers shell...something to think about. Last thing dont forget to paint the LED's white then black.

Use a function only decoder for the last car. Makes life much easier and you dont have all that wiring running between the DMU.

If you want some photo's for future reference I can send them.

Link to the finished one on youtube, has a couple of extras.


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Thanks, that given me more insperation. The photos could be useful please.

looking really good there

I havent ventured into weathering yet. i suppose its the thought that i could really screw up a nice loco or wagon.


P.S. please can you keep an eye on the size of your pictures. we have a guideline that the longest side is no longet than 800 pixels.
If you are using photobucket, it can automatically resize them as you are uploading. i use a size of 640x480. We dont mind the odd picture being larger if its something special.
Yeah looking good there. One bit of advice, Perhaps just thin the paints out a bit more so it doesn't look too splodgy
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