October 04, 2011

"Rant of the Week: Weathering!"

Weathering is a very, very personal thing. What works for one person will not work for someone else. However, there are some bits of weathering which look more real than other bits of weathering.

I am not a weathering expert. I'm also not very good at it! Take this, one of my early attempts at weathering.

Horrendous, isn't it? Far too orangey for a working locomotive. However good I thought it was at the time, it certainly isn't that great now - in fact it's rubbish.

So a few years down the line, I did some modifications to this model and took the opportunity to wipe off most of the grime and do it all over again, culminating in this:

It's still not brilliant, but at least it looks more realistic than it did last time around!

I've always preferred using weathering powders to using paints and airbrushes, however the work of one particular chap on RMweb has caught my eye: for it looks very good. He's just finished working on a Thompson L1, and the results are absolutely excellent.

So, have I had a go with my airbrush yet? Not yet...! The fear of failure is outweighing the clear advantages of airbrush weathering.

However, I've done a little weathering in the past week on my Hornby 4VEP. See what you make of it:

I've even painted the black peak to the cab which Hornby had put onto the unit. The weathering has been done entirely with Tamiya weathering powders, with the gunmetal, brown dirt and rust powders all playing their part in making the bogies, chassis, and cab front look a little more work weary.

You'll notice that the orange cantrail stripe has to be repainted red - a job I finished doing yesterday. The roof vents are going to be replaced - as will the cab piping. I haven't yet figured out what to do about the corridor connection or the door yet, but weathering seems to mask most of the "wrongness" of the moulding.

Overall, I've still a long way to go in my weathering efforts, but whatever you may make of my progress (or lack of it!) over the years, it's still been a highly enjoyable and rewarding experience.

Until next time, where I will have a few updates on some outstanding projects I have been working on for some years - including one in particular!

Unless today's announcement at the National Railway Museum, regarding their new 00 commissioned model, renders it redundant!

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