Sunday, October 12, 2014

Weathering True Line CN Caboose

True Line CN wood caboose is a nice model out of the box, but a little bit shiny. Feels like a cheap plastic model in term of paint finish. Thus, it needs a little bit of weathering to look decent on any layout.

First, looking at picture of the actual prototype, it became quickly evident most had their steps painted in CN Orange and not black as the model. I decided to rectify this and used True Line paint to touch up the steps. The color match was perfect! I also had to paint in white a few railings.

Model was then dullcoted before applying any weathering effect. This time, I decided to use Citadel Paints washes. They call them "shade". I'm not the kind of guy to buy readymade stuff, but a friend of mine, Charles Bédard, introduced me to these shade earlier this summer when we painted an entire army of Warhammer 40 000 figures. I was particularly impressed how the shade would creeps in all the crannies and nooks without effort. The stuff is a little bit strong and should be applied lightly in several coats.

When weathering, I always like to work from a prototype picture to inspire myself. Caboose CN 79021 - mine is 79026 - shown a very nice weathering pattern that made the wood siding really stand out. The caboose itself isn't in a rotten state, but you can feel it has lots of miles under the wheels. I think it fits well a wood caboose during the mid-80s and nearing its demise.

First step, I used a very light oil paint wash of titanium white and raw sienna all over the model to fade down the color. I found this particular mix is very effective to fade down colors without having to fire up the airbrush. When done and dry, I dullcoted the model again.

I choosed a wash called Agrax Earthshade. It is a dirty brownish dark color that fits vehicles really well. Two coats were needed to get the desired effect. I accelerated the drying time with my trusty hairdrier.

The stack was painted a dirty aluminium color then shaded using Agrax Earthshade. Citadel Null Oil is also a good choice when you want to bring life to metallic color having seen a lot of stress. Splash of black were added at the stacks protuding ends to simulate sooth.

Finally, pastel chalk was used to add dirt along the frame and the steps. I used black pastel. Trucks were painted a warm dark grey and weathered with pastel. Wheels received a brownish coat of paint and rust colored pastel.

I didn't feel I needed to seal the chalk because it always kills the realistic dusty effect of pastel chalk powder. I try to keep things as they are at this point. I'll see under operation if I need to dullcote the model but won't do it until I have stong evidence the weathering is getting away.

The entire project took about an afternoon. I just need to add the marker lamps and the ACI label and I'm in business.

This caboose is gonna see a lot of action before I get my hand on PSC cabooses... We will see if True Line will deliver in time their new stuff.

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