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MrKLUKE

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« on: January 05, 2007, 10:32:48 PM »
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« Last Edit: August 05, 2016, 12:57:36 AM by MrKLUKE »

Chris333

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2007, 06:03:36 AM »
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I have some Z scale decals made with an ALPs that are way better than some Microscale decals. I had no problems setting them.


wm3798

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2007, 10:25:55 AM »
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If I sent a list of car numbers to one of you ALPs guys, could I get you to make a sheet of end numbers for my hopper fleet?  I've renumbered most of them on the sides, but don't have the will (or the eyes or fingers) to hand-set individual numbers that are half a millimeter tall...

I need white numerals, plus end markings for my Laurel Valley cars.  About 60 cars, IIRC.
I'll also need some black ones for my stone hoppers.  Can somebody help me? :'(

Lee
Rockin' It Old School

Lee Weldon www.wmrywesternlines.net

bsoplinger

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #3 on: January 07, 2007, 08:25:53 PM »
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I and quite a few other folks that have ALPS printers get out decal paper from Tango Papa who specializes in out of print model rocket decals. The film is at least as thin as what you'd find on a decal from Microscale, personally I think its thinner. It responds well to Micro Sol and Micro Set, I've never used Solvaset or any of the stronger setting solutions on them.

The biggest difference between decals made on an ALPS or similar, done either by the hobbyist or the small company and a custom run silk screen printed decal like from Microscale is that the decal backing, the 'clear' part of the decal is the entire sheet. Using your ATSF logo as an example, if Microscale were to make it, you'd have the circle with a slightly larger clear circle under it. When you cut it out you wouldn't need to be careful or cut around the circle, yet when you wet the decal and it came off the paper you'd just have the circle ATSF herald. If it was done on an ALPS or inkjet, you'd have the ATSF circular herald on a large square of clear decal. Now you could carefully cut out around the circle, it is an easy shape to follow and remove most of that clear extra. It wouldn't be as easy on a logo that was irregularly shaped, like a US map for example.

The ALPS printer produces very sharp readable type down to about 1 pt. That's because its a transfer printer, using ribbons of a waxy substance that is melted and deposited on the surface of the paper. Inkjet decals aren't as sharp. The ALPS has a very limited pallet of colors that work, but it can print white, something the inkjet can't do (but depending on what is wanted, can be worked around with white instead of clear decal paper). The inkjet, especially the photo style ones can produce a whole range of colors.

I'm very happy with the results I've gotten with my ALPS printed decals, and those I've done on my inkjet, but I'd never try to make 1pt dimi data with my inkjet.

MrKLUKE

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« Reply #4 on: January 07, 2007, 09:51:36 PM »
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« Last Edit: August 05, 2016, 12:58:30 AM by MrKLUKE »

The Donkey

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2007, 11:51:05 PM »
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I've been wondering about custom decals too for quite awhile-thanks from me also for
the info.

bsoplinger, do you think Solvaset is stronger than Microsol? So far I've found the
opposite to be true, at least with my experience. In my younger days I was a Solvaset
nut, but it seems now Microsol has more to it IMO. (maybe I'm becoming biased a bit,
since I'm finding it's an excellent vehicle for stripping, weathering, etc.)

To anyone that may know- This is kinda sorta on the topic, & since there's
some more "faces" here, I wanted some opinion-I've been on a search for this type
font in a decal alphabet set. Does anyone know what the font of the "7,3, & 8" on
this car is called?
http://donkey.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=421166
I haven't found an alphabet set yet, & the only set that has it to my knowledge
is the Finger Lakes boxcar set put out by Highball Graphics. (maybe I should
ask them too LOL)  It just seems to me it's becoming much more prevalent,
especially with re-numbered, different owner cars.
Mitch
They're not "Crown Victorias"-they're known
as "Police Interceptors"

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Ed Kapuscinski

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2007, 12:13:56 AM »
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If you ever need to figure out a font from a photo, there's a GREAT site setup to do just that called "What the font": www.whatthefont.com

amato1969

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2007, 11:01:16 AM »
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do you think Solvaset is stronger than Microsol? So far I've found the
opposite to be true, at least with my experience. In my younger days I was a Solvaset
nut, but it seems now Microsol has more to it IMO.

Donkey

In my experience, both trains and 1/72 aircraft, Solvaset is much stronger than MicroSol.  I use Solvaset only for "stubborn" areas where the decal won't settle down with MicroSol.  I have found that too much Solvaset will distort some decals.

  Frank

Catt

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2007, 06:34:49 PM »
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Quote
If I sent a list of car numbers to one of you ALPs guys, could I get you to make a sheet of end numbers for my hopper fleet?  I've renumbered most of them on the sides, but don't have the will (or the eyes or fingers) to hand-set individual numbers that are half a millimeter tall...

I'm with Lee on this quest I could use the same thing for my fleets of (need some for NARA lease cars too) cars.Could also use the reporting marks for the sides of the cars too. Any offers?
Johnathan (Catt) Edwards
Sole owner of the
Grande Valley Railway
100% Michigan made

MrKLUKE

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« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2007, 10:26:52 PM »
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« Last Edit: August 05, 2016, 12:59:42 AM by MrKLUKE »

bsoplinger

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2007, 10:17:30 AM »
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I find Solvaset much stronger than MicroSol. It was designed with Champ and Walthers decals in mind (after all its made by Walthers). If you've ever used them you'd know what I mean, they have an extremely thick backing (especially some of the Champ ones), compared to a Microscale decal or those offered by most of the smaller decal houses like MG (oddballs) or the old Northeast, etc.

I've only used Solvaset on things like wood sides reefers, to get a better snug down onto the boards than that offered by MicroSol. Otherwise I find it too strong for my ALPS printed decals, the backing really is rather thin, which is good in general although it does allow longer things like striping to want to curl up, much moreso than a Microscale decal.

As far as doing custom decals, I'd be willing to do simple things for folks as time and my health permits, but I've found that often what someone thinks would be an easy simple thing isn't.

End reporting marks or new car numbers are simple, but when artwork is involved it can quickly get into a much bigger project. Even just making a full car set of decals from a picture or scan can be a multi hour job. I made decals for the Lehigh Valley 65' mill gon, from scans made by Ray Stillwell (he posts here and on the A forum frequently). I had all the fonts I needed in hand, so the time was just in laying out a sheet and getting the right text in place and making a small Bethlehem Steel logo for the car builder logo in the gon. 3 hours later I had the sheet made, only to find out when I went to apply them that the ribs on the Con-Cor gon that I spliced were much larger than scale, so the lettering which was exactly to scale had to be squeezed together to fit between the ribs. IMHO, Rhystone's method of splicing 2 of the old Con-Cor gons to make these older style 65' mill gons works out very nicely.

Just an example of a 'simple' job that ended up taking quite a bit of time and requiring adjustment even after everything seemed correct. Now imagine if someone had asked me to make those decals and I gave them a bill for 4 hours of my time in addition to the straight printing costs  :-[ Bet they'd have been surprised.

That's why I like doing cars I'd be interested in, like that gon, I'll take all the time I need to get them right for myself and the person who provided the scans gets a free set of decals. That way things work out well all around.

The Donkey

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Re: A few questions about CUSTOM DECALS
« Reply #11 on: January 12, 2007, 12:58:21 AM »
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Ed, thanks for that site-although I haven't tried it yet-it appears to be just what I needed!

Frank & Bsoplinger-I'll go with what you both said-like I said, I used Solvaset almost
exclusively in the late 70's early 80's, & somehow got onto Microsol this
time around (I think it was because the LHS was out of Solvaset) anyways, it could've
been my imagination that it was stronger. (with this new info, I may be using Solvaset
to snug down my RBOX decals over the ribs a little better!)

Sorry I haven't gotten back to you guys-been a goofy week.
Mitch
They're not "Crown Victorias"-they're known
as "Police Interceptors"

http://ddd.shywolfsbeads.com/index.html
http://donkey.rrpicturearchives.net