Author Topic: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique  (Read 1230 times)

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robertjohndavis

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Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« on: February 11, 2021, 02:51:47 PM »
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Hi -

I am about to do my first weathering of N scale UNITRACK. I have most of my methodology figured out (with the expectation some things will fail).

What I am stuck on is painting the rails. So many layouts I see online have orange/fresh rust color rails. Even if that is an exact color match to a real rail, in miniature form it often looks VERY bright, so much so that it draws away from the scene.

I am leaning more towards a very, very dark blackish-brown. Something like #1e140a (see attachment).

What are your favorite colors?

Are you a brush or a paint pen fan?

Time is not a constraint for me, so I don't need the fastest solution but I do want the one with the best outcome.

All opinions welcome, and thanks!

Rob

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JeffB

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2021, 03:16:52 PM »
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Hi -

I am about to do my first weathering of N scale UNITRACK. I have most of my methodology figured out (with the expectation some things will fail).

What I am stuck on is painting the rails. So many layouts I see online have orange/fresh rust color rails. Even if that is an exact color match to a real rail, in miniature form it often looks VERY bright, so much so that it draws away from the scene.

I am leaning more towards a very, very dark blackish-brown. Something like #1e140a (see attachment).

What are your favorite colors?

Are you a brush or a paint pen fan?

Time is not a constraint for me, so I don't need the fastest solution but I do want the one with the best outcome.

All opinions welcome, and thanks!

Rob

(Attachment Link)

Floquil "Rail Brown" is my go to...  I was able to score two more bottles of it through an Estate Sale table at a train show, so I have plenty.  I like the aged rust look of it on the rails (but just the rails). 

Micro Mark's own (made for them by Vallejo) acrylic "Rail Brown" is pretty close.  If you spray your rail/ties with an enamel paint first, then it's probably going to be fine brush painted over the enamel.  Acrylics on metal a generally OK if the metal is clean prior to application and you don't handle what you've painted at all.  So on rail, it'll probably be OK.

JB


dem34

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2021, 03:25:44 PM »
+1
I've had a lot of luck over the last year using Model Master Burnt Sienna. Which of course like Floquil is now unavailable. But I think Vallejo and Tamiya have the same color with a different name. The color is dark enough to represent older rust, but has the hint of orange suggesting that its a rust color and not just a matte black or brown. In technique, I do the rails first with a fine, ish, brush. Then the ties are all done with a small flat brush. One layer of a uniform semi thin Burnt umber craft paint, with variations made from a Taupe and khaki craft paint with some ties getting the colors straight with some receiving random varieties of the 3 colors mixed. End result will look a little exaggerated but I use Az Rock Ballast and that leaves its own dust on the ties which acts like a free pigment that unifies everything once glued down.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2021, 03:34:37 PM by dem34 »
-Al

MVW

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2021, 05:54:03 PM »
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Model Master "Light Earth" has been my go-to.

Jim

Dave V

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2021, 06:46:59 PM »
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Being a modeler of narrow gauge (HOn3 Rio Grande Southern) and turn-of-the-century (N scale Colorado Midland) my trackwork is mostly untreated ties.  For that I start with a base of Rust-Oleum Weathered Wood roof spray paint...it's the perfect brownish-gray for silvered wood.



The bridge and track was painted with this.

After everything's ballasted I go back with micro brushes and paint each individual tie with varying shades of tan and gray.



Here's the same technique in HOn3 instead of N:

« Last Edit: February 11, 2021, 06:57:02 PM by Dave V »

robertjohndavis

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2021, 08:37:42 PM »
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Thank you, gents. Some great ideas here. I appreciate you taking the time to share. - Rob

LIRR

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #6 on: February 19, 2021, 07:38:03 PM »
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Sprayed track a very dark, flat brown. Painted ties individually with various shades of grey, browns, tans,....time consuming but I think result is worth it. Used weathering powders on the rails....randomly brushing on dark rust, light earth, dark earth.


perezbill

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2021, 04:43:30 PM »
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A lot of videos I have watched lately on this subject have people using Rustoleum's Camo Brown color for the base color. They will then go back and put in some weathered ties using a few different methods such as other paints, chalks, weathering powers...etc.

Ed Kapuscinski

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2021, 11:42:52 AM »
+2
Sprayed track a very dark, flat brown. Painted ties individually with various shades of grey, browns, tans,....time consuming but I think result is worth it. Used weathering powders on the rails....randomly brushing on dark rust, light earth, dark earth.



Yeah, do what he did. That's beautiful.

nuno81291

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Re: Your Favorite Rail Painting Coloring and Technique
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2021, 12:27:15 PM »
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+1 on the rustoleum camo brown spray bomb followed up with dry rushed acrylics for tie weathering, pan pastel on the rail web. I actually did a section I reworked by spraying acrylic Vallejo dark brown with my air brush to avoid the nasty smell of the rustoleum, hard to spot that section of track once weathered.
Guilford Rail System in the 80s/90s