Model Trains & Railroads Tips

Model trains tips, tricks and secrets
Saturday, June 8th, 2013

I saw some tutorials on how to spray paint a model car but was wondering if you do the same thing to a model train. Any tips?

The same rules would apply. I use an airbrush most of the time, the paint goes on a lot smoother and thinner and does not hide the details. Spray can are ok, but are more likely to go on too thick, create orange peel, hide details etc. Keep in mind that to do a really good paint job on a model train car you want to go for a flat finish. Weathering and finishing with a dull coat is probably something the model car tutorial didn’t cover but you might want to consider. There should be some model railroad specific tutorials on line.Good luck and hope this helps.

Start out with a good primer, like Tamiya grey primer(best there is). Make sure you clean parts with rubbing alcohol first to get finger oils off, this could mar the finish. Spray your color on, two lighter coats would be better than one heavy. If you’re going to put decals on it, then gloss would be best. Decals need a gloss surface to adhere to properly. After decals, seal with a clear gloss(I use Future floor polish, which is 100% clear acrylic), Then you can weather the car as you want and/or dull coat. Testors Dullcote in light, misty coats works great. A matte finish looks more “real”

An airbrush would be the best bet, but if you don’t have one, spray cans and brushes can still do the trick. If you’re not sure about whats coming out of a rattle can, try spraying a scrap piece of plastic or cardboard first before moving to your train car.

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