7mm US model dabblings

Discussion in 'Area 51' started by Jordan, 8 April 2013.

  1. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Jim, there are several places that match paints if you know the code, the only issue I think would be the conversion from US paint codes to UK paint codes, the colours I'd like are in the BS381 series, but there are many other series, including RAL, I'll have to cross reference them all and see which one comes up best. But at the moment I have BS381 104 Azure Blue (tested ok) and BS381 356 Golden Yellow (not tested yet).

    The problem is neither of these are an exact match to Floquil colours which are supposed to be the accurate orignal colours. Both of these I have as an RGB colour not a RAL or BS colour, I should of explained in detail earlier in that I don't think automotive paint shops can match colours from RGB values.

    Regarding solvent based paints, I usually blow over a thin primer coat first, they tend to be plastic safe and give a good base for the top coat, in fact Halfords do a specific plastic bumper/fender primer as a base coat for their cellulose top coats.

    Richard, I've used Doncaster Autos in the past (Warrens tip off) and the service is great and the cans spray really well, I'm just about to ring them and see if they can match colours to a RGB code as opposed to a BS381 code.

    But, if you've had success with someone else, then by all means post them up here, I'm open to all sources of paint suppliers, especially if you've had good service from them.
  2. Jordan

    Jordan Mid-Western Thunderer

    The small matter of the French Eurotunnel "workers" being on strike again (bless 'em) was nothing to do with it, of course.... ;)
    If rail is viable in the UK companies will use it; witness how busy the Daventry DIRFT & nearby Tesco/Malcolm sidings are, but only for bulk/long distance moves.
    Rail freight in the UK is hampered by many factors, ranging from the Beeching legacy, through a tiny loading gauge, to an overcrowded, passenger-dominated rail network, & much more besides. It's never going to be like the USA.....
    .... which is why - desperately trying to get back ON Topic - some of us prefer to model US outline. ;)
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  3. TheSnapper

    TheSnapper Western Thunderer

    Just a small point - the problem was caused by the FERRY workers being on strike, and all the traffic diverting to Eurotunnel....

    Jordan likes this.
  4. richard carr

    richard carr Western Thunderer


    We used a place in wimbledon to get cellulose paint made to order, I will dig out the details.
    My preference is to get a half litre of paint rather than cans. I then spray this with a small spray gun diluted 4 parts thinners to 1 paint. It works really well and is miles cheaper in the long run. Cellulose dosen't go off like enamels, it will last for years even after being opened and resealed.

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  5. Jordan

    Jordan Mid-Western Thunderer

    :oops: my mistake. Still French, of course, & I believe bonfires were involved, as is traditional.... ;)
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  6. adrian

    adrian Flying Squad

    After much prodding from Warren I'm trying cellulose although I've used Express Paints, http://www.express-paints.co.uk/mixed-cellulose-colour/ because I could order it in 100ml bottles. Half a litre seems a lot paint for 2mm! I submitted the online form with a list of RAL and BS codes and the delivery was very prompt. I have seen mention that the smaller bottles can have a wider variation in colour because of the small quantities used but I don't think this will be a problem - maybe even more authentic!!
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  7. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Richard, I picked up a SPROG yesterday from Sudbury, reasonably priced as well, also some printable decal paper so that'll be on going in the back ground as well. Next on the agenda is airbrush and compressor research and purchase :thumbs:. Once I get an airbrush set up I can tweak the colours to make more faded versions in due course.

    I've also just ordered three cans from Doncaster autopaints, a blue and two shades of a darker yellow, after much web browsing it looks like no one really knows the exact colour of the YN3 nose yellow, which is actually classed as gold by CSX it would appear. Once I'm happy with the final colour I then need to match it to the decal sheet I'm doing. It isn't so important to get the exact yellow but it's more important that the logo and road numbers match the colour.
  8. richard carr

    richard carr Western Thunderer

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  9. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Cheers, sites bookmarked :thumbs:
  10. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Ever onward, the new cans arrived today, so straight out after work for a quick colour test.

    The lighter yellow wasn't much better than all the others to be honest, but sprays just lovely, the colour is a good match for a fresh YN2 colour scheme.

    The second can was much darker, I had thought I might even have to go for a richer colour but opted for this one and to my eyes, looks pretty spot on for the YN3 paint scheme, a much deeper richer yellow/gold colour.

    Rubbish point and shoot images, struggling with the light and auto white balancing.....pretty badly!



    If anything it's now a little too rich but only a smidge, it'll weather down nicely I think.

    The third can was the same blue as decided on before, it appears that it's the same blue for YN2 and YN3, but can fade terribly in the YN2 scheme.

    For the record so far.

    YN2 scheme
    RAL 5000 Blue factory fresh, faded to test later.
    RAL 7004 Grey, I've not tested this yet but will once the AC60CW starts to come together.
    RAL 1003 Yellow factory fresh or Rover Inca Yellow for in service and Fiat Broom Yellow for faded.

    YN3 scheme
    RAL 5000 Blue factory fresh.
    RAL 1007 Yellow Factory fresh and you could probably get away with RAL 1003 as faded

    Both YN3 colours seem to hold their tone rather well in service but as previously discussed, the blue changes dramatically depending on the climatic environment it's viewed in.

    RAL 1007 is also the closest I've found to factory fresh Union Pacific but it'd need a bit more yellow for casual wear and I'd probably use Rover Inca Yellow for a faded unit.

  11. Pugsley

    Pugsley Western Thunderer

    Have you thought of trying BR Blue (or one of the car colour equivalents) for the YN3 scheme?
  12. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    I had, but haven't explored it any further at the moment.

    Addendum, a quick check shows BS381C 108 as BR blue


    Cross referencing the RGB with RAL comes up with RAL 5000, having said that, so does BS381C 104

    All three seem very close in their RGB values.
    Last edited: 1 July 2015
  13. Big Train James

    Big Train James Western Thunderer

    It had been mentioned earlier in the thread about the dearth of O scale CSX decals, and in particular for the Yn3 scheme. Microscale does make a Yn3 decal set, and even at one time made it in O scale.

    Microscale 48-744

    Of course Microscale has long since stopped producing O scale decals. I took a look around the web and in particular the two hobby shops I might expect to have O scale decals in stock. I could only find the Microscale Yn2 scheme decals. So this post is only slightly useful in that one could keep an eye on ebay and so on to try and score a set of the Yn3 scheme. Only relevant if you weren't yet aware of this set.


    Edit: Oh by the way, you could always commission Microscale for a run of the O scale decals. They clearly have the artwork. All you need to do is find a willing group to take the rest of the 250 minimum run that you don't need off your hands.:oops:
  14. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer


    Yes YN3 scheme is very hard to come by, as are many other O scale decals it would seem, I have just managed to get a YN2 set off Ebay so it will be good to compare the blue they have used with the colour I've finally arrived at, hopefully they should be pretty close.

    I've also got some blank decal paper and now that I have a RGB for the nose will work up some YN3, YN2b and boxcar artwork and simply print my own, they may not be perfect but if the colours are right/close and the artwork sized correctly, I can send the master file off to a professional decal printer and have a few sheets run off.

    I've tried some quick tests at work on our laser printer and the trick seems to be not to draw at 1:1 size, this doesn't give a nice smooth line when printed, it appears to be better when drawing at 4x scale and then letting the printer compress to suit an A4 sheet, the printer appears better at compressing and making better lines than a 1:1 print, lot of water to pass under that bridge as yet.

    CSX use Lubalin Graph Bold but with slightly modified serifs, you can get Lubalin Graph Bold for free off the web and it's not hard in PSP to start to edit the serifs and fatten up the boarder around the YN2b scheme. Of course the final article will be on a white back ground which prints as clear, the current ones are simply there to give me a colour reference. I'll also add all the little warning decals that CSX plaster over their locos, hopefully letting the printer do the compressing will still make them virtually legible.


    Bit rough and ready but for trials of colour, line thickness and spacing etc it'll do, the YN2b X has its border thickened but might need another pass and the serfis on all the letters need looking at.
    Last edited: 1 July 2015
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  15. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Little bit of an update, managed to find some time for some colour test prints.

    Logo sizing and colour

    Height is correct at 40", length, best guess from comparing real photos and position on doors, hinges, latches etc. The blue colours are totally wrong when compared to the spray, so a sample sheet was printed.


    One or two are a close match, being as blue doesn't go on blue you won't ever see direct adjoining colours so close...should be good enough.

    I though I had the yellow down just right as well

    Clearly I do not! Strange thing is, under lighting inside the yellow is spot on and the blue a little dark, I'm not sure how the decal paper is going to react to colours, being a sealed surface I'm hoping it'll have a more consistent and deeper colour depth, clearly normal paper absorbs some of the ink and gives it a slight blotchy look or washed out look.
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  16. Pugsley

    Pugsley Western Thunderer

    Are you using an inkjet, or a laser printer? A laser printer should be more consistent across normal and the decal paper, as it doesn't get absorbed by either.
  17. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Laser, but as you can see on the blue, it isn't a consistent colour and has little waves or blotches in it, but then the decals are going to be considerably smaller and the effect less noticeable...I hope :cool:
  18. Pugsley

    Pugsley Western Thunderer

    I'm surprised by that, laser is usually very consistent, although I must admit I don't think I've ever printed a single colour area quite that large before.
  19. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    The yellow is much more consistent and there's a whole range of print options to choose from which might increase the colour density so it might not all be bad news, it could just be the paper which is typical office bare bones minimum grade, I have some spare photographic high gloss paper I could perhaps test it on and see if that makes a difference.

    To be fair, the CSX logo is the largest decal on any of their locos which is significantly smaller than half an A4 sheet and the effect much less pronounced.
  20. mickoo

    mickoo Western Thunderer

    Well I thought I'd try some of this 'box opening' lark everyone keeps going on about :cool:


    Not only do you get one big box to open, you get four smaller ones inside....result :)


    Nuff said :thumbs:


    Never had a Weaver across my desk, simply excellent upper works, totally awful running gear, I knew they were three rail and they'd be course scale, but my Pizza cutter is more fine scale than these :eek:


    The bulk head flat also needs new wheels, in fact all my US stock needs new wheels, all seem to be in the region of 17.5mm dia and 45.6mm across pin point axles so I'll have to surf the web for suitable metal replacements, Peartree, Slaters ??. The Weaver ones might be a bit more problematical as they have great big cast steel bogies, I may just drop these out and stuff in some Atlas ones off the 40' box cars I have in the loft, I'm modelling too modern for 40' box cars so they're sat there in fallen flag liveries awaiting a decision, I could flog them on E bay and convert the funds to more modern ones, use the bogies to replace the Weaver ones and put the bodies on the ground as storage units in some industrial scene, or, repaint into a more modern fictional scheme and apply rule #1 and use them as consist fillers or siding fillers.

    There 'was' four of these high cubes but some goit whipped one from under my nose over night....Jordan? So I only ended up with three, and no, I didn't pay list price, it's amazing what a polite phone call and offer of a bulk buy will get you in a price reduction :D

    Still need a few Waffle side (I hesitated at Telford last year and Jordan snaffled up the only decent one waffle side I've ever seen, mind it was graffitied and I'm not a fan of that, prototypical or not) and some centre beam cars and I'm thinking a rotary dumper with some high cube wood chip gondolas to unload might be a nice set scene. Some tank cars might be nice, there's a nice little industry at Taft that has a couple of small (by US standards) tank cars a week, it contains concentrate corn flower syrup which the Americans use extensively in their products, mainly sweets and soft drinks, the little industry basically decants the syrup and dilutes it into a ready liquid for soda drinks, the bottles of dilute going out by road to other industries that add the flavouring and bottling/canning.

    Another nice industry is a small wood unit, imports include wood chip and logs plus the odd tank car with chemicals to clean/treat the wood as well as adhesives, outgoing is box car pallet wood products or big centre beam wagons with sheets of wood. One unit and at least five different types of rail car.

    If the weathers nice at the weekend I'll grab all the stock out and give it a once over and snap a few photos :thumbs: Also hope to flesh a bit more of the layout plan in the near future...but the W1 etches must come first ;)
    Last edited: 8 July 2015
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