Basic Weathering Techniques
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Basic Weathering Techniques

Basic Weathering Techniques

Basic Weathering Techniques
by David Van Wagoner

CB&W member, David Van Wagoner, talks about some simple techniques that can be used to provide basic weathering to your locomotives and rollings stock.  He provides a listing of the tools required and outlines some methods to easily weathering your equipment.  You can download Dave’s complete presentation and the end of the story.


  • Make engines and rolling stock more lifelike
  • Make it simple – the basic starting point
  • Easy to learn
  • Easy to add variations


Tamiya’s NATO Black – great base color for tinting (heavily used, steam engines have a slightly gray look)
(Alternative: Testor’s Dullcoat)

  1. Mask over lights, etc.
  2. Lightly spray entire engine and tender
  3. You can lightly spray over wheels and rods with no ill effects

Model Master’s Camouflage Gray – looks like dust
(Great for dry brushing to highlight details)

  1. Lightly spray above the trucks and ends on the tender to show dust build-up
  2. Spray the engine’s firebox to simulate discoloration due to heat

IMPORTANT: The paint is typically thinned out a bit – 80% thinner/20% paint

What is Dry Brushing? How I do it.

  • Paint is used directly out of the bottle with no thinning
  • Swipe the paintbrush on a paper towel until nearly all of the paint has been removed.
  • Very lightly using a wide brush, drag over the surface.  You can use a plastic scrap piece to test first




Weathering Pastel Chalks

  • I prefer Bradgon products and use multiple colors
  • Dark Brown
  • Light Brown, (earth)
  • Dark Rust
  • Apply as you see fit.  What makes sense.

Remember, a little goes a long way

For Rolling Stock

Dullcoat the car to eliminate the toy-like sheen and provide a suitable surface for the pastel to adhere to.  Then apply pastels as desired.

NOTE: No need to overspray model with Dullcote when using Bragdon products, since it contains adhesive.

The Final Results

Note the increase dusty look near the trucks.  Dry brushing highlights the details.