Custom Painted F7 and Caboose
This was the first custom painted project I ever did and to say it was a learning experience would be severely toning it down. This is where I first learned about air brushing, drilling holes for railings and grab irons, and learning how to use decals. I also experimented with simulating rust on the trucks and wheels of the caboose.
I started out with an old F7 Chessie System locomotive and an old Santa Fe caboose. Neither of which I would be too upset about losing if things went south.
First I air brushed them both New Jersey Transit silver.
Next I masked off all of the areas I wanted to remain silver.
Then I sprayed the remaining exposed area with flat black enamel paint.
Once it was dry to the touch I removed the masking tape and was shocked that I didn't remove any of the silver paint and how crisp the line appeared to the naked eye.
Next I turned my attention to detailing the locomotive. I bought some F7 detail parts made by BLMA. I didn't have anything I could use for a handrail so I used a piece of wire. It looked ok, but not great. It's a little too thick, and the sharp curves make it look a little warped. First I drilled holes and test fitted the wire.
Then I cut out all of the pieces I needed, held them between 2 pieces of tape, and airbrushed them orange.
Once the railings dried I fit them into the holes I drilled and glued them in place.
Applying the Decals
I got decals from Microscale and used Micro Sol and Micro Set to secure them in place.
**Note: For best results you should put down a coat of gloss or high gloss paint. You can then use matte clear paint later to dull down the finish. I did not do that for this and got lucky.
The picture on the left shows the decal after I floated it in place using the Micro Set and used a paper towel to soak up the excess. The top picture on the right shows the decal on the other side after I applied some Micro Sol. Micro Sol is necessary to help soften the decal further so it can flow down around the rivets.
Once it dried I sprayed it with Testors Dull Cote spray paint to seal in the decal and provide a nice matt finish. I also installed the grab irons and painted the foot steps orange. Here are some pictures of the finished locomotive.
With the locomotive finished I turned my attention to the caboose which already has its paint done.
First I painted the steps and railings and steps orange.
Next I hand painted the stripes onto the side of the caboose. I also painted the molded on hand railing. I would have used a decal except they don't make any that would have fit.
While that was drying I used my air brush and sprayed the wheels and trucks with a rust colored paint.
All that was left was to let it dry and put it together. Here are some pictures of the finished caboose.