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Peter's Model Railroading | Articles | Locomotives | PRR RS-1
Construction: Painting


I could now focus on preparing the engine's body for the paint shop. Prior to priming the model's parts, I covered the interior of the cab with tape (since I had already painted the cab's interior).

I disassembled the trucks. I had washed the various parts as best I could and had let them dry overnight.

I primed the model's parts with Floquil "Primer". After two days of curing, I brought them out for this photo. This was moments before the painting session was to commence.

I researched which paint to use for this engine. I was going to use the recommendation put forth by the people on the "PRR-Modeling" Yahoo Group which was to take one small Testors "Black" bottle and fill it up to the top with Floquil "Brunswick Green", because the claim was that Floquil's "Brunswick Green" was too green for PRR standards. Having bought those items and having every intention to follow the instructions, I tested just Floquil "Brunswick Green" by itself and I found it to be quite dark. It was definitely darker than the S-Helper Service's NW2 engine (my only other modeling reference). I feared that if I used Testor's "Black" that the model would basically come out black. My final decision, and what is shown in the photo, was to just use Floquil "Brunswick Green" straight, thinned about 40% with thinner, and airbrush with that. The model in the photo is actually a bit lighter than what it is in person under my layout's lighting. This photo only shows the model with the paint coat applied. No gloss or dull coat have been applied yet. The reason why I brought it out was to apply some hand painting to the model before I apply the gloss coat (which is in preparation for applying the decals). The cab roof was painted the same way. The underside of the North Yard chassis and the truck sideframes were painted with Floquil's "Grimy Black" to simulate road use of the engine.

While the paint was curing on the engine body, I hand-painted the sides of the wheels. These are actually quite hidden by the truck sideframes, but I had them out, so I thought that I might as well paint them. The close-up photo shows the end result. I first hand-painted the wheels' faces with Floquil "Rail Brown". After that dried for an hour or so, I came back and brushed a red rust Bragdon Enterprises' weathering powder over the wheels' faces using a circular motion. The paint provided the grip needed to have the powder stick. I had never used this combination before, but, to my eye at least, it looks like a rusted wheel face.

This is a quick photo of the engine's body, which had the headlight cavity painted with Polly Scale "Stainless Steel", the tops of the fuel caps painted with Polly Scale "Signal Red", and the whole body sprayed with Testors Glosscote. The model is now ready for the decals. Even though the cab roof doesn't get any decals, I also sprayed it with the Glosscote to make sure the two parts looked alike. I did not spray the underbody parts with Glosscote.

I let the Glosscote cure well over two days (mostly a scheduling issue). I have been letting each spray coat cure for at least two days to be absolutely sure it is all ready for the next step. The decals I used are Microscale's "64-45 Pennsy Single Stripe Diesels" set. It provided the road name, the number board numbers, the road numbers, and the end numbers. It didn't provide the smaller print decals, such as "Danger 600 volt" and "Fuel". I decided to forego these on this project. This decal set is not specifically for the RS-1 (rather it is for F-units, E-units, and GG-1), however, the font and numbers all matched the prototype photos. Since I decided to model road number "5627", I had to kind of hunt and peck for the road numbers. The best I could do was a couple of "56" and "27" decals next to each other, but several of the smaller number board decals had to be assemble using one number decal at a time. This is extremely stressful work when applying the decals. I don't see how people in the smaller scales do it!

Please excuse the next, blurry picture; I didn't realize I had made that mistake until I started to process the photo for this web article. It is the only one I have of the process of applying the decals. I took the photo of the finished brakeman side so that I could bring it up on the computer should I need it when I did the other side. However, you get the idea: two number board road number decals, the main road number decal on the cab, and the large road name decal on the long hood. The decals are not perfectly applied (lack of experience on my part), but overall I am happy with it. I do like the Microscale decals (was my first time working with them).

Here's the model after the decals have been applied and sprayed with Testors Dullcote.