Espeefan's Passenger Car Modeling

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Espeefan

Well-Known Member
I decided to move my projects over here so they don't disappear after a month. Feel free to comment, question, or even show me what you're doing. We're here to learn from each other along with everything else, right?

I have another lot in the paint shop! The baggage dorm and coach you've seen over in the Coffee Shop. The other two are a pair of cars I had temporarily forgotten about. Being an SP fan, you've got to have a Daylight right? I mean it was probably their "IT" train using today's slang. I do have one, a nice set of MTH cars that I use to model the 1941 Coast Daylight. Unfortunately, I became fascinated with these trains and wanted to do a little more with them. Turns out there were several Daylights: The Coast Daylight, which everyone has seen. There was also the San Joaquin Daylight, which ran through the Central Valley. Then there's the Shasta Daylight which ran from Oakland to Portland. That train was different from the others. It had large windows for a better view of the spectacular scenery on that route. Maybe I'll tackle that one someday, but it would be a very expensive project as all the cars are more recent brass models! The Sacramento Daylight ran from Oakland to Sacramento, and was a good short train. At it's most popular, it was only five cars. A coffee shop, a chair car, an articulated chair car (counts as two), and a parlor observation. That's very reasonable for a home layout. It was pulled by a Daylight painted Atlantic on the 1940's and wouldn't you know it, I just happened to have one! 😁 Anyhoo, I've been working on a San Joaquin Daylight, and in the era I'm modeling the train, it didn't yet have the triple unit diner/kitchen/coffee shop car. I found a coffee shop/tavern and a lunch counter/tavern on e-Bay from Trainz. These are old Soho cars, so they weren't expensive, not much more and sometimes less than a current Wally passenger car. They are also correct for the train. They'll take a little more work, but it'll be worth it in the end! They are short on detail, but adequate. The underbodies are spartan but since I don't model train wrecks I really don't care about that much. It'll be easy enough to add that sort of detail later if I decide I want to as the floor is held on with six screws. Here they are:

SP Coffee Shop-Tavern cars.jpg


One thing that has to happen is the factory trucks have to go. Not only to they induce vacuum, but the wheelbase isn't right, they're short on detail, and while they don't roll badly there is room for improvement! I decided to replace them with trucks from D & G Models. D&G makes high quality trucks for UP, SP. Santa Fe, NYC, PRR, ACL and Rock Island. They do have a website, but handle orders the old-fashioned way, so I get mine from The Original Whistle Stop out in Pasadena, or as Sheldon Cooper of BBT fame calls it: "The Good Train Store". They get me my orders in two days. The factory truck is on the left, the D&G truck is on the right. Need I say more?


D&G Trucks 1.jpg


They are pretty universal when it comes to mounting. I had to drill out the center mounting hole to fit the existing Soho kingpin. A 1/8" drill bit gave me a perfect slip fit. They are made of engineering plastic, and the springs are functional. If you want to light your car, you'll need to add wipers.

D&G Trucks 2.jpg

The shells will take a trip to the blasting booth as nickel plating doesn't always take paint well. I won't remove it, but I will rough it enough to take paint well. Daylight isn't really hard to paint. It's a three-color scheme, but it's also all straight lines. The painful part is the four stripes that run the length of the car. More to come.
 

Smudge617

Well-Known Member
I decided to move my projects over here so they don't disappear after a month. Feel free to comment, question, or even show me what you're doing. We're here to learn from each other along with everything else, right?

I have another lot in the paint shop! The baggage dorm and coach you've seen over in the Coffee Shop. The other two are a pair of cars I had temporarily forgotten about. Being an SP fan, you've got to have a Daylight right? I mean it was probably their "IT" train using today's slang. I do have one, a nice set of MTH cars that I use to model the 1941 Coast Daylight. Unfortunately, I became fascinated with these trains and wanted to do a little more with them. Turns out there were several Daylights: The Coast Daylight, which everyone has seen. There was also the San Joaquin Daylight, which ran through the Central Valley. Then there's the Shasta Daylight which ran from Oakland to Portland. That train was different from the others. It had large windows for a better view of the spectacular scenery on that route. Maybe I'll tackle that one someday, but it would be a very expensive project as all the cars are more recent brass models! The Sacramento Daylight ran from Oakland to Sacramento, and was a good short train. At it's most popular, it was only five cars. A coffee shop, a chair car, an articulated chair car (counts as two), and a parlor observation. That's very reasonable for a home layout. It was pulled by a Daylight painted Atlantic on the 1940's and wouldn't you know it, I just happened to have one! 😁 Anyhoo, I've been working on a San Joaquin Daylight, and in the era I'm modeling the train, it didn't yet have the triple unit diner/kitchen/coffee shop car. I found a coffee shop/tavern and a lunch counter/tavern on e-Bay from Trainz. These are old Soho cars, so they weren't expensive, not much more and sometimes less than a current Wally passenger car. They are also correct for the train. They'll take a little more work, but it'll be worth it in the end! They are short on detail, but adequate. The underbodies are spartan but since I don't model train wrecks I really don't care about that much. It'll be easy enough to add that sort of detail later if I decide I want to as the floor is held on with six screws. Here they are:

View attachment 178698

One thing that has to happen is the factory trucks have to go. Not only to they induce vacuum, but the wheelbase isn't right, they're short on detail, and while they don't roll badly there is room for improvement! I decided to replace them with trucks from D & G Models. D&G makes high quality trucks for UP, SP. Santa Fe, NYC, PRR, ACL and Rock Island. They do have a website, but handle orders the old-fashioned way, so I get mine from The Original Whistle Stop out in Pasadena, or as Sheldon Cooper of BBT fame calls it: "The Good Train Store". They get me my orders in two days. The factory truck is on the left, the D&G truck is on the right. Need I say more?


View attachment 178699

They are pretty universal when it comes to mounting. I had to drill out the center mounting hole to fit the existing Soho kingpin. A 1/8" drill bit gave me a perfect slip fit. They are made of engineering plastic, and the springs are functional. If you want to light your car, you'll need to add wipers.

View attachment 178700
The shells will take a trip to the blasting booth as nickel plating doesn't always take paint well. I won't remove it, but I will rough it enough to take paint well. Daylight isn't really hard to paint. It's a three-color scheme, but it's also all straight lines. The painful part is the four stripes that run the length of the car. More to come.
I'm going to be watching this closely, as I have a project similar to this that I need to make a start on.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
I can't promise there will be daily posts here, but I'll do my best to keep things moving! :)

I got the car bodies through the blasting booth yesterday. After that, they took a bath in the ultrasonic cleaner. I'm lucky enough to own one that will hold full size HO passenger cars! After the bath, a rinse in the kitchen sink to remove the cleaning solution, then a blow dry. Sounds like a trip to the beauty parlor, doesn't it? I guess it sort of is! They were allowed to sit for a day so any residual water that might be trapped somewhere can dry. This is an important step. Guess how I know. You can speed up this process by baking in a low temp oven, say 185-200 degrees for 1.5-2 hours, but why hurry?

Bodies post blast.jpg


This is what the industry calls a "brush off blast". the object is to remove light contaminants and rough the surface for painting. A slight profile is all you need. You have to be careful with a blaster. There are hobby grade ones like the Paasche Air-Eraser, but I have a professional grade booth and use a full-size gun. I use a minimum 200 grit, either aluminum oxide, or crushed garnet. You can also use walnut shells. I blast at about 80 PSI. The full-size gun makes short work of these. Many don't blast. I didn't for years. I used to soak parts in lacquer thinner and scrub them with an old toothbrush. This will work, as will a hobby blaster. My way isn't necessarily the only way. We've all go to make do with what we have. As a minimum, I'd soak in a solvent. Denatured alcohol works well on plastic. If you use lacquer thinner, do it outside or in closed containers. It's a volatile solvent, not good to breathe or expose your skin to. I have a set of heavy gloves I use when handling it. There are also some decent paint strippers you can get at big box home stores.

The next step will be a coat of light gray primer. The brass cars will be getting UP yellow and Gray for the Overland. The plated cars will be painted Daylight for the San Joaquin Daylight. That train is interesting as it often got different equipment. You might see yellow, two tone gray, or green cars, or heavyweights in the consist. It wasn't always a perfectly matched train set as was the Coast Daylight. That makes it an interesting train to watch!

Yellows and oranges can be difficult to get right when spraying, especially UP Armor Yellow. Even bare brass can tint it off of it's true shade. I recommend priming with a light gray, white, or silver to get a nice accurate yellow.

The coach will be getting an interior. A friend gave me several sets of Walthers interiors from his stash.

Coach interior.jpg


This will get cut up and fit to the brass shell as best as possible. If interiors aren't your thing, you can use tinted clear styrene for the windows, and then make blinds out of thin styrene painted light gray. This hides the empty interiors nicely. I'll be doing that with the baggage dorm.

In case anyone is wondering, I don't paint the car interiors. I did do this once, on a heavyweight diner. Once the car was done I couldn't see it, and I'm a firm believer in omitting detail you can't see, just like Allen McClelland was.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
Here's that heavywight diner I did where I painted the interior partitions and walls. This is why I won't be doing them again. I've also included a view with the Coach Yard diaphragms. Note where the coupler knuckle is. Coach Yard also makes a Kadee compatible draft gear box with slots instead of holes, so you can position the knuckles properly and the diaphragms will touch. The knuckle should be just under the diaphragm, not projecting beyond it. You 18" and 22" minimum radius guys forget you just read this. You won't need to worry about it! My club has a 48" minimum radius so I Like to do these things.

Heavyweight Diner 77-D-7.jpg


77-D-7 with CY Diaphragms.jpg


But, I digress... Back to the current project!
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
I got the car bodies primed last night. I used Scalecoat Flat MOW Gray. It's a great color for priming, and if you're an MOW modeler, it gives an idea what cars like these might look like in MOW service. The SP and many other roads converted passenger equipment of all types into tool cars, crew cars, classroom cars or just about any purpose they might have. There is a prototype for everything. I baked the bodies at 185 degrees for about 90 minutes, then let them sit overnight. I know I told you not to rush, but this is Scalecoat. Baking is part of the deal. Along with speeding the drying process (which is LONG for this paint) it levels it nicely. If you want to air dry them, apply the smell test. When you don't smell solvents anymore, it's dry and ready for the next coat. I know painters who leave several days or even a week between coats with this paint. We've lost Scalecoat, so this won't be a concern for you if you're using something else. Myself, I'm a hoarder (no, really!) and I had stocked up on my most used colors before the owner disappeared, so I'll be shooting it for a while yet! As you can see, it goes on well and when baked levels nicely.

Car bodies.jpg


I also painted the car floors and trucks for the Baggage Dorm and Coach. I cheated and didn't blast them. They took paint well. No primer for these parts. Harbor mist Gray covers nicely and Scalecoat as a rule doesn't need primer, except for the yellows and oranges as discussed before. The other two cars already had black floors, so they are good to go. Now it wouldn't be a good story without a little humor so: I've done several cars with black floors and trucks lately, and I was happily moving along and had both car floors and one truck painted black before I realized they were supposed to be gray. That put a few bucks into the swear jar. It's especially aggravating when you can't blame someone else. fortunately, the paint was still wet, so I just rinsed them off with lacquer thinner, let that evaporate, and painted everything with the correct color. This is a hazard of doing multiple projects. I have some baggage cars on the bench that I'm doing in tandem with this project, and you have to be careful not to get your wires crossed when multi-tasking! The floors and trucks look good.

Car Floors & trucks.jpg


Yes, I painted one set of trucks while still assembled. I know, right? I had no choice. This is a hazard of brass models. These trucks are soldered together. I have run into this before, with those COSF cars I did. Beautifully detailed trucks, all soldered together. I just didn't want to run the risk of unsoldering them, then re-assembling them. You can get into issues with alignment and tram, and some of these trucks are unobtanium, when it comes to replacements so if you crash and burn you are, for lack of a better term, screwed. I've seen some experts do this and get away with it, but their accounts of the process were a little hair raising. No thank you! When this happens I just oil the axle journals with a needle oiler, clean up any excess with some thinner, and paint away. I've never had rolling issues with this technique. I'll clean the paint off the wheel treads of course.

Next step, UP Armor Yellow on the top two cars sides, and Daylight Orange on the bottom two.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
**CORRECTION/CLARIFICATION** Regarding painting interiors: I don't paint the interior car walls. I do paint the chairs, tables, and other fixtures, like the kitchen on that heavyweight diner. It got a coat of Alclad Stainless steel. The diner tables and chairs got painted and tablecloths got added. That stuff you can see.
 
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Sirfoldalot

Days Gone Bye!
Staff member
NICELY DONE!
I trust that you will eventually move/copy your previous photos/models to this site?
I hope so!

BUT ... please do not forget to visit us at the "shop"!
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
NICELY DONE!
I trust that you will eventually move/copy your previous photos/models to this site?
I hope so!

BUT ... please do not forget to visit us at the "shop"!
Oh, I won't be leaving the shop. and I can certainly move things over if you'd like. That may take a while. Oh, and Thank You!
 

Smudge617

Well-Known Member
Oh, I won't be leaving the shop. and I can certainly move things over if you'd like. That may take a while. Oh, and Thank You!
Very interesting so far, although I don't have the paints you use, (but then again I don't have anything brass either.) but I'm keeping up with you.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
Very interesting so far, although I don't have the paints you use, (but then again I don't have anything brass either.) but I'm keeping up with you.
The type of paint doesn't really matter that much. It's just what I have on hand. Solvent based and acrylics have a few differences in how they're handled, but if you have a product you like, the techniques and steps here will work with it. Glad you're watching!

Brass is actually easier to paint than plastic at least for me. Remember that little misstep with the wrong color? With brass, just dip it in the solvent. Plastic would have required a little more involved cleanup method. With plastic you probably wouldn't need to use a blaster, though I have. Some of the old pad printed lettering really hangs on. Once or twice I've used pumice as a blast media for plastic parts. It's gentler and I use it in a Paasche air eraser. Mostly just a chemical strip will do for plastic. Denatured alcohol is best. Brake fluid can attack certain plastics, so I don't chance using it. Scalecoat wash-away used to be great, but again, we've lost it. 😞 Some guys have used Pine Sol. That I've never tried.
 
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Espeefan

Well-Known Member
I've shot the first color and now the fun begins. Masking for the second color. The yellow is good old Floquil. The Daylight Orange is Tru-Color. The next color will be a Scalecoat product for both. After that application the yellow cars will be done as far as paint goes. Except for a clear coat over the yellow before decaling, and again after. I'll have to wait for that one until the wife has finished dinner, as I'll need the oven again.

First Color.jpg


It looks like I missed a spot on the bottom car. That's just a little glare from the Ott Light on my desk.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
A couple of PS's:
1: Don't ever try and bake plastic. Even at low temperature and especially if you're using solvent based paints. Your project may sag into nothingness!
2: Off to the library for photos of the cars so I can get the masking lines right. The Daylight is easy, I've done enough of those to know it by heart, but the yellow cars had variations on where the red stripes went since it was applied to so many different car types. Lucky for me I have the necessary books. The historical society's paint and lettering guides, and their passenger car books are invaluable for this work. If you aren't blessed with a huge library, Railfan.net will probably get you through. Google is your friend!
 

skyliner

Well-Known Member
Being an SP fan, you've got to have a Daylight right? I mean it was probably their "IT" train using today's slang. I do have one, a nice set of MTH cars that I use to model the 1941 Coast Daylight. Unfortunately, I became fascinated with these trains and wanted to do a little more with them. Turns out there were several Daylights: The Coast Daylight, which everyone has seen. There was also the San Joaquin Daylight, which ran through the Central Valley. Then there's the Shasta Daylight which ran from Oakland to Portland. That train was different from the others. It had large windows for a better view of the spectacular scenery on that route. Maybe I'll tackle that one someday, but it would be a very expensive project as all the cars are more recent brass models! The Sacramento Daylight ran from Oakland to Sacramento, and was a good short train. At it's most popular, it was only five cars. A coffee shop, a chair car, an articulated chair car (counts as two), and a parlor observation. That's very reasonable for a home layout. It was pulled by a Daylight painted Atlantic on the 1940's and wouldn't you know it, I just happened to have one! ... [post trimmed]

FWIW, although it didn't carry the Daylight moniker, SP's Sunbeam/Hustler trains between Houston and Dallas were streamlined in 1937 and painted in the same Daylight colors. They weren't as long as their west coast counterparts, looking like mini Daylights, and were pulled by T&NO 4-6-2s also in the same paint scheme.


The_Sunbeam_Southern_Pacific.JPG
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
FWIW, although it didn't carry the Daylight moniker, SP's Sunbeam/Hustler trains between Houston and Dallas were streamlined in 1937 and painted in the same Daylight colors. They weren't as long as their west coast counterparts, looking like mini Daylights, and were pulled by T&NO 4-6-2s also in the same paint scheme.


The_Sunbeam_Southern_Pacific.JPG
Yes indeed. Several brass models have been done of the P-14 pacific that pulled it. One by Hallmark, and several by Overland. There have been several articles on how to bash the cars, or if you've got the bucks, they've been done in brass. I have a young friend at the club who wants to model this train. It's a nice one and a good layout size train like the Sacramento Daylight. My interest is on the western side of the system, so I don't model much Cotton Belt with the exception of this one:

IMG_0677.JPG


It's my only Cotton Belt steamer, a P-13, and the largest Pacific the SP owned. I got it at a great price and was doing a thing on SP Pacifics at the time, so I made an exception for this one. It's a good looking model. This one belongs to a client of mine. I painted it and did some specific modifications for him, and I liked the result so much I bought one for myself!
 
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Smudge617

Well-Known Member
I finished up the masking on the cars earlier and I've sprayed the second color. The car bodies are baking happily in the oven, and should be out in time for another pic today. The mask lines don't have to be perfect as there will be decal stripes that cover them, but I think I got pretty close!

View attachment 178799
That's the bit I can't get right, the stripes, mine always look ragged.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
That's the bit I can't get right, the stripes, mine always look ragged.
Practice makes perfect! :) masking tape makes a difference too. I use Tamiya tape. it comes in different widths, and is plasticized. It goes around corners well. AK also makes tape in multiple widths that is very good for masking models. One thing, don't burnish the tape, just press it down firmly. Burnishing can ruin the edge.
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
Second color shot and baked. With tomorrow being New Years Eve, and New Years Day afterwards, I will likely have to take a break. My daughter is getting ready to move into her condo (with our help, at least for the light stuff) and New Years Day is when we take the decorations down, so there likely won't be much time for modeling for a couple of days. I'm also still waiting for the stripes and heralds for the Daylight cars.

second color.jpg
 

Espeefan

Well-Known Member
The wife decided she didn't feel like doing anything today, so I get one more modeling day! I masked the Daylight cars for the last color and have painted them. The yellow cars got a coat of clear on the yellow. I tried the clear coat Alclad makes and I like how it goes on. Once again, everything is sitting in the oven.
Final Mask.jpg


Note the masking tape I used. Green painter's tape, preferably from an automotive paint store, and the Tamiya yellow tapes. Your masking tape should be low tack. You want to be able to get it off. Don't cheap out here, you'll regret it. Again, guess how I know. I spray at an angle away from the tape edge. This will minimize wicking. I can live with a little, as decal stripes will be applied over the lines, and will hide minor sins. If you want it to be perfect, or there are no stripes between your colors, spray some of the previous color on your tape edges and allow to dry. This will seal the edges, and if anything does wick under, it'll be the same color as what is already there.
 

Smudge617

Well-Known Member
The wife decided she didn't feel like doing anything today, so I get one more modeling day! I masked the Daylight cars for the last color and have painted them. The yellow cars got a coat of clear on the yellow. I tried the clear coat Alclad makes and I like how it goes on. Once again, everything is sitting in the oven. View attachment 178834

Note the masking tape I used. Green painter's tape, preferably from an automotive paint store, and the Tamiya yellow tapes. Your masking tape should be low tack. You want to be able to get it off. Don't cheap out here, you'll regret it. Again, guess how I know. I spray at an angle away from the tape edge. This will minimize wicking. I can live with a little, as decal stripes will be applied over the lines, and will hide minor sins. If you want it to be perfect, or there are no stripes between your colors, spray some of the previous color on your tape edges and allow to dry. This will seal the edges, and if anything does wick under, it'll be the same color as what is already there.
Ah! I've been using the yellow masking tape, is this the tape I need ?
 




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