John Pryke, modeler of the New York, New Haven and Hartford demonstrates weathering on a standard city building model railroad kit. He has added display windows and curtains which make the building look a little bit more lived in. The first step to make the model railroad kit look more real is adding mortar to the bricks. He uses a water mix of polly scale concrete with seven parts of water and nine parts standard rubbing alcohol which allows it to dry a lot faster. He paints it on the brick surface which will show up like mortar on the bricks.
Next is to add a black wash to the bottom green section. The black wash is made of one part india ink to 30 parts of alcohol. The black wash is necessary because most painted surfaces on a city building would absorb dirt over the years. This wash will highlight the detail as well as make it look like it’s been in a busy and dirty city.
There are many things one can do to a city building model railroad kit. John shows a model that has a solid cast lintel over the top of each window. These were painted with straight concrete paint rather than the wash. He has also added a sign to the front as well as window signs. An air conditioner is also a nice touch, as well as a washed out sign for an old movie on the back. He made this sign from a decal.
After applying the decal, he just kept applying solvoset until it sunk into the brick. To make it look old, he applied his mortar wash over it and repainted some of the brick on the edges. For more weathering tips and tricks or more Allen Keller Videos, visit the Model Railroad Academy archives.