Weathering Track Made Easy

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NMRA Master Model Railroader Gerry Leone says, “Track is a model too, so it only makes sense to make your track look as good as your rolling stock, your locomotives and as your structures.” In this video, Gerry shares five easy techniques for weathering your track. Gerry provides a step-by-step tutorial for a few of the techniques and demonstrates the finished product for each one.

As a precaution, Gerry notes that weathered track will appear smaller on your layout as opposed to straight out of the box track. If you’re an HO scale and using code 100 or code 83 it’ll make it look like smaller rail.

Tips for Weathering Track

Micro Engineering makes preweathered track. It comes in 3 feet lengths of flex track. The downside to buying pre-weathered track is that the chemical process used does not conduct electricity. You would have to file the weathering away to conduct electricity. As an alternative, you can buy the weathering solution made by Micro Engineering. It’s the exact same solution they use on their pre-weathered track, but you apply it yourself.

One of the most popular ways of weathering track with model railroaders is to use a can of spray paint. The downside to this method is the lack of variation in color. An alternative option is using paint markers. They are sold in a variation of colors. Testors and Woodland Scenics sell a set of paint markers that are virtually the same type of thing. It’s a very efficient way of weathering track.

The last technique Gerry demonstrates is hand painting the track. He says this technique is surprisingly quicker than you’d assume and you can achieve a wide variation in color. Gerry uses four different colors of paints in the tutorial.