Suggestions About How To Weathering Buildings.

Dave Hughes Dec 30, 2007

  1. Dave Hughes

    Dave Hughes TrainBoard Member

    Hi all. I was wondering if someone would like to post a how to on weathering buildings. I have been looking at a lot of threads that mention weathering techniques, but these threads do not go into detail about specific steps. For example, in a recent thread stevenb mentions a “wash with black and then a brownish dry brush”. My question and my request would be for someone to post a how to on exactly what washing and dry brushing is and how you do it. Also, I know some weather with chalks. This would be good too.

  2. Flash Blackman

    Flash Blackman TrainBoard Member

    Moving to Inspection Pit

    Dave: I am sure there are many who could contribute to such a thread. This How To Forum is the place where we like to summarize those threads, so I will move this thread to the Inspection Pit. You can see it there and I am sure there will be many responses.
  3. smallbore3p

    smallbore3p TrainBoard Member

    Hi Dave,
    Originally, I weathered my structures with washes of brown and black (9 or 10 parts water/ 1 part black or brown acrylic paint) but lately have become a fan of using powdered chalks.... Basically, I take the chalk (brown and black are most common) and with a soft brush simply stroke it on to the desired level of weathering.... One advantage of the chalks is that they go on loose and can be blown off ( I use canned air) if you think you used too much... Different colors can be used depending on the look you light brown for a rusty look....
    One reason I like chalks better than the wash is that the chalks tend to have a more realistic 'grimy' look. Also, I'm better able to control the look than with the wash which if you aren't careful can look more like moldy water damage than the weathered look you want....
    When I'm satisfied with the level of weathering, I apply a light layer of Testor's Dullcote from a spray can... This locks all the chalk in and gives it one more layer of dullness which completes the weathered look....
    One more note: I don't own an airbrush which would offer many other weathering possibilities......
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 31, 2007
  4. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

    Smallbore, would blowing through a straw remove chalk the same way as you do with "canned air"?
  5. AB&CRRone

    AB&CRRone TrainBoard Supporter

    A "wash" is a very dilute coloring material such as paint, pigment, ink, etc. "Dry brushing" uses full strength paint with most of it wiped dry from the brush before applying.

    I don't weather rolling stock but have weathered stuctures using washes and dry brushing. Here is a website that shows a variety of weathering products and "how-to" books. Dr. Ben is no relation to me and I have only used the instant age and rust washes sold by him.

  6. Fotheringill

    Fotheringill TrainBoard Member

    As to mortar, it is a very difficult thing to get right. I use the following method-

    A very thin wash of Durham's Rock Hard Putty. It is the right light tan color for mortar. You can use a very thin wash of diluted white acrylic paint, if you want white.

    First- Paint the brick the desired color.

    Second- Quickly brush the wash on with a very soft brush. The liquid will collect in the depressed mortar lines. Use a damp sponge to wipe off the coloring from the wash from the brick face itself, without absorbtion of the liquid in the mortar joints. Repeat if needed. Let each coating dry thoroughly.

    If you are doing an older building where the mortar may be darker with age or grimey, just color the paint darker for the wash or add black to the Durham's to the desired color.
  7. smallbore3p

    smallbore3p TrainBoard Member

    I suppose it would....although it would be decidedly 'lo-tech'........
    BTW, be careful not to breathe IN through the straw or else your throat will be weathered....
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2008
  8. smallbore3p

    smallbore3p TrainBoard Member

    As to mortar on a brick building, I first paint the building boxcar red..let it dry thoroughly and then with my thumb work spackle (not joint compound) into the joints being careful to wipe off any excess..... THEN, a thin wash of grimy black will darken the spackle to give a weathered mortar look... FURTHER, a good weathering using powdered chalks makes a nice finish...
  9. piston_8

    piston_8 TrainBoard Member


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