Hi everyone, This thread will describe to you my system of weathering steel mill cars. I am trying to model a steel mill layout in my basement. I have some track layed and only right now is the Slag dump completed. As I progress I will post more. 

Class 1 railroads didn't own Slag cars(cinder pots, thimble cars-they're all the same ). They were only owned by the mill companies and they would never be seen in interchange service. They're only use is in carrying slag from the furnaces to the dump. So there are no color schemes or road names associated with the cars. Any paint that was applied by the manufacturer would have been burned off by the heat of the slag.  They also would be coated with a layer of rust over the bare metal.  I will be using my MTH Slag cars for this demo. It's an easy 2 to 4 step process that can be done in as little as 1 day. 

Here we go. This is one of my CNW cars in its factory finish.20190511_142320 The product I use is Sophisticated Finshes from Triangle Coatings. I first found them at Hobby Lobby several years ago but they no longer carry it. Not to worry, if you live close to a big city, check out Blick's Artist Supply stores and see if they carry it or can be ordered.  I first bought a kit  that contained 2, 2 ounce bottles.  They were enough to weather my 7 hot metal cars, so a little goes a long way. You can buy the kit or as I did purchase individual bottles.  20190814_161825

Essentially you get a bottle of paint that has iron powder suspend in it and a rust antiquing solution that is applied over the paint. It oxidizes the iron paint to a rusty finish. 20190814_162052

I also found another product that gave similar results . It's a 3 step process with a reddish-brown colored primer,  then a coating of iron paint,  and an oxidizing solution of copper sulfate in an acid. 

Step 1, optional - disassemble your car and give it a coat of flat black paint, any kind is good, I  used K-Mart brand.  You want to cover the factory finish especially if you are planning to only do spots  of rust on a car.20190804_162255 Step 2- paint the car with the iron paint, all of the car or just where you would want the rusty effect,  including the trucks and couplers. Make some areas heavier than others  for a mix of shades. You can be sloppy,  the car actually looks better. 20190812_170316

The next picture is a car painted with the Modern Masters system . It is a reddish-brown colored primer . You would have to then paint the iron paint on the car according to the directions. 20190812_170421

Step 3- , coat the cars with the rust activating solution. I first started with misting the whole car and then going over it with a brush to assure good coverage. You will find that you're using more activating solution than you thought. 20190814_161252 Once you're done, sit back with your favorite beverage for a couple of hours and watch the rust appear right before your eyes.  20190814_161236

The cars really look great at this point and you can be done . However the finish will come off on your hands if it is not sealed.  

Step 4- optional, wipe down the car with a terrycloth to blend in the colors and remove the excess finish. Then spray the car with Dullcoat to seal it.

20190814_16135020190814_161451

I went one extra step. Before the cars are delivered to the blast furnace,  a coating of lime is sprayed into the thimble to act as a release agent so the slag won't stick. It's very sloppily applied.  I replicated this by using a wash of flat white paint. I had some 20190511_143543Sherwin Williams interior ceiling paint around the house.  I mixed about an ounce or so to a pint or so of water, no hard and fast mixing ratios,  you want something the consistency of milk.  Put a SMALL amount on a brush (I  used a 2 inch trim brush) and remove almost all of the paint.  Then dry brush the raised parts to highlight the car. 

Above is one of my MTH hot metal cars I did several years ago.  The layer of skull around the spout is actually colored sand from one of the craft stores. 

So there you have it! I hope you enjoyed this post and may want to give this technique a try. It's fast and easy and in my opinion gives great results. Let me know what you think.  Thanks for reading.  

Bill 

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

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Thanks for the compliment.  I also weathered a few Gondolas that I  kit bashed. Here's a look. 20190501_11472620190501_114726

I came up with my own name for the Works, and used a word program  to make decals for the cars. 

Bill

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

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Bill, Many thanks for posting this thread. I have the cars, and was wondering how I would go about weathering them. Thanks to you I wonder no more !  I have saved this thread to pdf and have it ready when I tackle this project in the fall.  

Your weathering work is excellent.

Tom

OGR Subscriber-Premium Member/ Forum Member/ LCCA

Thank you Tom,  This weathering technique can be used  on any type of car and the great thing is that nothing looks like rust better than the real thing.  Simple and fast, no multiple coats of paint or chalks. And each time you paint a car, there is enough variation in the finish that they don't look mass produced. 

Bill

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

Thank you everyone for the compliments.  This was my first thread and I'm glad you all liked it. 

I'm attaching a photo of the  slag pit I completed.  Next in line is a holding yard for steel blooms and slabs.20190713_104119

Bill 

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

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Third Rail, excellent slag pit.  Looks like molten lava running down hill.  Since your building a steel mill use the search function to see what others are doing for steel mills.  Roo down in Australia has an exceptional thread running on the 2 Rail Scale forum and I know I've read several others about steel mill structures.

coach joe posted:

Third Rail, excellent slag pit.  Looks like molten lava running down hill.  Since your building a steel mill use the search function to see what others are doing for steel mills.  Roo down in Australia has an exceptional thread running on the 2 Rail Scale forum and I know I've read several others about steel mill structures.

This thread is shaping up to be better!

Bill. Well done on the Slag Track and weathering looking forward to more photos when you get time. Roo.

Roo posted:
coach joe posted:

Third Rail, excellent slag pit.  Looks like molten lava running down hill.  Since your building a steel mill use the search function to see what others are doing for steel mills.  Roo down in Australia has an exceptional thread running on the 2 Rail Scale forum and I know I've read several others about steel mill structures.

This thread is shaping up to be better!

Bill. Well done on the Slag Track and weathering looking forward to more photos when you get time. Roo.

Roo

Thank you so much for the compliments.  I have been following you since I first saw your articles in O Scale  Magazine on Bay Ridge. I saved an electronic copy of that issue and subsequent ones. Have been following your steel mill blog on the 2 rail columns. You area true craftsman. I  wish I could model like you. I have neither the expertise nor the money , but I will  try . I've always admired your work.

Bill

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

rattler21 posted:

B 1B 2B 4 AB 4 BB 5B 6B 7B 8B 9

Bill is quit modest.  Here are other cars he has done, all excellent.  John in Lansing, ILL

John, 

Thanks for posting those pictures of my cars on your home layout. 

If people are interested,  I can do a post on how I converted the Gondolas from O27 to O scale full width.

Bill

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

Bill,  I think many members of the Forum would find your guidance as to how to make an O-scale car from two or more O-27 cars interesting and useful.  As your method works on flat cars as well as gondolas it ought to be disseminated to as large an audience as possible.  John in Lansing, ILL

rattler21 posted:

Bill,  I think many members of the Forum would find your guidance as to how to make an O-scale car from two or more O-27 cars interesting and useful.  As your method works on flat cars as well as gondolas it ought to be disseminated to as large an audience as possible.  John in Lansing, ILL

John, 

Thanks for the support and the vote of confidence.  I will be buying a couple of O27 Gondolas to use in my next how-to. It's another fun and easy project.

Bill

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

Thank you Dave.  And if anyone else out there has a technique also for weathering cars, please chime in and pass on your style . The others and I would like to see your pictures. 

Bill

 

 

There's no scale but O scale

CEO Overbeider Iron and Steel Company,  Crapton division 

Bill: Incredible weathering!! Makes me homesick! LOL!  Used to chase the Union RR slag train dumping on the Slag Mountain in the south hills of the 'Burg. Thanks for the info!!

___________________________________________________________________

 

Pete

 

Boynton Beach, FL. 1035 miles south of Pittsburgh, PA.

 

The P & LE: Operated 1/10 of 1% mileage of class 1 railroads, but moved more than 1% of the nation's tonnage!! THE Little Giant!! 1879-1992 A great regional railroad!!

Most of my layout is steel mill you will have to scratch build everything. Nice pics posted here. Nick

                                                                                                                             

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