The new issue of Model Rail features a short article by Yours Truly on the interesting weathering technique known as ‘Pre-shading’. Adapted from what I see regularly in a number of military and aviation modeling magazines, this is something that I’ve only really embraced in the past 18 months or so. I’d been thinking of trying it for some time and limited my first forays to scenic objects, such as steel girders, a couple of turntable kits and a water tower.
It was only when I started work on my Airbrushing for Railway Modellers book that I resolved to explore the technique a bit further, especially where rolling stock was concerned. Starting with a 7mm scale wagon, the results were so pleasing that I moved onto 4mm scale vehicles and, although the smaller scale needs a bit more accuracy and control over the airbrush, I soon got used to it and it’s now become one of my staple techniques, especially for freight rolling stock.
I’ve yet to try it in earnest on a locomotive yet, but I have made a few initial attempts on some scrap bodyshells by way of practice. With a few interesting steam and diesel projects coming up, I think I’ll give the pre-shading a whirl and see what happens. Look out for the results in Model Rail soon.
Meanwhile, here are some images of the finished models that feature in the article in question, in MR159 – Out Now!
Another model that suits the pre-shading method is this plank-sided van. A Bachmann body on a Parkside kit-built chassis, this is another fictitious NCB stores van for my Maudetown Colliery layout.
This Cambrian Models kit of an LMS steel-bodied van builds into a lovely vehicle. The delicate shading of the body panels would be much more difficult to achieve by weathering after the livery coats have been applied. However, with the pre-shading method, this convincing finish was relatively easy. And quick!