Breda LRV - Painting and weights

Work continues on my Breda LRV project...

With the sides made and the chassis mostly done, attention turned to detailing the bodies. I needed some rooftop detail, and since the roofs are what you normally see of model trains, I wanted something reasonably detailed. Knowing I couldn't make anything that detailed from scratch, I turned to my parts box to see what I could scrounge:

The grey bit on the rear shell is a small air conditioning spare part from a US loco. The black bit is a winterisation hatch from another American loco. The smaller cream part is a chopped down casting of a roof top air conditioner from a series 24 Japanese coach, while the two large cream parts are duplicated A/C units from a Japanese Yamanote line train. On the back of the rear body I've drilled holes for the pantograph.

For weights, I bought some cheap scuba diving weights and melted them down on the BBQ, then poured the metal into a scrap aluminium foil tray and squashed the metal flat with a block of wood. Once dry this made a nice sheet of metal that is a) heavy, b) easily cut with tin snips, and c) just the right thickness for shoehorning into odd places in models.

I cut out two small weights to sit under the chassis, and even with just these two weights the model is significantly heavier than any of my other trams and LRVs. That will mean good traction, and good conductivity.

With weights done and details added, it was on to paint. I brush painted on a layer of Vallejo primer, carefully tracing around the windows:

Once that was dry, I found some silver paint and brushed that on.

While I have some really nice paint brushes that make this work much easier, it is still very tricky getting a smooth even coat of paint on something as fiddly as this! Unfortunately I had to add 2-3 layers of the silver paint, which ended up looking quite patchy and lumpy towards the end. The dark grey paint didn't go on a nicely as I wanted either and ended up lifting when I removed the masking tap, so it has ended up looking a bit rough now.

Having come this far, I don't want to let a miserable paint job ruin the final result! So I'm experimenting with using paintable masking fluid to blot out the windows before airbrushing on nice smooth laters of paint. I'm experimenting on a smaller tram model first, just in cast it all goes wrong! Watch this space...

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Friday, May 8 2015, 8:46 PM JD Lowe says...
You're making excellent progress. That trick of melting the weights on the bbq was impressive. Although, my significant other might see things differently if I tried that :-) Looking forward to the next instalment.

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