Halloween Header 2
Vol. 1 Issue 11
October 2009 
Bargin Bin Image
This month we are featuring an article on New Haven railroad and details about "How To" paint and letter the New Haven's FL-9 locomotive.
Micro Coat GlossRead a little about the history of the New Haven Railroad and New Haven's other cab units such as the Alco PA1's.
Learn how to make your models "pop" with just the right color and patina. 

                            Micro Coat Gloss        
The Micro Gloss finish is more than just a pretty look. This is one tough finish, and a real breakthrough in a modern formulation of water reducible acrylic resin. For models that get a lot of handling this is the answer. Even the Micro Coat Flat and Micro Coat Satin continue to look like new after a great deal of handling. One of the main reasons for the Micro Coat finishes is that they are the ideal way to be sure that your Microscale Decals perform up to their potential for realism. Micro Coat Clear gives you a 'wet look' shine that replicates the new synthetic paint used on the real thing. It is also the answer for a glossy base necessary for decaling. All the Micro Coat Finishes use the same water clear acrylic resin, which is tough and flexible and adheres strongly to paint and plastic. It is rated to last at least twenty years under ordinary conditions, for models this should be forever. 


Micro Coat Gloss

By the early 1950's the New Haven Railroad had given up on extending its west end electric zone from New Haven, Connecticut to Boston, Massachusetts along its famous "Shoreline Route".  The requisite locomotive change at New Haven was costly as well, so the railroad contracted with EMD for a fleet of dual power locomotives that could run through New Haven into New York City.  Delivered starting in 1956 with bold black, white and vermillion graphics, EMD's  FL-9 was a visually striking locomotive design that solved the engine change problem.
Painting your FL9 model:
The following paint and lettering method can be applied to any of the FL-9 models that have been imported over the years, as well as the New Haven's other cab units such as the Alco PA1's.  The key to making this paint scheme "pop" is the color sequence:  It is important to first apply the white, both to areas that will remain white, and also as an undercoat for the orange. Black is applied last.  Before getting started, here are a few tips:
-Collect some good photos of the prototype to use as references. See links below.
-Where possible, it is better to leave off the handrails during painting,   install them after the paint has dried, then paint them black with a fine brush.
-You will be applying 4 or more layers of paint depending on your choice to use a primer coat, so use a good airbrush for thin coats. 
These instructions call for Floquil paints but options are also listed for Scalecoat and acrylic paints:
          -Black-    Floquil Engine Black
          -White-    Floquil Reefer White
          -Vermillion-  Equal parts Floquil Reefer Orange and Caboose Red
(If you are using Scalecoat paints, Southern Pacific Scarlet SC-29 is close.  If you can find them, Accupaints offered NH red-orange AP-16 and Badger Model Flex offered NH red-orange 16-182.)
1. The models shown were kitbashed from black plastic body shells, so a thin coat of Floquil primer gray was airbrushed onto the ends, sides and nose, just enough to cover the black.  This ensures brighter whites and oranges.
2. When the primer is dry, airbrush a uniform coat of Floquil reefer white to the end, sides and nose.
3. When the white is dry, mask all areas that will remain white along the grill area, nose and ends.  I left exposed several rectangular sections in the grill area that will eventually be black.  In the photos these dark areas are visible through the stainless steel air grills.
4. Airbrush a coat of the Floquil red-orange mix, covering the sides between the lower two rivet strips, continuing around the end and the upper portion of the nose and number boards.
5. Mask over the areas that will remain orange. 
6. Apply a coat of  Floquil black to the roof, the middle portion of the sides below the grills, around the ends, pilots, tops of nose and along the bottom side edges.
7. After the paint has sufficiently dried, remove all masking and airbrush a thin coat of Floquil flat finish. Floquil flat actually dries to a satin finish that is good for decals. Allow to dry thoroughly.
(Note: In the model photo you will notice unit #2032's nose is missing a portion of black between the small "cat whisker" elements and the white portion of the nose.  No kidding, this is the way #2032 came out of the paint shop at EMD!  The mistake was theirs and she ran this way for years.)
Applying decals, finish coats and weathering:
-Decals are Microscale set #87-937 for HO or 60-937 for N scale.-
8. Place a few drops of Micro-Set decal fluid on the model before sliding on the decal.  Quickly position the decal with a small brush or toothpick before the decal starts to soften. Place more Micro-Set on top of the decal, and draw away excess fluid with the corner of a paper towel.
9. Pay close attention to each decal, watching for the point where it is starts to grip the surface of the model, but not yet dry. At this point carefully apply drops of Micro-Sol without touching the decal, again drawing away any excess fluid with a piece of towel.
10. Once the decals are thoroughly dry, airbrush another light coat of Floquil flat over the decals.  Additional light oversprays of thinned Floquil rail brown were used to bring out the underbody details, plus a fine mist on the rooftops.
11. Final steps:
-Attach etched stainless steel Farr air grills by Detail Associates, GR2701.  I use acrylic matte medium from the art supply store for these because they need some flexibility to stay attached.
-Attach and paint handrails black.
-Install window glazing, again using acrylic matte medium to avoid fogging the plastic window material.
-Sit back and enjoy the results of your work!

Micro Coat Gloss

http://www.nhrhta.org/    NHRR Historical Association
http://www.railroadartprints.com    (click on "Historic Photos")
http://www.rr-fallenflags.org/nh/nh.html  (good black and white shots)

2009 Catalog IN THE WORKS

Each month we will be letting you know what we're working on for the near future. Please remember to check out this newsletter each month for details of upcoming releases.

Limited Edition (N Scale & MC)
- GTW Bicentennial
- D&H Bicentennial
- ICG Bicentennial
- CNW Bicentennial
- Missouri Pacific Bicentennial

Microscale has been serving the model train hobby market for over 50 years. We pride ourselves in delivering the finest quality products and service. We also provide a variety of custom printing services for manufacturers and other organizations alike. If you have a custom decal project and want us to provide you with an estimate please contact us at vickie@microscale.com or ryan@microscale.com.