Dirty vent louvers

Discussion in 'Electo-Motive Division (EMD)' started by meteor910, Oct 10, 2014.

  1. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    re SLSF o/w SW1500's, GP15-1's, MP15's.

    Virtually all the pics I have of the above three Frisco orange/white locomotives show the hood side louvers to be very dirty, i.e., black.

    In the past, I have blackened grills, fan vents, and exhaust stacks with a dilute wash of Polly-S loco black, which has worked very well. It is not so good, though, with louvers - see my H10-44 SLSF 270 in the March, 2011 (vol 3, no 1) issue of "The Meteor" as an example.

    Does anyone have a good technique for neatly darkening these louvered vents? Without doing so, the model looks like, well, just like a model, in particular on the sides of the hood that are white. Totally unrealistic! I am in the process of detailing the new Athearn SW1500 and the GP15-1 as well as the Atlas MP15, all HO, and just have to do something with all those side louvers. I'm afraid to use my wash on them for fear of making another mess like on the o/w FM.

    I'm going to get some black weathering dust and give that a try. Any other ideas out there?


  2. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member Staff Member

    Ken I think your Weathering powder approach is a good one, the nice thing about weathering powders is a pencil eraser will remove (before dull-coat) it if some gets where you dont want it LOL.

    As a side note. The reason these get so dirty, is behind those louvered doors were/are the air filters (if you can call them that). They are basically a loose type fiber, that were very well soaked in oil, kinda sat in little wire cages to hold them in place good for catching dirt, soot and such, some of the oil would eventually leak down where the Louvers were, thats why they were so dirty and messy there.
  3. klrwhizkid

    klrwhizkid Administrator Staff Member Administrator Frisco.org Supporter

  4. gjslsffan

    gjslsffan Staff Member Staff Member

  5. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Good reminder Keith! I'll give it a try, maybe even with Frisco pencils!

  6. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Keith - I tried a pencil (#2) on a bunch of the louvers on the Athearn SLSF GP15-1. Worked very well. Thanks again for the reminder! I'll finish the rest of them when I get to the "15" shortly to refine a few more of the details. I've decided to keep the Athearn horn. Looking at a number of pics, it seems the Friscos, at least some of them, had that type of horn early on.

  7. meteor910

    meteor910 2009 Engineer of the Year Staff Member Frisco.org Supporter

    Yesterday, I finished up on three diesel detailing projects - GP35's SLSF 717 and 725 (Athearn) and GP15-1 SLSF 100 (Genesis). All went well except for a clearance problem I had between the two GP35's with their rear plow pilots (DW #130) interfering with one another when running back to back. I solved it by putting on a longer Kadee coupler (#146 replacing #148) at the rear. The Details West pilot is a bit oversize (as are most of DW's white metal cast detail parts). Anyway, the longer coupler solved the problem.

    The point of this post, though, is with the GP15-1. I used the technique Keith suggested to "dirty up" the many side louvers in the GP15-1 body, and it worked very well. The #2 pencil lead stuck to the orange louvers better than the white ones, but they look just fine. I had a little trouble making each louver dirty up uniformly, but that's not a problem - the real-life ones are not uniform as well. I decided to not be real picky on the 15-1; I put an antenna whip in the base, but left it mounted (incorrectly) off-set to the right side of the cab roof, and I left the m/u hose holder on the rear in place, rather than replacing it with a DW plow pilot to match that Genesis has on the nose.

    Thanks again Keith! A much better technique than my trying to get the cast on louvers to look right with a dilute black wash.

    I have the three of them together right now - SLSF 100 in the lead, followed by SLSF 717, then SLSF 725. They look good, and run together surprisingly well. The two Sligo Iron Works wooden ore cars are back at the end of the train, just ahead of the caboose, full of two more loads of good old Sligo iron ore for Rearden metal production in the old iron furnaces just west of Newburg.

    Now, on to the Genesis GP38-2's (shouldn't take too long!) and to finish up some cars, including another Pullman, and yet another 1/72 airplane (WW-1 Fokker D-VII). I've been on a real modeling binge lately - seems to happen every November!

  8. Jim James

    Jim James Staff Member Staff Member

    What, no photos? Come on Ken. Hook us up.

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