Last Saturday I had a visit from a very old friend, Les Williams. I have been doing work for Les for nearly twenty years. Les, like myself is moving more towards O gauge, although we both still have quite an interest in OO.
Les had recently purchased a new blue Heljan Class 25 and a second-hand blue Heljan Class 20. He also brought a Heljan Catfish for weathering at the same time.
I had already weathered at least six other O gauge loco’s for Les, these ranged from a lightly weathered Deltic to an absolutely filthy Class 40.
After a quick discussion it was clear what Les required and a start was made. As Les has to drive up for the day from Bedford, I have to complete the work in about eight hours. I usually take three steps to do this task over 2 or 3 days. The steps are the Roof and Cab Ends, the frame and bogies and the body sides last. I usually leave the first two steps to completely dry, but usually work and wipe the sides when the paint is still tacky, to create streaks and runs. Doing it all at the same time means it is difficult to handle the loco without unwanted finger marks.
The catfish was a medium weathering plus Les wanted ballast residue in the bottom. I actually sprinkled the ballast in over wet paint as time was short and I have to say the effect of the ballast being sprinkled was quite pleasing. More experimenting to follow I think!