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Monday, May 28, 2012

#426 Project ~ The Infamous Golden Yellow Paint Scheme

Painting a San Diego 400 Class 5 car in its as-delivered Mission Yellow and Mahogany Brown Paint Scheme. 
Now that this car has been properly prepared for painting, lets, oh I don't know, paint it?

To make sure the delicate yellow paint shows up in its intended hue, the car is first painted with primer. I prefer good old fashioned Floquil paints applied with a good old fashioned Air Brush. These enamels require a day of drying between coats. So although the entire paint process is shown here all at once, at least a day elapsed between each color application.

Research I have done has shown that for cars built around the same time as these cars (1924), the favored interior color was a white of some sort. Most folks don't paint the interior of their models, but as time will tell, these cars will look so much better with a painted interior. Not to mention the protection the paint will provide against the deterioration of the brass. I chose Floquils Antique White as the interior color for #426.

After the interior paint has dried for a day, the windows, doors, bottom opening and any other orifice to the interior is masked off with ordinary masking tape.

Today's recipe for San Diego Electric Railway Mission Yellow is:
10 - 20 parts CNW Yellow
1 part Rock Island Maroon
It turns out that Floquil Rock Island Maroon is out of production of course. But another Tuscan Red color should work. I only chose Rock Island Maroon because its a gloss. The idea is this: CNW Yellow is the closest yellow available to the chrome yellow used on these cars. So by adding a Tuscan color, its reddish hue will push the yellow more towards orange without actually crossing the line into orangedom (These cars have been described as "Golden Yellow" but have never have been referred to as an orange of any sort). And its brownish qualities will "darken" the yellow a bit.

After the yellow has dried for at least a day, the entire body is masked off except for the doors. Today's recipe for Mahogany is:
1 part Roof Brown
1 part Tuscan Red
One thing I ended up regretting was not masking off the sliver of body showing between the doors and steps. This has proved troublesome to touch up afterwards. So next time!
Also, this color mix is a bit dark. Either it needs to have some white added, or the doors need to be lightened during the weathering process.

I have a theory about the roofs of these cars. I believe they were originally painted with a Tuscan Brown paint that oxidized over time. Later color photos reveal these cars roofs having achieved a rusty reddish brown. This reddish brown is the most common color used with modelers and restorers of San Diego cars. But I'm certain that when these cars were new, the roofs were more of a light chocolate brown. For this color I used:

1 part Roof Brown
1 part Southern Freight Car Brown
1 part CSX New Image Gold.

Details such as headlights, retrievers, trolley pole hold down hooks and towers, and bumper are brush painted Floquil Engine Black. The window frames are brush painted with the Mahogany mix. And there we have it! My latest, greatest shot at San Diego Electric Railways elusive Mission Yellow and Mahogany Brown paint scheme.

Next up is powering this model with Hollywood Foundry's new Diablo mechanism. Awesome stuffs so stay tuned! Yes sir! Awesome stuffs!