^ To easily remove most printed on lettering elements such as numbers, just sprinkle a bit of comet on your kitchen counter, then add a few drops a water. With a toothpick, make a paste and then apply to the offending lettering element. Carefully rub off in a circular motion, ensuring you don't remove underlying paint. It will take a few minutes but if you're ever worried just wipe off the paste from the shell and observe. If you need more grit, add a few sprinkles of comet to the paste, same with water. Once done, it's easy to wipe down the kitchen counter and carry on. Apply the new decal in the usual way, set it, let it dry, spray with dull finish and it should be very difficult to see that anything was changed. Here is my result under the glaring, unforgiving high-res digital lens.
I did some Krylon on that Seaboard hopper a few times. Glossed for the patch decals, no problem. Then matte, one side no problem. Other side, a bit overzealous and it melted the decals. So now I'm a bit gun shy with spray cans..
MODEL FINISHED: Here are the latest images courtesy the very unforgiving and revealing high-res digital camera lens. The engine shell and cab were weathered separately, then reassembled onto chassis for weathering blend with trucks, tanks and other connection points. This was a typical match-up from 1994-95. More final results photos to follow over the next couple of days.
MODEL FINISHED: Nice prototypical match-up. Notice the removed wind deflectors and windshield wipers. This may have been the only time I *removed* such details from a model -- usually I'm adding them. As for leased VIA 6453, that is a pre-Rapido kitbash from a Kato unit. Thankfully this is no longer necessary and we have much better Canadian models of these two prototypes (and many others) available to us in RTR plastic these days. This was not possible in 2012 when 6453 was built and there were certainly no plastic RTR or kit CP Big Alcos available at the time either. Lastly, the camera revealed the PTC lines were not quite up to par; those have now been fixed and look better.
I was very young, but I remember the mid-90s CP rainbow era, as they ran a large number of trains over the CSX in Michigan between Detroit and Chicago. C424s, big Ms, SD40-2s, red barns, brand new AC4400s, GP9us, SD40s, SD40-2s, a myriad of leasers, plus the SOO Geeps, SD40s, SD40-2s and SD60s made for some very colorful consists.
Those were some great times, one could stand along the CSX in places W of Lansing and see the headlights of a line up of East bound CP trains running a couple miles apart heading to meet a similar lineup waiting at Grand Ledge to run West. Next to no traffic of any kind shines the rails thru the area these days. The CP traffic totally gone for years now.
Regarding the term “Bomb Trains” I’ve heard it used in days past by Lansing area railfans referring to tank trains of all kinds on the GTW/CN, often long cuts of propane or DOWX, Dow Chemical, cars. Not heard it used in 20+ years.
Terrific looking models you’ve made here, thanks for sharing your excellent craftsmanship with us and describing it so well. Great comments all who added information to the thread.
MODEL FINISHED: Back end view of CP 4721 beside leased VIA 6453. I realize these leased VIA units were sometimes seen with uncharacteristic heavy weathering during this time period, even if they were only 5 years old. I would say there are also lots of photos of fairly clean VIA units in CP service, so heavy weathering isn't a given for these. For this duo, I think it looks better for most of the weathering to be on the end-of-life big alco.