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Painting North Shore 745

The paint mixes are a little unusual - partly by eye and memory, and partly from an article that Eric Bronsky wrote for "First & Fastest." I went all over the place on the Orange, mixing up a batch and then comparing it to the actual 354 at IRM. Seems that if I mixed the paint so it looked like the few photos of North Shore cars of the era, it was far off from 354's orange. Finally I located an old-time IRM member (and ex-NSL line employee), who set me straight on that 354 is painted in Milwaukee TMER&L orange, since the museum got a donation of hundreds of gallons of that shade when M&ST was sold to Milwaukee County. I finally settled on a mix of PolyScale D&RGW yellow and D&RGW Orange as a pretty darned close mix. The mix also let me fudge the mix more yellow as needed, to simulate a slight fading. Many of the traditionalists react in horror when I admit to using the water based paints, but they seem to work pretty Becwar_Trainfest_01 decent when carefully applied. You do have to get used to the long dry time, and that the exact shade just after painting will be different as the paint dries over a week or two. It is very tough to weather with those paints and they do not dry brush especially well. But I can airbrush in the basement without driving everyone from the house as happens with solvent paints.

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Bill Becwar - The Milwaukee Electric Railway & Transit Historical Society

November 2007

All photos copyright Q-Car Company, Inc.

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