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Should I buy some proper sign-writing paint?

Discussion in 'Heritage Rolling Stock' started by flying scotsman123, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Is it worth me buying some proper sign-writing paints? Will it stop me having to go over everything twice as I currently do? At the moment I just use our normal Williamson's paints, decanted and thinned with a dash of owatrol oil to make it flow better, this results in white and cream on dark surfaces needing 2 coats, and yellow 3. Or is that inevitable even with "proper" paints?

    If so, anyone recommend any? Preferably ones that last sat around on a shelf for a while, as obviously it's not a regular thing (although quite a lot has come my way recently, hence my pondering). I tend to use mostly white, yellow, black and cream.
     
  2. Sawdust

    Sawdust Member

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    Yes.

    Sawdust.
     
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  3. Southernman99

    Southernman99 New Member Friend

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    Yes.

    One shot is ok but thinned with a drop of white spirit it flows very well.
    Williamsons is good for touching up anything that has already been varnished.
     
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  4. gwalkeriow

    gwalkeriow Well-Known Member

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    Definitely yes!
     
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  5. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    One shot seems like the market leader, but anyone tried the craftmaster signwriting enamels? In some cases they're about 30% cheaper than one shot.

    Edit - or "Wright-it" paints?
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2018
  6. toplight

    toplight Member

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    I watched a contractor guy line out Owsden Halls tender earlier this year (which has since gone to Quainton Road to run behind their hall. ).The guy was a full time painter (mostly of traction engines) and had a long chat with him. He was using the Craftmaster signwriter paint for the lining and said it was good stuff. He was also using their low tack lining out tape to mark where the lines needed to go. He said he used both Williamsons and Craftmaster paint depending on what customers wanted but reckoned the Craftmaster stuff was much better (but more expensive). He did suggest to that the railway can open a trade account with them to get better prices.
    I have checked the Craftmaster website and it is very good, but their stuff seems very expensive. They don't actually make the paint it is made by HMG so might be worth contacting them as they can probably supply the same paint cheaper. Craftmaster probably buy it stick it in their tins and then double the price. This is HMGs website https://www.hmgpaint.com/
     
  7. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Thanks for that. Think I may go for the craft master paints then, as their signwriter ones are actually cheaper than 1-shot. I don't think we'll be changing from Williamson's for normal painting any time soon though!

    Now to ask very nicely for an expenses form... :)
     
  8. toplight

    toplight Member

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    Yeah you should be fine as you only need a small amount.You can see their range and prices here. https://craftmaster.myshopify.com/collections/signwriting-paints

    The other one to check out for coach paints which again I haven't used but was suggested to me by the NRM who have used it. Their website with all the colours in BS or RAL standards is excellent.

    https://www.smithandallan.com/products/tekaloid-paint/

    I have seen with the Williamson paint that it fades a lot although I have used their chassis black etc on my underframe and that is very good.
     
  9. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Yes Williamson's does fade but with our paintshop allowing fairly frequent repaints it's not as big an issue as it might be for some railways, hopefully we'll have a carriage shed soon too to further slow fading.
     
  10. toplight

    toplight Member

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    Have a look at this video for an LMS coach being done in Northern Ireland, nice work

     
  11. Andy Williams

    Andy Williams Member

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    I always use One-Shot for lettering, as its opacity is better than most other makes. For lining I use flat paints such as Wright's Cover-It, although for black or grey lines I sometimes use Craftmaster undercoat. All of Craftmasters' products are very good. I consider their coach enamel and undercoat to be the best product for brush painting currently on the market, with Williamsons running them a close second. Tekaloid isnt the paint it once was. I used to use it all the time, but I now believe that it is alkyd based, and thus (for me) more difficult to get the same standard of finish as before. I have always lined out using thin chalk lines as guides. It always looks a lot better than using tape.
     
  12. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    How does the opacity of craftmaster signwriting paints compare with one-shot?
    It is possible to get a good looking edge with tape, especially with the right tape, but it seems there are just as few people capable of doing it as there are doing it freehand.
     
  13. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    That video was something of an inspiration when I first saw it!
     
  14. Insider

    Insider New Member

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    Have a chat with Wrights of Lymm for signwriting paint, brushes, scumbling items etc etc
    Dewi Jones
    Gwili Railway
     
  15. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Thanks, I've had a few bits and pieces off them before, what's the opacity of their signwriting paint like?
     
  16. Andy Williams

    Andy Williams Member

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    Craftmaster signwriting paints are very good indeed, but my personal preference for lettering is One-Shot. If you compare say painting white letters on a black background then I think One-Shot edges it with opacity. The finest signwriting paints were made by Keeps of London, unfortunately no longer obtainable. Their paints used traditional pigments rather than the synthetic ones used today. A tin of their orange ochre weighed about four times as much as a similar sized tin of the modern equivalent

    I agree that you can get a good result with tape if done properly, but I am a bit of a traditionalist and think that freehand lining done well always looks a lot better. I think that part and parcel of railway preservation is the retention of the traditional skills. There are currently some very good signwriters around in the movement. It is all down to patience, practice, and having the right materials. I taught myself, starting some 48 years ago. The first results wouldn't have won any prizes but things have definitely improved with time. I wish you every success with your signwriting.

    Andy
     
  17. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Thanks for your thoughts. I think based on price and the fact there are some other bits and pieces I want I'll probably go with craftmaster if the difference is reasonably small. I don't think I'll be changing my lining out methods any time soon; I can completely line a MK1 coach in 2 days in yellow/black to a pretty neat standard, and that is the sort of thing that can be time sensitive. I have found an excuse to have a play with some gold leaf soon though as well. I always enjoy trying something new, whole reason I got into this was me looking at something and saying "I reckon I can have a crack at that", so far I haven't had any disasters!
     
  18. Daddsie71b

    Daddsie71b Member Friend

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    As a signwriter by trade (but sadly lapsed), I am deeply heartened to read this thread. Well done for not succumbing to the dark side of vinyl transfers.
     
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  19. M59137

    M59137 Well-Known Member

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    I keep having debates about vinyls vs signwritten. I argue strongly for the latter but am constantly at odds with a few individuals convinced that there is little difference between the two and therefore vinyls are supposedly superior given their speed and ease. Grrrrrrrr!!!

    PS: our coaches are still signwritten so thus far we're winning the debate!

    Sent from my HTC U Play using Tapatalk
     
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  20. flying scotsman123

    flying scotsman123 Resident of Nat Pres

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    Thought I'd put this here rather than starting a new thread as I suspect anyone who will know will have answered here before. I was just about to prepare some drawings for what I thought was a two tone lettering scheme for the tops of GWR poster boards:

    IMG_20180923_063013924.jpg

    It was only when I looked carefully that I noticed there's actually a shadow beyond the black, but it doesn't look painted to me. How was this done/how do I go about reproducing it? A stain/varnish mix of some description perhaps?
     

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