Profile Photo
Gary Stevenson
31 articles

Weathering: Too much versus Too little?

February 10, 2017 · in Aviation · · 33 Comments

Right! - How much weathering is too much?
I personally think these Viggens are overdone myself - you don't see them like that in real life...waitaminute!? Oooops!

33 responses

  1. This is deeply disturbing. Do you mean to say, that we should actually take the time to study photos, rather than following the current trend in the modelling community;-)

  2. It's easy to OVER DOO weathering. I try to use reference photos if possible. Otherwise I'll keep it light.

  3. I did a lot of weathering on my recent early F4U builds. But that was after I studied numerous pictures of the original planes. Those Corsairs based in the Solomon Islands were pretty beat up and grungy. It made things worse when the planes were sometimes shared by two Squadrons. That meant that the planes were constantly in use and very little time was left for cleaning after the routine maintenance was done.

    Excellent point though.

    Cool picture too.

  4. It IS easy to get heavy-handed if you're not careful. However, adding some wear and grunge as appropriate does give a model more dimension I think. Sometimes we get eager and cross the line a tad, but hey, it's all modeling!

  5. You all make great points. It is a great photo though.

  6. Cool idea, Gary. Like it a lot.
    How about this one?

    "Modelling is art. Why let only naturalism count?"

  7. Good topic Gary, a lot of good responses, and I must agree with almost everybody, especially Halvar, that modeling is an art.

    Too much or too little is always on a modelers mind, and we've all seen heavy weathering and none at all look equally good. So what does one do ?.

    I think a lot of times, our models actually look better than the real thing, especially when you actually look at the oil leaking warped skin aircraft we are trying to recreate. So from there we have to always go from pristine to somewhat worn, but not totally trashed. Too recreate this, takes experience, and learning. I have to admit within my own skills I think I'm very good at shading panels but have a lot to learn about paint chipping. Eventually you will find what works. Take a few chances, learn by your mistakes, talk to your model buddies , enjoy this hobby !

  8. There are many clichés in the modeling world, such as "so and so aircraft were used in peacetime so they were well maintained (which is supposed to be the same as: clean)". Heh. Well maintained can be very far from clean, especially on the undersides where all the oil keeps ending up, peacetime or not, jet or prop. Add also all the paint bleaching due to UV and other elements. Both shown very well on this wonderful photo (thanks for sharing).

    I'd also agree with Halvar that modeling is art, so photorealism, (if ever achievable), is not the only possible way to go. For centuries, artists have been improving on the dirt and grime of reality, with good results :). Or exaggerated it. If it looks good in modeling, it is good IMHO.

    • I find it best to model to please myself & don't enter competitions or compare my models to others. They look good to me & I suppose that's satisfaction enough.
      Since our local model club has instigated a 'bring & show' section to our meetings, I've been taking pics & find that some look better than others - with or without weathering.
      C'est la vie huh~?

  9. So submerging model aircraft in a wash mix is allowed?
    Great information and comments guys.
    California Steve

  10. If you're going to do what some (including you, without that photo) would say is "too much," it's good to have photographic evidence as a guide. When you don't, you can just think of the environment it's being used in, the nature of such use, and pretty much get a good idea where to go (airplanes on the Eastern Front on both sides are going to be grungy, with muddy wheels and wheel wells, etc.). Of course all that comes from research. The most important aspect of modeling.

  11. I have always looked at modeling/weathering as a linear scale with "Artistic" on one end and "Realistic" on the other, then I try to shoot for the middle (although, at times I have found myself a little right or left of center). Thing is, as long as I am happy with it, then I couldn't give a rusty f**k in a rolling donut what others think. I model for myself, not for others.

  12. The nice thing about this hobby. You can do it, exactly as you want to. It is never wrong. Picture is great.
    Or is it fake and are we watching a 1/48-1/32 model?
    Regards, Dirk/The Netherlands.

  13. Also consider that the paints used on aircraft today are different from what was used from the very beginning. How they are applied today, for instance on US Navy aircraft, the paint itself is radar absorbent, literally by just touching an airframe with your bare hands it will absorb the natural oil on your hand. Just hanging out on our HH-60H Seahawk doing pre-flight checking fasteners, I would do it bare handed at times, My PC (plane captain) would remind me put your gloves on. So the aircraft would weather quite quickly even at home, much more so while on the boat. Keep in mind as stated the environment where the aircraft are operating out of, combat operations or just deployed for training.

    • Very informative Chuck - touching the airframe - paint-spray touch-ups etc etc. All help to making the aircraft look 'used'. Thanks to everyone for commenting.
      Seems I've created a monster!

  14. Viggens in photo.
    Guessing, no, betting they don't look like this before the next day's flight!
    Don't know what they did in this day's flight; but, aircraft DO get dirty from use. Crews clean most of that off after they land.
    Now in primitive conditions, like in forward bases, likely didn't have facilities to clean aircraft as they would in improved areas. Just get the mud off moving parts.

  15. Great topic. Great discussion with many good points.

Leave a Reply