Steam locomotive number board decaling

Discussion in 'HO Scale Model Trains' started by GN.2-6-8-0, Jul 15, 2007.

  1. GN.2-6-8-0

    GN.2-6-8-0 Member

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    O.k folks lets hear your best procedures for putting those itsy-bitsy numbers on the number boards of your favorite H.O steamer
    X2023 was my lastest and i thank the lord for my optivisorsign1
    Using exacto knife' tweezers and lots & lots of patience,only problem is a bit of a shaky hand 'oh and don;t forget your favorite decal setting solution.
  2. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Your technique sounds about the same as mine. I have quite a collection of decals (mostly leftovers from other jobs) that often have just the style or size of numbers that I need to fit a particular type of numberboard. Don't overlook using those intended for diesels, either. If you're into lights on your locos (I'm not), there are numberboard decals available with clear numbers on a black background, too.
    Here are a few of mine - I don't recall what the particular source was for the numerals.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Don't forget them for diesels with separate numberboards:
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    And different styles on some steamers:
    [​IMG]

    Not too easy to read in this picture, but I also put numbers on the back-up light numberboards, on the tenders.
    [​IMG]

    Wayne
  3. GN.2-6-8-0

    GN.2-6-8-0 Member

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    Those look great Wayne,and hats off to you for getting the numbers on the headlight/back up lights...their even smaller , lol
  4. woodone

    woodone Member

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    I like the ones on the headlights. ( they are very small)
    How do you get the numbers on when you have to use individual numerals to make up a number?
    I need some numbers for light boards on N scale.
    Numerals are so small it is hard to get them on,when u need four digets to make up a number. A number 10 optivisor? sign1
  5. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    It usually gives you better spacing if you apply the digits one-at-a-time, anyway. Most of the number boards that I use are sectioned between the digits with a raised ridge, so separate numerals are the only way to go. I use an Optivisor nowadays, and for really small stuff, a jeweller's loupe. While I don't often do it, occasionally I'll replace individual digits in the dimensional data of freight cars, especially when trying to match a photo of the prototype. The car below is an example, and although my camera can't pick up the detail, I also used the same "cut and splice" technique for the test data on the air reservoir.
    [​IMG]

    Wayne
  6. MasonJar

    MasonJar It's not rocket surgery

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    Holy :eek:!! You decalled the air reservoir. Now that's attention to detail!

    Two :thumb: :thumb:, plus a little :razz: and :inw:

    sign1

    Andrew
  7. GN.2-6-8-0

    GN.2-6-8-0 Member

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    Jeweler's loupe.....theres a thought :twisted: will look into getting one of those.
  8. doctorwayne

    doctorwayne Active Member

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    Yeah, but it was only those two TH&B hoppers. It's fun once in a while to use prototype photos to detail a model, but the job sometimes takes on a life of its own. A guy that used to frequent the hobby shop in Burlington had done an article in RMC about building TH&B U-channel hoppers and had done an excellent job. However, I felt that he had chosen the wrong car to start with, making more work for himself than necessary by using the Accurail USRA steel hopper. Stewart makes a very nice model of the U-channel hopper, so I decided to build a couple. When they were done, I took one out to the store, and left if for the fellow to see, next time he came in. The word was that he thought that I had done a nice job, but that the grabirons on the ends were wrong. (He was right - they didn't line up with those on the sides). I took the car home, and redid both cars, so they're now correct. Usually, I'm not that fussy, but it was nice to be able to get them as accurate as possible.

    Wayne
  9. nkp174

    nkp174 Active Member

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    I find a nice exacto blade as my preferred approach to applying small decals. When I lettered the illuminated number boards and front number plate on my Rivarossi 765, I sent it for a run before I finished sealing the decals...it came around and had lost digits! I'd never had any problem at all like that with decals. It still makes me mad...and that was 8 years ago.

    I really like to have the finer decals on my favorite cars as Wayne mentioned. My HOn3 Grandt line cars have all sorts of decals that I can't read.