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Steel and concrete...

Paul Robertson



And so my baptism into the dark arts of scenery painting has continued on and off over the last few days. It has been focused on the Linkspan structure and trying to get the concrete to look like concrete and the steel bits to look like steel! Easier said than done when all I have is some cheap acrylics bought off the Internet and just need to keep on mixing and reapplying layers of paint until I'm finally happy. 


One thing I have learnt is that you can never have too much white paint as a basis for any colour. My original attempts to create greys of any hue came out far too dark to match any prototype so I had to cut back with the black, add lots more white and just a hint of other colours to give a correct tint. The first colour tried was for the steel structure of the bridges. 



(painting the steel) 


The old Dover admiralty pier had a light blue grey type paint so I experiment with the blue black and white I had until I landed on a hue I was satisfied with although it didn't strictly match prototype. Another issue I came across when mixing your own colours was running out of the mix half way through and then trying to make up another batch to try and match the last one. Next to impossible with my rough and ready mixing methods so just had to make up a bigger batch and paint it all again! 



(final coat applied to the steels) 


Having done this all the blue had to be carefully masked to allow me to paint a concrete colour where necessary. The first concrete colour was way to light and pink for my liking (I had added red and yellow to represent aggregate colours to the white with a dash of black). So a bit more black in the mix and another coat later I was pretty happy with the colour. The concrete colour was required for the upper viaduct bridge and the kerbs on the linkspan bridge sections. 



(bridges masked and concrete colour going on) 


With the concrete on the final colour to be painted on was on the upper linkspan bridge for the control cabin and the hydraulic steel ramp that lowers onto the vehicle deck. I wanted the control cabin to look like a 1980s grp kiosk you might find on a platform in BR days so a nice letter box red was chosen. The ramps seemed pretty grotty and grubby so dark grey was chosen. The Dover Linkspan ramps have box junctions painted onto them so I thought I'd follow suit. They are also made up of lots of individuals sections that all come down onto the deck to form the ramp so some black lining pen was used to mark that out. 



(final result with the dark blue meant to represent the rear door of the nord pas de calais raised for the ramp to rest on) 


And some final shots of it all in place






Plenty more detailing to be done but the basic colour scheme is coming together now


Thanks for reading



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