Weathering Vehicles.

My basic routine is:-

Paint your vehicle and admire your handywork for a few minutes, since you are about to muck up that nice paint job you spent so long on.

Wear. Lightly drybrush the vehicle with a silver colour to pick out edges and rivet heads etc. Remember that the front of a vehicle will impact branches and stuff, so there will be more wear here and possibly horizontal scratches on the sides.

Black Ink your model. With figures black inking is often one of the final stages that I do, but with vehicles it comes earlier in the process, before you add the dust and mud.

Dust. Vehicles moving cross country will throw up lots of dust. Most of this will settle on the top of features and the vehicle, although a little will adhere to the sides. For this stage I lightly drybrush the upper surfaces and the sides with GW Bleached Bone.

Mud. Once the dust (and more importantly your drybrush) is dry, start on the mud. Mud will obviously be all over the tracks and running gear. It will also be splattered around these areas and up the lower parts of the vehicle. I aim to keep the mud about a third of the way up the vehicle, rising to a little higher towards the rear and on the back.

Drybrush first with GW Bestial Brown. Let that dry, then drybrush over this with GW Snakebite Leather. Then brush over this with GW Bleached Bone. These three colours are quite good for mud, since they are distinct from any colours I'm likely to use for cammo schemes.

A friend of mine swears by codex grey for weathering, so I tried this on the Grey Knight Pilgrim between the Snakebite and Bleached Bone stage. I'm not too certain I like this, but trying it on a Silver vehicle might not have been the best choice. It may work much better on other vehicles. Dwarf flesh has also been suggested for small patches of semi-dry mud.
Humbrol Acrylic No.29 Dark Earth is another useful colour and works well with Tamiya Flat Earth and GW Kommando Khaki. For a more three-dimensional mud effect try the TP-Papier-mâché technique.

Here are a selection of vehicles, camouflaged for a range of environments but all weathered using the same scheme described above.

Rhino

Rhino

Owner: Uncle Phil

Razorback

Razorback

Owner: Uncle Phil

Old Boy Predator

Old Boy Predator

Owner: Uncle Phil

Vindicator

Vindicator

Owner: Uncle Phil

Vindicator

Vindicator

Owner: Uncle Phil

Grey Knight Pilgrim

Grey Knight Pilgrim

Owner: Uncle Phil


Article on "Weathering Heresies"

The factors that contribute to weathering have a progression. Loose dust and mud is likely to cover more permanent marks such as chipping or rain streaks. When modelling these some effects need to be applied later than others.

On trick I have discovered is to pay attention to brush strokes when applying your base coat. You can produce some of the effects of rain streaking by using vertical strokes on the vertical parts of the vehicle and dappling on the horizontal areas. If your base coat is thin then some of the undercoat will show through. Use this to your advantage by painting in these bits with an alternate shade of basecoat. Damage to paint on a vehicle often does not expose bare metal. Instead it reveals areas of older paint that may be lighter or darker.

Another useful way to produce rain streaking is to make a very thin mix of Tamiya Buff. Paint vertical streaks on the sides, dapples on the roof etc. This will tend to look clear as it goes on but the colour comes out as the paint dries. I used this effect on the Space Marine Vehicle below. Grime at the exhausts was made with Vallejo Smoke. I found the best way to apply this was paint a small amount on and then streak it with a larger clean brush.

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