I've dabbled in this hobby for a long time but it looks like now I can get seriously into it, meaning build a layout. So I have a few questions.
I have several Athearn freight cars, box and 34' coal hoppers. I like the kits but am not happy with the shine on the delrin and the wheels. I've already painted the weights because you can see them on the coal hoppers. I have the underframes, trucks and wheels sets drying after a thorogh cleaning.
Couple questions here:
Does Delrin take paint well?
What about the trucks, any problem getting paint on the inside? I have a can of black primer that dries to a nice flat, not quite black that I've used on other models as is. Should I tape and protect the inside, or maybe just hand paint them. I feel the black will be hard to cover with a brush as it may be difficult to tell where the wet paint is and where bare plastic is.
What about the wheels? I was going to just shoot them, too and then polish the needle bearing before snapping them back in. Is there a better way to change the appearance from glossy to mat?
I also just bought a Genesis Mikado. Wow! A real improvement over what I'd had before. Quite and runs real good at slow speeds though I'm not sure if the top end is as fast as possible, but than again these were for slow freights, right?
Anyway it runs and looks good except for the driving wheels and the push rods. I'm new at this aspect but I'm pretty sure prototype steam engines didn't have bright silver wheels and pushrods.
How can I darken the wheels without affecting electrical conductivity?
Also this thing has a DCC wire. I've already decided against DCC at least for the foreseeable future. So can I use it for a sound card? Could some kind and knowledgeable person give me a rundown on sound options today. I'd ask the guy at the shop but I know he wants me to buy what he sells, which may be the best or not. Some unbiased advice going in would be nice.
How about add on smoke units?