The market place for custom printed lettering has shrunk in recent years. A couple key suppliers exited leaving little to choose from. So I thought. I was reading a post on Face Book that talked about mulit-color decals being printed by a company in Canada. The company is Precision Design Company. They offer a number of mediums for printing ranging from ALPS and high resolution laser printing using an OKI printer that will print white of clear film
I decided to try the company and had a couple sets of gondola decals printed for use on a planned kitbash of a Glacier Park Models GS gondola kit. The company is very quick in their turnaround on computer generated artwork. I was fortunate to have some art generated for the desired Northern Pacific steel gondola. The art was done with Adobe Illustrator and is extremely accurate. Like most of the new generation of decal art it was traced from actual photographs avoid the old school method of relying on printers font.
The artwork was turned into decals within about three days and mailed via a US Post Office so delivering was very prompt. These folks are super to deal with. So what did the it look like when done?
Here is a shot of the smallest lettering which is approximately one inch high. This is extremely fine resolution. As you can see, the printing is opaque and smooth. It is as good as screen printing. Not as sharp as Cartograf in Italy. Oh yes, the set up cost is only $20 US and cost per sheet depends upon if you want a full or partial sheet or sheets. The film was applied to a surface painted with Tru-Color lacquer. I didn’t apply setting solution other than to test to see that the lettering didn’t smear.
The above page was done by Dean O’Neill as part of a presentation to Northern Pacific Railroad Historical Association (NPRHA) members as a modeling aid. Rick Leach and Dean as prepared a a couple of Power Point presentations to educate members on the correct lettering and placement for a range of Northern Pacific freight equipment.
Believe it or not, There are a lot of similarties with the NP car and SP drop bottom gondola. I am getting ahead of myself on a future build.