How black is black?

Starr, David <david.starr@...>

Started painting a Mantua Pacific this week. Soap and water wash followed
by a pickling bath, and then a coat of dark gray auto primer. The primer is
sticking well and is about the right shade, a very dark gray, looks black
under indoor lights. However, as primer's do, its VERY flat, not a hint of
shine anywhere. Most of the time this makes the locomotive look a bit
sooty and cindery and I am happy with the effect.
This locomotive has been slightly kitbashed to make it look like a B&M
P4. These were the pride of the B&M and kept in pretty good condition.
Looking through 6 or 8 photo's in my two B&M books, the P4's are always
clean, neatly painted and the paint shows a bit of gloss in every photo.
I'm beginning to think of sealing the decals on with a clear glossy topcoat
to get a little bit of shine into the paint. Has anyone tried this? Any
other finishing hints and kinks for steam loco paint that anyone cares to

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