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Accurail Covered Hopper Accurail Covered Hopper...
Accurail makes a really nice covered hopper.  They are the best on the market when it comes to being prototypically correct and priced right.  This is a highly accurate model for Chessie's HC-47 class that numbered in the thousands.  Accurail makes a neat set called the "Fallen Flags" set, it includes one WM, one C&O, and one B&O in the original grey paint schemes.  It is a must have for a Chessie railroad.  The Chessie System Historical Society offered a special run of Chessie painted ones, and I had to have those too.  They are very nice.

Below are two pics of the real car we are modeling.  Both are in the standard Chessie scheme.  Both appear very new and probably just got repainted from the grey scheme to the Chessie one.  The blue stripe is supposed to be on all cars, but some shops left it off when they repainted them.

How to make an Accurail Covered Hopper:
1.  Assemble the kit as per instructions.
2.  If you are doing a Chessie painted hopper realize that it just got repainted in the Chessie Era and will most likely not be that dirty.  Look how clean the two above are.
3.  If you are doing a predecessor paint scheme, realize that it could have been in that paint for years.  Weather it appropriately.  Also the Accurail "Fallen Flags" kits don't come with the consolidated (2 black squares outlined in white) decals seen above on the right side of the cars.  Add these with spare decals.
4.  Covered hoppers tend to accumulate dirt in two places, on the underside and inside the ends (just to the left of the C&O in the upper right picture)
5.  Spray the hopper with an overall very light tan.  Concentrate on building up the dirt color in the ends and on the bottom.
6.  Lightly streak the sides with dark grey or black.  This simulates light grime.
7.  Lightly streak some white on the sides too.  This simulates spilled grain or flour.
8.  That is about it.  This is really just a good weathering project.  The kit right out of the box is so good you won't need to do much.  Enjoy mine below.