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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I was just wondering what floquil rail road sage green was Paul Olsen refering to. I emailed him about it and he said it was a sage green, but floquil doesn't make a color called sage green. He said it was straight from the bottle. which one would best fit...there are a couple pale sage looking colors. What do you guys think. Link below. Those are all the floquil RR colors.


My conversation with Paul Olsen below

Hey Mr Olsen,

I am about to paint the polar lights refit enterprise (3 foot model). I was hoping to make this the refit instead of the A, however I was wondering what the strongback or engineering section was painted, was it pale green or blue? I have heard Ron Gress painted it but I didn't know the color he painted it. I know you probably have got many emails about this and have answered it somewhere. In addition, if you have any tips on airbrushes or anything (paints for the refit) it would be greatly appreciated. I also want to tell you want a fine job you did with that ship, no one will ever come close to that quality. Thanks so very much for your time.

-Nick Petersen


Hi Nick...

Thank you for your kind words, I really appreciate them.

The engineering section was painted with Floquil railroad modeler's
paint...it was a sage green and was a flat paint, and it was straight
from the bottle and not mixed...so if you could find a sage green that
that they make, that would be it.

The real trick would be the pearlescent paints I used...they had only
just come out, were horrendously expensive ($45 for a 4oz jar). The best
thing I can tell you about that is to put you onto a German lawyer who
is doing the same model, and with typical German thoroughness, has
researched this to death...he can help you regarding what is available
out there. I used four pearl colors that were transparent: a blue, a
gold, a red, and a green...they all flip-flopped to their complements
when the viewing angle changed. Beautiful. By varying the amount of
color, and the mixture of several colors on top of each other, I
obtained myriad colors and depth of color. Just spray lightly and keep
adding...you don't want any drips. The trick with airbrushing is to
spray ever so lightly, then keep on adding color. Cut yourself lots of
stencils (friskets) of all different rectangular and square shapes
(except for the curved shapes on the dish) and apply them in a random
order and keep building them up. What you are doing is giving the ship
scale by having it made from "panels" that we understand as such...like
the engine nacelles of a commercial jet and the body panels.ddddd

The man's name is Dariush and his email is: (ask me for it) I know
he would be more than happy to help you and probably give you more
information than you will ever need. He's a nice guy, though.

I used a Paasche A-1 airbrush...the Chevy of airbrushes, but it worked
fine. I still have it, though I now use Iwata's when I paint. Any
airbrush will do because you will using lacquer paints that self-clean
as the thinner is also the solvent.

Good luck! Be sure to contact Dariush...he will be the expert on the
Polar Lights model!

all the best,



His responce to some colors

Hi Nick....

Just briefly, the colors you directed me to are acrylic...you will never
get the sensational surface I achieved because acrylics will build up
and not smooth out they way a lacquer will. BUT, they will be more
robust. They certainly sound like the water-based equivalents of what I
used. The paints I used were lacquer-based, and lacquer melts into
itself providing you with an extraordinary surface. I don't know who
made the paints.

There is a company that make airbrush colors that lay down
beautifully...can't remember their name, but most art stores carry
them...they are for customizing cars and crash helmets. I don't know if
they make iridescents, though.

I used the same technique and paints for the the whole of the ship,
including the dish.

The green is made by Floquil...they are "Railroad Colors" or something
similar for model railroad enthusiasts...any good hobby shop will carry
them. They come in little tins or bottles and have their own solvent and
thinner. I'm living in England now, so can't access any local hobby
shops. I take it you are in America.

The ship was lit with small filament bulbs that are just a glass covered
filament with two wires sticking out the end. I can't remember if the
dish was lit with a round flourescent...but it makes sense. I think
there were more than 150 circuits, though.

When the filming was done, the model was to be sent to the air and space
museum in DC, but then the second film loomed, and Lucas repainted the
ship because he used green screen rather than the black screen we used.
Different technique. Sadly, my paintjob was lost forever.



246 Posts
So Paul's in the UK now. Interesting.

I think Paul uses the term 'sage green' in a rather generic fashion. There is clearly more than one colour involved in that area, and from personal experience using every single Tamiya green under the sun on my strongback, they all came out too dark and needed knocking back with white at the end. There doesn;t look like anything vaguely close out of the bottle on the Floquil sheet, you would have to mix it u.

76 Posts
I'd say try a bottle of the "Concrete" B-110082...looks like a grayish-green color that might be light enough, and/or "Canadian National Grey" B-110252. The difference between those two colors might look good enough to use one as the base color and the other for paneling - just my thoughts.

2,743 Posts
fiercegaming said:
Was the refit in the wrath of khan green in the engineering section? Was Pauls paint job still on it?

yes. all that ilm did to mr. olsen's paint job was add a lot of dullcoat on top of it to make it easier to matte into shots. (which also killed a lot of the pearlescence.)

also remember than many of the fx shots from st2 were shots from tmp reused.

609 Posts
Everyone - be careful using Testors' PDF color charts, they aren't always accurate. Always check the colors in person before buying. This is a warning from a Model Railroader (yes, I have too many hobbies - and not enough money).

Check with any local hobby shop that handles trains, most tend to carry Testor/Floquil/Pactra paints as well. The color samples on the display racks tend to be much more reliable than anything you see on your monitor at home.
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