model train set on track

Get Real

e*Train Issue: Jul 2003   |   Posted in:

by Bob Mintz

Jeb Kriigel has a passion for weathering and super detailing. His specialty is making things look like they have been exposed to the stress and strain of both Mother Nature and father time. In real life the buildings, bridges, and railroad structures are rarely freshly painted and clean. Maintenance is just too costly for the railroads!

Railroad grime, dust, rust and smoke all take their toll on everything near the railroad line and so it is with the items on which Jeb works his magic. Weathering is an attitude. His favorite color is flat black. When he has applied the base coat, he mixes a special brew of alcohol and life-like colors to duplicate the natural look of weathering. Sometimes he works with an airbrush. At other times he will use a spray bottle or even a brush.

Jeb’s weathering comes in three flavors: light, medium, and heavy. Some projects take days and even weeks to complete and get the “right look”. Sometimes Jeb even leaves a building or a bridge outside to let Mother Nature also have a shot at it. She has never disappointed him! Father time also has a hand in the projects, but Jeb likes to push him along whenever he can to produce the right effect. When it looks just right it is done! If it doesn’t look right, it is redone! By working this way Jeb is able to create some very unique and unusual buildings, bridges, and structures that add an extra special touch of realism.

He tells me that his customers are always pleased. He would be happy to talk to you about kitbashing, weathering or detailing that special piece on your layout!

Get Real Productions is the name of the company that Jeb and Nancy Kriigel formed to produce the most realistic photos of model trains available! They compose scenes, build backdrops, add details, place the loco and take the photos! “Our photos make model trains look real!”

They specialize in custom work for individual hobbyists, manufacturers and private collectors. Their prints are sold to the public matted and framed, unframed, and in the postcard format. They also have provided custom greeting cards and calendars.

Because they build and weather buildings for use on our layouts and in our photos, it was a natural move to develop the building side of the business when Jeb became unemployed due to a corporate downsizing last fall.

They custom build to a customer’s specifications. They build and weather kits. They scratchbuild. They kitbash. I am told that no job is too large and no job is too small. Building from the point of view of the camera’s eye makes their structures look ultra realistic! All of their buildings, structures, and bridges could be used in your photography as backdrops…many have!

Examples of Jeb’s work can be seen from his table displayed at York this past Spring.

From the gigantic Union Station to the massive lift bridge, coaling towers, water towers, stations, switch towers are all examples of his work. “This represents my passion. Each structure is unique and is created to be a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. I always give my customers more than they ask for. My customers are my friends! It is that simple!”

Offering a fair price and an honest turn-a-round time is his specialty.

Jeb can be reached at 434-589-2660 or email: [email protected].