Recently, the fine folks at T-Gauge UK has begun offering some super-fine gray ballast. I purchased some with the idea of testing it out on my roadbed. The uncured rubber roadbed is pretty sticky, and the ballast can be pressed into it easily. My test turned out very positive. I will definitely be using this technique. First, the ballast gives the roadbed a nice granular, rock-like look. Second, it does not need as much painting/tinting to look better.
The ballast is simply sifted on with a folded piece of paper--and tamped with a finger.
The shoulders are also tamped with a finger and with the sanding stick--also as in the original technique. Then the excess is vacuumed up. Finally, the whole kit and kaboodle is sprayed with some Testors dullcote (don't forget to clean the railheads). Very simple--very easy. The picture speaks for itself.
And another view:
Note the nice texture--this is what was missing on the original technique. Finally, here's one with the 50' boxcar--which incidentally has a powered chassis installed.