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Reference Photos for Revell's New '49 Mercury Woody Wagon


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#21 Ron Hamilton

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Posted 17 December 2013 - 07:54 PM

This is what I want to do with one of mine when I get it.

 

DA0913-165112_8.jpg?lastmod=081613210017



#22 peekay

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 01:16 AM

The roofline on the front, above the windshield, looks so homely on these carsnever really paid attention to it before - like a bald, sad guy head.

I can see that too, now you mention it.

#23 mrknowetall

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 04:36 AM

This is what I want to do with one of mine when I get it.

 

DA0913-165112_8.jpg?lastmod=081613210017

Hmmmm.  That'll be a challenge.  Look at the doors on The Merc woody, and at the doors on your Ford posted above. 



#24 Brett Barrow

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 05:21 AM

This is what I want to do with one of mine when I get it.

 

DA0913-165112_8.jpg?lastmod=081613210017

 

 

Hmmmm.  That'll be a challenge.  Look at the doors on The Merc woody, and at the doors on your Ford posted above. 

 

Yeah, the 49 Mercurys were a bit bigger than the Fords. Wheelbase is 118" for the Merc and 114" for the Ford. A Merc is about 5" wider. Looks like the roof might be the same, though. 


Edited by Brett Barrow, 18 December 2013 - 05:22 AM.


#25 Edsel-Dan

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 01:49 PM

I don't have a separate video card in this DELL.

And not sure how to color test the monitor.

 

Oh well.



#26 horsepower

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 02:27 PM

Personally I REALLY like the red one with the subtle top chop & one piece quarter glass.



#27 Ron Hamilton

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 03:00 PM

 

 

 

Yeah, the 49 Mercurys were a bit bigger than the Fords. Wheelbase is 118" for the Merc and 114" for the Ford. A Merc is about 5" wider. Looks like the roof might be the same, though. 

I did not say it was going to be easy.



#28 lordairgtar

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Posted 18 December 2013 - 07:33 PM

I did not say it was going to be easy.

The Ford does not have the complex curving of the door shape the Merc has. That's gonna be a toughy to cut and splice 



#29 plowboy

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 07:15 AM

If I do buy this kit, I'm going to fill in the recesses on the body and make a sheet metal wagon out of it. I never have understood why they made bodies out of wood. :blink:



#30 Art Anderson

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 12:40 PM

If I do buy this kit, I'm going to fill in the recesses on the body and make a sheet metal wagon out of it. I never have understood why they made bodies out of wood. :blink:

Station wagons started out as horse-drawn "depot hacks", used by resorts and hotels to pick up guests at railroad stations (the forerunner of today's hotel and resort shuttles going to and from airports).  As automobiles replaced horses, this body style continued, the paneled wood construction being very much the technology available in the years prior to WW-1 and beyond, just as were so-called steel auto bodies which were mostly wood construction, albeit overlaid with sheet steel panels.  

 

Wooden station wagon bodies continued through the 1940's more out of tradition than anything else.  Chevrolet is generally credited with producing the first steel bodied station wagon in 1935--the first Chevrolet Suburban, but even that body has a fair amount of structural wood in it although it had no exposed wooden surfaces.  Willys-Overland actually produced the first truly all steel station wagon by the simple expedient of putting rear quarter windows and a back seat (with their "Station Sedan" version having a single-person "third seat" set sideways behind the full rear bench seat.  Of the Big Three, Plymouth introduced their first steel station wagon for 1949, as a mid-year release, having started that first postwar model year with a couple hundred wooden bodied station wagons (the wooden bodies were produced by US Body & Forge of Frankfort, IN--just 20 miles SE of me).

 

For 1949, Ford introduced their last "woodies", with a body shell shared by both Ford and Mercury (only the doors differed, due to the lower front fender line on Mercury's.  This body is structurally all steel, the wooden panels being molded plywood with an outer layer of mahogany veneer.  The blond wood framing was also molded, as opposed to being cut, milled to shape with "dovetail" joints as was done on all previous Ford station wagons going back to 1929.  The hard maple was cut into thin strips, which were then "stacked", with glue in between the layers and then pressed to shape under steam heat.   The resulting molded wood parts were then milled to their softer rounded contours.  The "framing" was bolted to the molded plywood panels and those assemblies bolted into the steel body framework.  For 1951 Ford had planned to replace the molded plywood panel inserts with sheet steel, but steel shortages due to the Korean Conflict along with a massive military buildup at the outset of the "Cold War", the molded plywood panels were continued, although late in the 1950 model year steel tailgates replaced the wooden version used up to that time.

 

For more about woodies in general and Ford woodie station wagons in particular, the Lorin Sorenson book "The Fabulous Ford Woody" is fascinating--loaded with stories about how those wagons came to be, how they evolved; with lots of photographs of woodie station wagon design, engineering and production.

 

Art



#31 mrknowetall

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Posted 22 December 2013 - 03:57 PM

Station wagons started out as horse-drawn "depot hacks", used by resorts and hotels to pick up guests at railroad stations (the forerunner of today's hotel and resort shuttles going to and from airports).  As automobiles replaced horses, this body style continued, the paneled wood construction being very much the technology available in the years prior to WW-1 and beyond, just as were so-called steel auto bodies which were mostly wood construction, albeit overlaid with sheet steel panels.  

 

Wooden station wagon bodies continued through the 1940's more out of tradition than anything else.  Chevrolet is generally credited with producing the first steel bodied station wagon in 1935--the first Chevrolet Suburban, but even that body has a fair amount of structural wood in it although it had no exposed wooden surfaces.  Willys-Overland actually produced the first truly all steel station wagon by the simple expedient of putting rear quarter windows and a back seat (with their "Station Sedan" version having a single-person "third seat" set sideways behind the full rear bench seat.  Of the Big Three, Plymouth introduced their first steel station wagon for 1949, as a mid-year release, having started that first postwar model year with a couple hundred wooden bodied station wagons (the wooden bodies were produced by US Body & Forge of Frankfort, IN--just 20 miles SE of me).

 

For 1949, Ford introduced their last "woodies", with a body shell shared by both Ford and Mercury (only the doors differed, due to the lower front fender line on Mercury's.  This body is structurally all steel, the wooden panels being molded plywood with an outer layer of mahogany veneer.  The blond wood framing was also molded, as opposed to being cut, milled to shape with "dovetail" joints as was done on all previous Ford station wagons going back to 1929.  The hard maple was cut into thin strips, which were then "stacked", with glue in between the layers and then pressed to shape under steam heat.   The resulting molded wood parts were then milled to their softer rounded contours.  The "framing" was bolted to the molded plywood panels and those assemblies bolted into the steel body framework.  For 1951 Ford had planned to replace the molded plywood panel inserts with sheet steel, but steel shortages due to the Korean Conflict along with a massive military buildup at the outset of the "Cold War", the molded plywood panels were continued, although late in the 1950 model year steel tailgates replaced the wooden version used up to that time.

 

For more about woodies in general and Ford woodie station wagons in particular, the Lorin Sorenson book "The Fabulous Ford Woody" is fascinating--loaded with stories about how those wagons came to be, how they evolved; with lots of photographs of woodie station wagon design, engineering and production.

 

Art

 

I just bought the Loren Sorenson book, and Art's right!  It's a fabulous book, loaded with great woody information.  Also expect to pay more for it, since it's out of print.   



#32 bigphoto

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Posted 01 January 2014 - 01:20 PM

IMHO my caveats about the kit is lack of wood grain texture and no flattie. A couple of surf boards or early camping goodies would be nice too. Other than that it is a nice kit my sample had fair amount of flash on the new parts but it is easy to clean up.



#33 Brett Barrow

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 05:42 AM

IMHO my caveats about the kit is lack of wood grain texture and no flattie. A couple of surf boards or early camping goodies would be nice too. Other than that it is a nice kit my sample had fair amount of flash on the new parts but it is easy to clean up.

Please, no woodgrain texture on woodies!!!  The wood is buried under about 30 coats of varnish on the real things and is just as smooth and shiny as the metal.  Plus maple (the light-colored wood used for the framework)  doesn't have a discernible grain as it is in 1:1 scale, much less in 25th.  The only 1:1 woodies I've seen with visible grain have been restored using oak for the frames, and that's not what the originals used. 

 

49_Mercury_WoodyWagon_DV-07-BH_05.jpg



#34 mrknowetall

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 07:02 AM

Please, no woodgrain texture on woodies!!!  The wood is buried under about 30 coats of varnish on the real things and is just as smooth and shiny as the metal.  Plus maple (the light-colored wood used for the framework)  doesn't have a discernible grain as it is in 1:1 scale, much less in 25th.  The only 1:1 woodies I've seen with visible grain have been restored using oak for the frames, and that's not what the originals used. 

 

49_Mercury_WoodyWagon_DV-07-BH_05.jpg

 

Is that oak or maple in your posted pic? 



#35 Art Anderson

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 07:47 AM

 

Is that oak or maple in your posted pic? 

 

That's either maple or birch (another hardwood with a very fine grain pattern).  FWIW, oak was never used by Ford (or for that matter any of the other makers of wooden station wagon bodies, due to its weight and oak's tendency to break easily when cut into thin, small sections).   As produced, all the wood "framing" on the last series of Ford and Mercury woodie station wagon bodies (both marques used exactly the same station wagon body, only the front doors being different due to the styling differences in the front clip) was made by bansawing hard maple into thin, flat strips which were then coated with glue, and placed into molding dies and pressed into the curves needed for the shape of the body shell, under heat to cure the glue quickly.  After removal from the molding press, each piece was then milled slightly to give the rounded edges, and hand-fitted to the molded plywood panels, then sanded and varnished.

 

The plywood panels were made in the same manner as the framing--thin layers of birch, with an outer layer of Honduran mahogany were coated with glue, then placed in a molding press which formed them into the curved body side panels you see on that car.  This was not a new technology for Ford--their Iron Mountain MIchigan factory produced hundreds of wooden gliders along with other molded plywood components for the US war effort during WW-II, and molded plywood furniture was very modern, very popular from the late 30's until at least the early 1970's (ever sit at a grade school desk in those years?  Those molded seats were made by the very same process!)

 

The confusion can come very easily from the efforts of early restorers of these, and other woody station wagons, as furniture-grade hard maple in sections large enough for milling such dramatically curved parts isn't easy to come by, where many woodworking shops can access oak pretty easily.

 

Why were these wooden panels so hard to come by as restoration parts years ago?  For starters, those panels are absolutely not structural:  Once made, they are simply that, panels, and were fastened into recessed areas of what was otherwise essentially an all-steel station wagon body, where from 1929-48, Ford station wagon bodies were entirely wooden construction, built using hard maple structural frame work glued together with common cabinet-working dovetail and mortise & tenon joinery, then attached to flat plywood panels by means of plated "jail bolts".

 

A note about the finished look:  Maple, being a very fine, close-grained wood, does not have the very prominent "light-dark", closed-open rings that oak and other larger hardwood trees have.  Therefore, especially when molded as these '49-'51 Ford Motor Company bodies were, even in the few areas (at the exposed ends of some of the framing sections) where the end-grain is visible, there isn't all that much variety in color to be visible--certainly almost none along the flatter surfaces.  Another confusion that can come from looking at the picture Bill Barrett has put up here comes from the "swirling" grain on some areas of the framing.  By the time these bodies were built, the parts had to be made as described, simply due to the depletion of furniture-grade maple in any serious quantities from the vast forest holdings of Ford Motor Company in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, resulting in some of the less desireable grain patterns that can be seen on these wagons.

 

The color of the wood panels is also darkened/enhanced by the use of spar varnish, which isn't water-clear, but rather has an amber hue to it.  Several coats of varnish were applied at the factory, and the owner's manual recommended a light sanding and re-coating with fresh spar varnish every year.

 

Art



#36 Brett Barrow

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 08:19 AM

mrknowetall: "Is that oak or maple in your posted pic?"

Almost positive it's maple.  Maple has very distinct figuring when it's quarter-sawn.  Might be birch, too, as Art said. Birch usually has a much wider and more wavy figure than maple, which can be very tight and straight (known as "tiger maple")  

 

This is an oak-framed woody, you can see the visible grain on the tailgate, it's not glass-smooth like maple or birch.  I don't know if oak was original on this Buick, but I know it wasn't on the Ford/Mercury.  It probably is, since it's so thick and sculptured, it's been cut from one solid piece of oak, not the laminated strips on the Merc. 

 

1952_Buick_Super_Estate_Wagon_For_Sale_W


Edited by Brett Barrow, 02 January 2014 - 08:49 AM.


#37 Brett Barrow

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 09:30 AM

 looking at the picture Bill Barrett has put up....

"Bill Barrett"??!?!   I take it that's supposed to be me?  Did Don Banes tell you to do that?   He gets a kick out of always calling me by the wrong name, usually "Bart"...  

 

Even on this ratty woody that Dave Lindsay posted earlier in the tread, one can see that there's no visible texture, except where the plies are delaminating.  I'd love to see someone attempt this weathered look on one of these.  I'm thinking about it, but I doubt I have the skill to pull it off...

 

6170605266_1b991ec8bd_b.jpg



#38 mrknowetall

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Posted 02 January 2014 - 09:34 AM

"Bill Barrett"??!?!   I take it that's supposed to be me?  Did Don Banes tell you to do that?   He gets a kick out of always calling me by the wrong name, usually "Bart"...  

 

Even on this ratty woody that Dave Lindsay posted earlier in the tread, one can see that there's no visible texture, except where the plies are delaminating.  I'd love to see someone attempt this weathered look on one of these.  I'm thinking about it, but I doubt I have the skill to pull it off...

 

6170605266_1b991ec8bd_b.jpg

 

Wasn't me that put Art up to that, Bart. 



#39 blubaja

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Posted 03 January 2014 - 07:59 AM

"Bill Barrett"??!?!   I take it that's supposed to be me?  Did Don Banes tell you to do that?   He gets a kick out of always calling me by the wrong name, usually "Bart"...  

 

Even on this ratty woody that Dave Lindsay posted earlier in the tread, one can see that there's no visible texture, except where the plies are delaminating.  I'd love to see someone attempt this weathered look on one of these.  I'm thinking about it, but I doubt I have the skill to pull it off...

 

6170605266_1b991ec8bd_b.jpg

I was thinking on working with the crackle finish nail polish to start.



#40 gman

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Posted 04 January 2014 - 04:53 PM

http://www.schmitt.c...age.asp?ID=4831

 

^^ There are some nice high-res photos that should help in building this kit, including stock engine pics for those willing to swap in a flathead from the Revell 50 Ford pickup to make the kit more factory stock.