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About Plastheniker

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  • Birthday 05/18/1951

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  • Scale I Build 1/24

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  • Location Hamburg/Germany
  • Full Name Jürgen Kowalski

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Plastheniker's Activity

  1. Plastheniker added a post in a topic 1950 Alfa Romeo Alfetta 158 - The Merit/Smer/Atlantis Kit From The Fifties And Some Extra Work   

    Thanks for all comments!

    Matt, indeed, I remember that the engine parts were rather good by comparison. When building this model, however, my motivation for building more than a curbside model was even less than usual because I knew that part of my following project would be a naked, superdetailed chassis of the very similar Alfetta 159.

    Mike, even if built very carefully there will always remain a big difference between the appearance of a 1/24 Smer model (as shown here in this topic) and the appearance of a 1/20 Casadio-Revival model (the very first link in this topic). The latter is much more detailed, and its larger scale makes corrections and a lot of further detailing possible.

    Tom, as mentioned I built new tyres, i. e. from styrene, and wires using the technique described in my wire wheel tutorial ( the second link).
    If you follow the first link there is a description in one of the last posts how I made the louvers of the Smer Alfetta. Since the time when I built the Smer Alfetta I found a technique with better results, but it is too time-consuming for such a large number of louvers.
  2. Plastheniker added a post in a topic BMW i8 - Revell   

    Dominik, a very attractive model of a good-looking (at least IMO) 1:1 car. This is obviously one of ROG's better kits.
  3. Plastheniker added a topic in Under Glass   

    1950 Alfa Romeo Alfetta 158 - The Merit/Smer/Atlantis Kit From The Fifties And Some Extra Work
    before I started my pair of 1/20 Casadio-Revival 1951 Alfettas Tipo 159A, shown here almost two years ago,
    I thought it would be a good idea to build the (in the nineties Smer) Alfetta 158 first. I hoped this would be the best way to learn the differences between the very similar 158 and 159. Moreover this would offer the opportunity to test some solutions on this inexpensive kit without risking a pricey Casadio-Revival kit.
    Considering that this ex-Merit kit was released in the mid-fifties and thus is one of the oldest kits still available one should not be surprised that the box content is rudimentary: only few and very simplified parts, while casting quality and fit are surprisingly good.
    In any case building an acceptable model requires major modification, a lot of time and some skills.
    I remember the following major problems:
    Except seat, steering wheel and a simple dashboard there are no interior details. Some scratch building and detailing is necessary for making it look like the 1:1 car interior.
    The louvers of the bonnet were hardly perceptible. Moreover the seam between lower and upper half of the body was directly at the lower ends of the lateral louvers which made it difficult to fill and sand the seam without damaging the louvers. Therefore I decided to replace all louvers on the model.
    As can be seen on this picture tyres and rims are one single part. The spokes of the wire wheels are simulated by clear discs with engraved lines. The tyres have no tread pattern. When I built my model 20 or 25 years ago there were no replacement parts so I had to make my own tyres and real wire wheels. I explained my technique of making various kinds of wire wheels here I am not sure if even today really suitable replacement parts could be found. One should never forget that any compromise regarding rim/tyres dimensions on an open-wheeled car is always very conspicious.
    The most difficult problem is the radiator grille since the kit hasn't any radiator grille at all. There is only a massive nose cone without any opening while the grille is reproduced by some faint raised lines as seen on the photo above. Since I built the model I never saw a successful attempt to make this "grille" look acceptable. This is the reason why pictures of finished models are taken so often from angles where the grille is not clearly visible. Covering the grille partially (as sometimes seen on the real Alfettas) doesn't improve anything. The necessary real model grille has to be convex in all directions, it should consist of 36 vertical bars with equal distances, and finally in 1/24 it is not much larger than a thumb nail. Building such a grille from scratch is a real challenge but without it a finished model will never look convincing.
    All in all IMO this kit is recommendable only for the most experienced modeler who is willing to tackle all problems with a lot of time and a lot of effort.

    • 15 replies
  4. Plastheniker added a post in a topic Ferrari 348TS and F355   

    Excellent craftmanship!
  5. Plastheniker added a post in a topic 2006 Camaro   

    Very clean and smooth paintwork.
    BTW looking at your very last picture makes me think that you have the same problem as me when resizing photos of orange or even more red cars. On full-size pictures the red areas of my models look okay but after resizing they seem to have dark spots all over.
    This phenomenon does not appear if I choose at least 130KB or even 200KB when resizing to usual 800 x 600.
  6. Plastheniker added a post in a topic 1965 Jaguar E-Type S1 4.2 OTS   

    Thanks for the further comments!

    Hakan, how about an alternative?

  7. Plastheniker added a post in a topic 1965 Jaguar E-Type S1 4.2 OTS   

    Thanks for the recent replies!

    No, I am sorry, there are no engine pictures.
    Of course this is a matter of taste, but I hate opening hoods, doors, and trunk lids because mostly (if not always) they are not completely flush and properly aligned or show varying gaps. Eliminating these problems completely and finally means to me fixing these parts, i. e. gluing them shut, all the more since I build only for my display case and nobody (including me) would ever open them. That is why I always build and detail only what could be visible if the model is turned upside down. Whenever I feel inclined to display an engine/gearbox I buy a second kit or superdetail a complete chassis as already shown on my Casadio GP models.
  8. Plastheniker added a post in a topic 1965 Jaguar E-Type S1 4.2 OTS   

    Thanks for all comments!
    No question, the E-Type is one of the very few timeless beauties, no matter if S1, S1½ or S2 and no matter if OTS or FHC. I am not so sure, however, about S3 and the 2+2. As so often when car designs were modified during production the very first design looks best. IMO S1 3.8 and S1 4.2 are the E-Type.

    Bruce, wire wheels were standard for the E-Type until 1971 when the S3 (=V12) model was introduced. At that time painted steel wheels with chromed rim embellishers or chromed steel wheels became standard, and chromed wires became optional.

    No Helmut, I built the model OOB. But I agree, the front stance is a bit lower than on pictures of the 1:1 car. Maybe the considerable weight of the numerous pewter parts concentrated there pressed the front slightly down over the years.

    Being honest I must admit that after such a long time I don't really remember how I proceeded here. But after turning the model upside down and considering my later proceeding when removing lateral seams of e. g. Casadio/Revival kits I am rather sure that first of all I glued the upper half and the lower half (=the floor pan) of the body together and reinforced the back of the seam. After thorough drying I scribed one groove right and a second groove left into the floorpan where the sides of the floor pan were still flat. Deeper scribing separated the flat floor pan from the upper body half with the now perfectly aligned lower sides. Then it was easy to assemble the model following the instruction sheet. If the reinforcement of the seam is strong enough nothing will crack when the sides of the body are bent outwards to re-join it with the floor pan during the final assembly.

    Michael, the colour was called 'Opalescent Silver Blue'.
    I wish I had a sister-in-law ...
  9. Plastheniker added a post in a topic Bedford Tipper Truck (Emhar 1/24)   

    Another stunning wheathering on an unusual and attractive model. Excellent!
  10. Plastheniker added a post in a topic RED Volvo and 51' Trailer   

    Excellent work as always. I wonder why Italeri's nice Volvo is so seldom shown.
  11. Plastheniker added a post in a topic PETERBILT 377 A/E   

    Excellent craftmanship and very good colour choice!
  12. Plastheniker added a topic in Under Glass   

    1965 Jaguar E-Type S1 4.2 OTS
    As already said in previous topics maybe 20 years ago Gunze Sangyo produced two versions of the same 1/24 car kits:
    The first line was rather expensive. These kits were labeled “Gunze Sangyo High Tech Model”. They included PE wire wheels (if the 1:1 vehicle had wires), a lot of other PE parts and many pewter parts not only for the engine and the chassis but also for the exterior chrome parts (f. e. bumpers, door handles).
    The second line were inexpensive all-plastic curbside versions of these “High Tech” kits. They came without pewter parts and without PE parts. The PE wires were replaced by plastic spoke wheels.
    I bought only one “High Tech Model”, namely this E-Type. If my memory serves me well it was the most expensive 1/24 plastic kit in those days, so my expectations were rather high.
    But as the proverb says strong light casts deep shadow:
    To this day this kit makes the most convincing 1/24 or 1/25 E-Type by far, and the PE wires are the best wires that I know.
    Some of the numerous PE parts made sense but the benefit of most of them was doubtful. The extensive use of pewter parts made no sense to me. Compared with plastic parts they have no additional benefit but work becomes very laborious. IMO a really annoying set-back was the use of pewter also for the exterior chrome parts (f. e. bumpers, door handles). It was extremely time-consuming giving them a smooth chrome-like appearance. Even worse my clear coat didn’t prevent these parts from darkening over the years. Fortunately I was still able to find a plastic version, so I replaced all those darkened exterior pewter parts of my model by nice chromed styrene parts.
    Taking the high price of the High Tech version into account, I was rather annoyed despite the outstanding wheels.
    Overall IMO the all-plastic kit would have been the better choice. With some improvements, particularly with better wires, it could have made a similarly nice model at a reasonable price.
    Nevertheless I found the finished model convincing, and it is still standing in the first row of my display cabinet.

    • 45 replies
  13. Plastheniker added a post in a topic 1953 Mack W-71 Integral Sleeper (AITM Cab) & Canvas Top Trailer (Scratch Built)   

    Thanks for the recent comments!
    My next model will be another scratch built German vintage heavy truck, namely the 1958 Mercedes LP 333, the first German twin-steer truck. Its odd appearance makes it very popular among German/European vintage truck enthusiasts. Everyone knows it by its nickname "Tausendfüssler" (= millipede). I hope that in a few weeks you will be interested again.
  14. Plastheniker added a post in a topic Diamond Reo Apollo 92   

    Brian, this is not only kit-assembling, this is true modeling. Great detailing brings this usually not very interesting kit to life. The colour is spot-on.
  15. Plastheniker added a post in a topic Freightliner FLC with Great Dane Reefer   

    Robert, this is one of the most beautiful rigs I saw during the past months. Excellent craftmanship and great colour choice. As so often simple colour schemes are the most effective on a model.