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About ibj40

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    Jim Forte

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  1. One other area that needed attention was the trunk and the fuel cell filler and vent. This is the top of the fuel cell from the Hamilton donor in the trunk of the Belvedere. Clearly I need to get from the end of the black hose through the trunk and left rear fender. Initially I considered just a scabbed piece to close the internal gap. That would be a cop-out, as I have this nicely defined port on the left rear fender. So I drilled all the way through the bodywork, and the trunk. Created a longer transition piece out of thin wall aluminum tubing that picks up the black plastic hose to the fuel cell. And then finished it all out with a vent tube from the top of the fuel cell, routed to an outlet in the left rear taillight.
  2. Classic problem with working in diecast. Sometimes you have to squint your eyes and pretend. Did some more tonight, will post up some weekend shots later. Thanks!
  3. It is hot down here in Texas these days, which restricts my working from my non-air conditioned garage workspace, but I've been trying to make progress when I can. One of the issues I had pointed out previously is the rake of the body on the chassis, and how it didn't appear right. Here's where we were and clearly the rear of the car is way too low. This is what a real one looked like on the track. You can clearly see that back in the day, these cars used rear leaf springs, and one of the ways to change the rear ride height was to install a spring shackle in the rear where it mounted to the chassis. With multiple holes in the aftermarket shackle, you could adjust the ride height to suit the track. The other way (and frequently used in combination with the shackle) was a lowering block between the leaf spring and the axle mounting point. Well with diecast, and how the diecast and plastic pieces are created, neither of these methods is available. For this chassis, the rear axle assembly is firmly mounted to the chassis with two screws. So what I have done is built spacers out of brass and aluminum tubing to replicate the effect of lowering blocks. Which required acquiring longer screws than those which located the rear axle in the original location. I experimented with a couple of different heights of my "lowering" blocks, but think I may have nailed the rake pretty closely (although I'm still not fully comfortable with the front). You can see, however, that now the rear of the model's leaf springs don't match up with the model's chassis. To cure that, I will actually build my own "shackles" out of Styrene rectangular rod, and drill down through them all to make it all fit.
  4. Been a while since I visited this build, but acquired some parts, and thought I'd at least update my pictures. My good friend, Mike Kotwick (Swede70 on many of the boards) is a master at resin casting, and he took an idea I had about extending GMP Trans Am Camaro front spoilers to heart, and nailed it. Along the way I also acquired a "fibreglass" high hood scoop hood, which will be perfect for feeding more air to those hungry Webers perched on top of the Big Block Chevy. This one will probably go back on the shelf until after the Petty Belvedere is done, but though an update might be appropriate. Enjoy! Old stock front spoiler for comparison. And now the updates.
  5. Okay, well on to Plan B. One of my favorite substances for modeling is JB Weld, just like Frank's Red Hot Sauce, I'd put that s**t on anything. So, with these gaps to fill. Over the weekend, I finally produced this. And don't worry, I had the rollcage bars wrapped in blue masking tape, so this is the end product. Had the dashboard in and out so many times I was dreaming about it. There are about four layers of JB Weld, as I started with a layer on the top, took the dashboard out, lay in a layer on the bottom, and then did that same process one more time. Along the way, I filled in the holes in the hood where the original hood scoops on the donor model were, as well as where the hood ornament was. Threw some primer at the hood just to see how I did. Still a little rough, but when I send the body off to the guy who strips the paint for me, it should clean up just fine with a little bit of sanding. Roughed in the front and rear bumpers, just to get an idea about the final. I'm pretty pleased with where we are, and just need a few more details taken care of.
  6. Are the golf club bags removable?
  7. Update on the dashboard project. Dr. Dremel and I may have been a little too enthusiastic in search of a cure for clearance, so a little bit of cosmetic surgery is called for. Got out my trusty tube of body filler, and some blue masking tape. First pass taught me some lessons, so I ground away most of what I didn't like, and went at it again. This is currently curing on my workbench, not sure I will be able to do much for a few days. Brass angle arrived yesterday, as well, and still thinking about the means to duplicate the two plastic angle pieces.
  8. So, I think I had a successful date with Dr. Dremel last night, although it was a lot more involved than simply grinding away some plastic. First, I needed to take everything apart, starting with the dash, so that I could also remove the windshield (so as not to scratch it) to mark the apparent obstruction. And then put the dashboard back in and get a reference line drawn. And then grind away, and refit. There were several iterations, each one requiring the dashboard to be removed and then reinstalled. And then full reassembly. From the side Before Surgery Post Surgery And while working with the body last night, I decided that the plastic angle I used to replace the front bulkhead isn't substantial enough, so I ordered some brass angle to replace it. These two pieces will be recut from the brass angle and then re-primed.
  9. Made some progress over the weekend. Let's start with the firewall. Here are the two pieces, one from the Belvedere, the other from the Superbird. The issue is to fill in the gaps and make them fit the other model, where appropriate. The Belvedere firewall interfered with the Superbird chassis, so I had to trim some at the bottom. I use a nipper that we used back when I was building race cars, as it has a very sharp bite, and takes a small 1/4 x 1/16 piece with each application. And the revised piece looks like this. When applied back into place, we end up with a gap between the Belvedere firewall and the ends of the rollcage tubes in the engine compartment. I took the Superbird firewall and removed the ends (not a lot of detail to it to begin with) where the rollcage formerly matched up in the Superbird. I installed them onto the ends of the rollcage, and then when I inserted the Belvedere firewall, they close up the gap nicely. I'll chamfer the square edges so that the transition between the pieces isn't so abrupt, and then when it is all painted the same color, I think it makes a nice solution. Next, I attacked the dash, again with two pieces to choose from. Didn't take a lot of progress shots, but since the Belvedere dash will bolt nicely into the Belvedere body, but the Superbird dash, rudimentary as it is, looks kinda "racy", I just ground away the non-essential parts of both. And will put them together. Again, paint will help a lot to cover up some of the crudeness. One thing I did notice as I was closing up shop last night is that the Belvedere dash interferes with the A-posts of the Superbird cage, but a little bit of Dr. Dremel will cure that. Rear package tray and trunk/fuel cell are next.
  10. So here's the dilemma; you got two models, and they each have a component that serves a specific purpose, but they aren't exactly identical, so you have to either make a choice or dig really deep into fabrication. Firewall (already sanded vacuum lines, wiper motor, etc. off the Belvedere version) Where the firewall goes. Dashboard Package Tray Where the Package Tray goes. One admission of guilt: Belvedere package tray has already been removed from Belvedere trunk to allow this modification to proceed. Like Arnold said in the Terminator: I'll be back!"
  11. However, duct tape will remove Clearance stickers.
  12. Once again, working in 1/18 scale, trying to create models that never existed in this scale, and probably never will. Here are the donors: Body from Highway 61, chassis from Winged Warriors. Chassis To create this: Lots of fabrication that I am not going to bore you with, but had a breakthrough moment over the past couple of days that I wanted to share. Among the issues, was that the original front cage hoop interfered with the front radiator bulkhead of the Belvedere, so I cut some of the diecast to get it to fit. But as I got deeper into the build, it was clear that I needed to replace the pieces of the bulkhead in order to have a "complete" chassis, so I used styrene angle to fabricate and top and bottom for the radiator opening. Still had to cut the roll cage pieces, and will need to meld them eventually as I get closer to completion. Plus, with the differences, I had to insert a piece of brass channel to fill the gap for the front roll cage supports. One other element that I didn't find on 1/24 scale plastic versions of this model was the vestigial rear spoiler. As you can see in the second, black and white photo, there was clearly a piece of aluminum (from my experience) angle riveted to the trunk. I duplicated that with brass angle. Clearly it was painted body color, so I did some primer testing tonight, to see what it looked like. I think I have the rake of the body and the chassis pretty close. Still to go: firewall and dash, rear package tray, fuel cell mounted into trunk, and detailing.
  13. As someone who works exclusively in 1/18 scale diecast, I have to admit that this is the most amazing build I have ever witnessed. Simply outstanding.
  14. Nicely done. Not too many of us here working in 1/18 scale. I really liked back-dating the plumbing to delete the Aeroquip look. Thanks for the pictures!
  15. All great ideas. Wish me luck, we may launch the assault any day now. Thanks!
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