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359 and the 289 (single drive 359) were always tilt hood with rolled (round) fenders. 359 is a wide front version of a 358. 353 was a flat fender, wide front, butterfly hood. Revell attempted this with the odd shaped fenders on a 359 tilt hood. 358 and the 288 (single drive 358) was a narrow front, tilt hood with rolled fenders. 358 is a tilt hood version of a 351. 351 and the 281 (single drive 351) was a narrow radiator, butterfly hood with rolled fenders and later flat fenders and optional set-back axle). 348 was a fiberglass slope hood, somewhat narrow front tilt hood for dump and mixer. 349 was a fiberglass slope hood, wide front tilt hood version of 348 All other hoods were butterfly - 341, 343, 381, 383, 387, 397, 391, 350 and back.
Back in the late 50's/early 60's, there was an engineering drawing of a wide-front 351 "tropic radiator" - looking very much like what would later become the 359. It is unclear if any were built.
Like what Terry said - in the modeling world.. anything goes. Once a truck leaves the factory.. all bets are off. To confuse the issue even more - back in the day, Peterbilt had a "repair shop" at the factory that would rebuild customers trucks with newer parts - you might have a 350 with a newer cab, or a 1957 351 converted to a wide-front 359 - it would look like a 359 but with the 350-era cab and be 10 years older than a 359 should be.. (the truck would still be a 351 technically).
To look like a proper 351/281, sand off the raised lip and row of rivets on the side of the hood. Replace the raised lip with a scribed in panel seam. Also sand off the rows of angled rivets on the sides of the hood. The top of hood fluted ribs also are not present on the 351 hood. The raised side lip, angle rivets, angled air cleaner cut and the fluted ribs on the top are all features of a tilt hood. 351/281 was a butterfly hood. 351 also didn't have the back of fender step like the 359 has. The 351 step was tucked into the corner between the fender and the lower skirt. Here are a couple of 351 hood photos that should help.
Here's a photo of one of the NASA Peterbilt 351L 's when brand new. http://media.fotki.com/1_p,rrggfbfbdbgfwfwxffsgsgfrqf,vi/sbqwbwgbdxrbgdsrqfxrftqwgtbw/0/11670/10310470/ThrowBackNASA351Lallwhite-vi.jpg
There was a post about 378/357 mixers not being seen without Boost-a-load type rear axles. Here's one (one of several) I spotted last week in Texas. This one is a 357-111 (357 was usually spec'd for mixer/dump duties - 357 and 378 share the 119" sf and sb hoods)
I have one of these as a planned build also. The photo of one of the trucks with the older Unilite cab shows the trucks as they were originally built - The trucks were later recabbed with the 1100-series cabs. This gives two build idea.. older, original, which is probably what mine will be, or the later version with the 1100-series cab. The trucks were model 351L (L for logger - and had the full walk-on fenders). They were very highly spec'd and customized from the base 351. The original color applied at the factory was all white - white cab, hood, fenders, fuel tanks, wheels and chassis. Some spec's to help in your build: Wheelbase: 235" Hendrickson RSA-380 walking beam rear suspension Firestone tires originally installed10:00 x 22 The hood is the long-hood for the 12v71 and the truck has the deep-core radiator - Most likely the overall BBC is longer than the typical 127" that a 12v71 equipped 351 had, the build sheet doesn't indicate the BBC.
The kit represents a 1968-70 Fruehauf. The type of tank was built into the 80s, but the full round body was not that common. I have only seen 2 of this configuration in person, the rest have been oval shaped (true elliptical). This release of the kit has the tank halves re-tooled to eliminate the warped parts. The original tool was from 1970 and had worn out.
The decals include red stripe options for the tank body and the tractor (Peterbilt 352, but could work with others).
Attached pics: Box and decals; Box side; Partially assembled new-release; Instruction sheet paint guide; modified build with additional axles and Moebius wheels and modified tank body for a Michigan Special style tanker; Modified tank body (wider) and resin 2-hole wheels from KFS. Tim