The 54 Merc model was actually built in the early 1970's when I lived in the SF area East Bay, and was built from a first issue AMT 49 Ford coupe kit. I still have the model, and it's still in decent shape. It was a replica model of my 1:1 car which I owned from 1963 to about 1968. I believe resin models were still in their infancy. Most resembled a solid paperweight.
I see some of my other models in the first photo.
NNL West #2 took place at the El Rancho Motel or Inn in Milbrae, California, near San Francisco. Yes, JBWELDA, Mark Townsend was at the #2 NNL West, along with others from California like Bob Woolley (Model Car Journal), Doane Yawger, David Dale, Gary Gollehon, Pat Ganahl (Pat and I both brought our built in the 1960's real 'bubble top' models), also guys from Oregon like Bob Paeth, Bob Robinson, Rick Rothermel, and from the Midwest, Andy Martin, Bob Bost, and Tom Dillon, and maybe 40 others whose names I can't recall at the moment. Oh yes! Tim Boyd was the emcee, and showed slides of various models from around the country.
Back then, these NNL's included all meeting for dinner at a nearby restaurant, and were non-competitive (no awards, no door prizes, no swap meet, and no carnival atmosphere) and they were the most fun of all, in my opinion. They spotlighted the social aspect of the hobby, and sharing info. Unlike contests prior to that time. NNL West #1 in California's Central Valley in Modesto, California was most enjoyable for me. I invited a couple local modelers to attend it, but they poo poo'd the idea of attending a show where there wasn't a contest.
Memorial Day weekend 2013 is a model show at West Coast Kustoms 'Cruisin Nationals', Saturday and Sunday. It'll be in the lobby of the Convention Center at the fairgrounds in Santa Maria, CA. Contact me if you wish more information, but do it soon!
I don't know why everybody is in an uproar over model kits from fledgling companies from 60 years ago when ERTL's box art for some of their AMT reissues was atrocious. Plus is it being the box art LAYOUT being questioned or the quality of the BUILT MODEL (if shown)? The negativity here no matter what the subject drives me batty.
It's silly to be counting all these rivets. And WHO is the judge of what is accurate and what is not? The best judge of accuracy is the person that built the original car. Otherwise, there are a lot of self appointed experts, and most of them disagree.
The term 'rare' is often loosely tossed around. Most of the models already mentioned are not truly 'rare', just hard to find. It also depends if you are speaking official model company domestic production. To me, the models (not kits) that would be truly rare would be factory styling models or Fisher Body Craftsman's Guild models... or any one of a kind scratchbuilt models. Of course, the term 'scratchbuilt' is also loosely tossed around.
Of the kits mentioned, I'd have to go with the 1911 Chevrolet, Stude Champ pickup, and Corvair Rampside. Then again, suppy and demand make rarity a vague term. Many model kits just are not very desirable to any collector or builder.