Worst part of those Dodge truck kits, in my experience: the doors. They use tiny plastic hinge pins that break if you look at them wrong. If you want working doors, drill out those things and replace them with metal. A common straight pin trimmed to fit will work. Or you can just glue the doors in place. But then you'll need to do some work on getting everything straight and flush. They don't fit all that well. As far as molding and flash, the Lindberg reissues of the Little Red Wagon etc. look better than some IMC originals I've seen. I have an original IMC "Touch Tone Terror," the telephone version of the LRW. Not only was it molded in a gruesome translucent see-thru white plastic, there was so much flash I practically had to whittle the parts out with an X-Acto knife.
For a modeling idea, I went looking for photos of wrecked, abandoned etc. Corvettes. Came across this heartbreaking site - a whole page of C2 Vettes, flood-damaged, wrecked, or just nearly-junked "project cars." http://www.autosource.biz/Ad/1965_Corvette.htm
That is kind of neat. Thanks for responding. SC has many streets, schools, buildings and stuff named for Wade Hampton. The state even detached part of Beaufort County and re-named it Hampton County. (Thanks, Google!) I live about a hour from Greenville myself, going north.
Hit the Ollie's in Anderson SC again today. New kits are STILL appearing! The store had 1 HAWK "Weird-Ohs" Iron Maiden. Was hoping they'd have the "Wheel Rack" from the same series but no luck. Also found 1 lonely Monogram '82 Corvette, which I grabbed to make into a Dead Disco-mobile. Only got the Vette and another '77 Monte Carlo Snapper, because that MC is a very nice kit. Didn't need anything else. This store still had plenty of: AMT Tommy Grove Mustang FC, Lindberg "Color Me Gone" '64 Dodge, Little Red Wagon, Alternomad, Crown Vic Tennessee Highway Patrol, Revell Ferrari California and some others I don't remember. Also tons of aircraft kits, which seem to be moving very slowly.
Ollie's update for Upstate South Carolina: Visited 2 stores today, in Anderson and Greenville. I realize you probably don't care if you don't live around here. But I'm guessing most of the stores re-stock etc. the same way. So if you haven't found what you want yet, it could still be lurking in the storeroom of your local store. The Anderson store has definitely re-stocked the model shelves. Last week they had NO, ZERO Polar Lights Tommy Grove Mustang FC, today they had a bunch. Ditto for the Lindberg Surf Buggy, Revell Alternomad, 2010 Camaro convertible, Dodge Magnum SR8, and some other kits I'm sure I'm forgetting. The Greenville store had a bunch of the goofy Lindberg Weird-Ohs kits for $4.99. (But not "Beach Bunny Catching Rays," which I wanted.) The Anderson store had NONE of those Weird-Oh kits. Warning: while most of the model kits are displayed on an aisle "endcap" in both of these stores, some kits were not. They were just stacked in the regular toy aisle. In the Greenville store, that's where I found the Weird-Ohs and the Lindberg 1/48 Snark missile kits.
The weekly Flea Market was a bust today. Hardly any model kits, just a few Monogram & AMT NASCARs. Last week I scored the 4 1960 built-ups (T-Bird, Vette, Corvair and Ford pickup/trailer). But that's the way it goes. Sometimes it's fantastic, sometimes nothing. After the Flea Market, I went to 2 Ollie's stores (Anderson and Greenville, SC). Also 2 Hobby Lobbys. Most of the haul below came from Ollie's. The 53 Studebaker was in the Clearance aisle of Hobby Lobby for $14.99, couldn't resist at the price. Have a couple of resin bodies the chassis should fit. The AMT Cindy Lewis 57 Chevy and REVELL 72 Olds came from the Hobby Connection in Easley, SC. Paid full retail, which I HATE to do. But after checking the online dealers, shipping would have made their prices almost full retail anyway.
If you fool around with 1/48 aircraft at all, those Lindberg Snarks at Ollie's are great. They have a nice hydraulic service lift, tractor with fifth-wheel towing dolly, and NINE crew figures. An instant diorama in a box! And that's not even counting the missile and its launch trailer.
Driving down Wade Hampton Blvd. in Greenville, SC today. (On my way to Ollie's big kit sale!) Way up in front of me, saw a little white car with blue stripes on the trunk... And it turned out to be a Shelby Cobra with the rare factory hardtop in place. Don't know if it was the real thing or a clone, but it sure looked good and sounded better! http://www.brightonmotorsports.com/sites/default/files/vehicles/cars/available/shelby-cobra-replica-roadster-1966_1.jpg
The Surfite is built around an Austin Mini chassis and engine/transaxle. So if all else fails and you can't get the Surfite together (see below): you could get a Fujimi Vintage Look Mini kit (curbside) or Tamiya Mini (with engine) and do a "backyard restoration" diorama with the Surfite engine and other parts scattered around. Something I once saw that inspired me: a 1/24 Mini converted to a pickup truck, with decals for a "British Motor Car Co." shop truck. And a greasy Mini engine, tools and other parts in the bed. I'd probably do that with the Fujimi Vintage Look Mini kit. They go pretty cheap, even on Evil-Bay. And the Vintage Look kit includes Fujimi's accessory pack. Which includes a 1/24 Japanese vending machine, tissue box, sunglasses, pack of cigs/lighter and even a teddy bear. Shades of AMT circa 1962! Here's an article from Canney's Garage on his Surfite build. He warns that it's not as easy as it looks to build, and that chassis is pretty complicated. The article is old but does have some good building tips: http://canneysgarage.canney.net/showtime/surfite/index.html And over at Jalopy Journal, back in 2008 somebody was talking about building a clone of the Surfite. Has some pix of the real thing at the Peterson Museum: http://www.jalopyjournal.com/forum/threads/roths-surfite-clone.256929/
Is anybody familiar with this story about the Monogram Land Rover? Many years ago, I won that kit on eBay (and still have it). A guy bidding against me sent a message after the auction. He said he had worked on the real Land Rover that Monogram measured to make the kit. He said it belonged to an owner in Southern California - Burbank, I think. And the owner brought it into the garage where he worked. If I'm remembering this right...and I'm OLD...he said, among other mods, they put a U.S. built 2-barrel carburetor on it. I'd guess that might have something to do with state pollution controls at the time. Courtesy of the ironically-named CARB (California Air Resources Board). Anyway, here's Chuck Most's excellent article on the Monogram Landy. And why we'll probably never see it again: http://chuckmost.wix.com/madhouse-miniatures#!The-Sad-and-Sordid-tale-of-Monograms-Land-Rover/ccly/55232e080cf215f35a456199
OK, thanks for the responses, everybody. I almost bid on a 60 El Camino he had for sale. One of my favorite kits. But the bidding got out of my comfort zone. I found a complete, uncut and painted one much cheaper. Proving 2 things from your responses: (1) keep waiting on eBay and eventually you'll find what you're looking for cheaper. And (2) like most of you, would rather "screw it up myself."
I found an Open Road camper at a flea market for $5. All the camper parts were still there, except one small side curtain which is easily replaced. Even the small "Open Road" decals still look OK. But the previous owner slopped some thick white paint...or maybe glue...on the body passenger side. I've tried everything from acetone to lacquer thinner to brake fluid and nothing has removed that stuff, whatever it is. Not even Easy-Off, which has always removed everything. I also have 2 unbuilt original Rescue Vans with the side windows. I'll keep trying to remove The Goop from the camper, because I really don't want to sacrifice one of those mint bodies. And yes, those bodies with the open sides are VERY fragile. Even more so after you cut out the roof for the raised camper top. Nostalgia: I remember trying to build an Open Road camper when they were new. Tried to cut out the roof panel with a #11 X-Acto blade. Promptly stabbed myself and bled all over the white plastic. Or as I liked to say, I put a lot of myself into that kit...
Has anyone else seen the eBay seller "debuildrestorer?" He takes old AMT/Jo-Han gluebombs and "debuilds/restores" them. The para below is boilerplate from his listings and describes what he does: *WHAT I DO (mostly) - I BUY PREVIOUSLY BUILT 1958 THROUGH 1961 AMT AND JOHAN KITS (usually). I CAREFULLY DISASSEMBLE THEM, STRIP THE PAINT (when its needed) AND DECALS, AND REMOVE ALL CUSTOM GLUED ON PARTS. SOME ARE ROUGHER CONDITION WISE THAN OTHERS BUT I TRY TO MAKE THEM ALL EQUAL BY USING PLASTIC WELDING TECHNIQUES WITH LITTLE TO NO PUTTY, EVEN MAKING NEW PARTS WHEN NEEDED. IF THERE WAS A GREAT DEAL OF BODY WORK TO DO I NEED TO USE PRIMER TO ASSURE THAT IT IS WELL FINISHED. I USE AN IVORY PRIMER THAT CLOSELY MATCHES THE COLOR OF THE ORIGINAL PLASTIC WHEN NEW SO IT CAN BE BUILT IN THAT COLOR IF YOU AREN'T INTO PAINTING; " Here's one of his old listings, for an AMT 60 Corvette: http://www.ebay.com/itm/FLAWLESS-1960-CHEVY-CORVETTE-AMT-SMP-MODEL-KIT-SCREWBOTTOM-DEBUILT-RESTORED-/201535461904?hash=item2eec731a10:g:UQ8AAOSwwpdW1pc7