Thanks Nick! I've got 3 WIPs going using the new Revell '29 parts from my first kit...the body is going in the Eddie Dye project http://www.modelcarsmag.com/forums/topic/105602-eddie-dye-roadster-new-revell-29-scratchbash-sept-15-scaling-and-scratching/ , because the curve of the tail is more accurate on the Revell body than the old AMT. I'm using the zeed model-A frame and front axle from the new Revell kit to go under a '26 http://www.modelcarsmag.com/forums/topic/105644-26-ford-rod-based-on-new-revell-29-bits-sept-15-third-mockup/ because the A frame is perfect for a lighter car like a T, and the frame and rear wheel wells from the new Revell '29 are under this one. I was originally going to use a heavily modified AMT frame under this, or possibly a modified Revell '32 frame from the '32 kits, but the narrowed rear of this latest Revell frame seemed a great place to start here.
In the top pic, the blower housing looks like one of the "burnt metal" metalizer colors that guys use for jet aircraft afterburner stainless. In the bottom pic, the housing looks like it's been left as-cast, with a slightly rough surface, but the blower drive looks to have possibly been polished at one time, but not kept all sparkly. Subtle differences between exposed-metal colors of the blower housing and drive can make a model appear more realistic. If you shoot Testors metalizers 'wet', they lay down and give a nice soft sheen with a very fine grain that can be polished up to a quite realistic full-polish look, or only polished halfway, etc. If you shoot them 'dry', you can achieve a rougher as-cast effect. Just don't try to topcoat them with clear, as it muddies and ruins the metal effect, and simply looks like metallic paint.
Thanks for the input on the Ford modular engines, gentlemen. It's an engine I as yet know very little about, but you've given me some good info to start researching. I had a low-miles 4.6 and auto box that had been pulled out of a totaled police car here, slated to go in my old Jag XJ-6, but it disappeared when I left the place I was working in 2005 and ended my involvement with those engines before it began.
The last one from the company looked pretty good...a total redesign that looked more like a real race-car than a dorky kit-kar...except for a few unfortunate lines here and there (most notably, a slightly drooping nose).
Exactly, and the only way to do it during the time-period we're discussing was to carve away the entire surface of the mold, everything except the panel-line, to a level slightly below the panel line (which would yield a raised panel-line in the mold that would become a recessed line on the part). Obviously a vast amount of work, compared to sculpting a nice negative surface and simply scribing the lines into it. Think about how difficult it would be to carve the Auburn body as it is from a block of wood, with NO panel lines. (I'm talking a positive image, just as the kit parts look, but with no panel lines.) You could file and sand the carved shape to get nice smoothly-flowing shapes, right? Now think about carving the exact same shape, but having to LEAVE the raised panel-lines on the surface, perfectly formed, and you had to sculpt and shape BETWEEN them. A LOT harder, right? Now think about doing it as a negative image, in steel.
I spend a fair amount of time obsessing over stance, and this build will be no exception. The front axle I'll be using is the old dropped unit from the "fiddly" 1/25 Revell model-A kits of 50 years back. It comes with pose-able steering, but the brakes are mechanical A. A car like this with a big OHV V8 would certainly have been converted to the newer Ford hydraulics, and drilling the axle ends to .030" allows the '40 Ford juice-brake backing plates from the 1/24 Revellogram model-A woody, which have molded-in spindles, to be installed on wire kingpins.
It's important to get the stance and wheelbase established exactly before committing to gluing the front crossmember I removed earlier, back in. The height and fore-aft placement have to be dead-on to keep the 'look' I want. The crossmember gets narrowed considerably to fit the pinched rails too. The underside of the crossmember has to be in line with the tops of the frame rails, to allow the front spring to go high enough in the chassis to get the nose down where I want it. One thing I like a lot about this new chassis is the rear-axle locating tabs. Though I'll cut them off in the end, they allow fairly easy adjustment during mockup of the rear ride-height, and also allow the rear crossmember and suspension to be built in-place so everything stays the same. Measure a lot of times, fit carefully, glue once. I moved the rad shell and hood forward about a scale 1", so the rear of the hood will have to be extended to fill the gap. The wheelbase is now also about 111", or 5 scale inches longer than the '32 106" measurement. This creates some crowding of the bottom of the grille shell (which has to get notched) by the front axle and spring, but it's worth the hassle to me...for the longer look. You can see from this shot, again, how the narrowed Revell chassis (this is the '32 chassis from the new Revell '29 kit) sits under the 'AMT '29 body nicer, with not so much of the rails sticking out from the sides.
I'm quite happy with the stance at this point, though the nose MAY come down another scale 1/2 inch. She's not quite as aggressively nose-down as the first mockup, but this is about as far as I can go with the axle I have without putting a kink in the frame rails. A sharp eye will note that the brake backing plates are not centered vertically in the wheels, but I'm aware of this, and compensating measurements to locate the crossmember exactly from what's here have already been made. This shot also shows the effect of lengthening the wheelbase...longer, leaner, more graceful.
A front-3/4 shot from a scale-human perspective to check the lines again...
I would suggest you look for period color shots of the parts in question. For example, the August 1954 cover of Hot Rod shows a natural-aluminum GMC blower that's been bead-blasted (in '54, GMC blowers on hot-rods would have been taken from the original Detroit Diesel applications most likely, and would have been painted with the original engine as a unit; bead-blasting would make them look less like junkyard parts). I've found light gray primer to make a very believable simulation of this finish...and handling it doesn't hurt either. Finger oils can make the part look more used.
For polished aluminum or magnesium, I prefer to strip the chrome and use Testors buffing metalizers. Properly applied and buffed, they give a very realistic appearance as well... like the front wheel and canopy on my Challenger backdate.
Old aluminum and magnesium castings tend to get powdery oxide deposits on the surface. Again, different colors of gray primers or metalizers can get the color right, or a solid coat of primer with a light dusting of metalizer, buffed. Experiment. Maybe even an uneven dusting of flat-white to simulate the oxide.
Drew, all the AMT '32 wires I could find have an outer-rim OD of about .660". I'm sure I had one set of slightly larger diameter AMT wires that look like your pics, but I think I may have given them away a couple of years back. If you can use two of the .660" diameter wheels, I'll be glad to send them to you.