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AMT 1969 Corvair engine


GerN
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I have an RCERTL 2004 version of the  AMT 1969 Corvair kit, and I've just assembled the engine to copy it for a rat rod I'm making.  I had to file/sand every flat mating surface on it to avoid large gaps.  The engine fan shroud would not fit over the fan; I filed both mating surfaces for the fan, but finally got out my large reamer and opened the hole in the shroud.  Very disappointing.  I also have the 5 engine parts pack Corvair; I used the other engine because it isn't all chrome.  BTW, the chrome on the one I used was the most resistant to stripping I've ever seen.

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6 minutes ago, Vince Nemanic said:

Here's a tip for you, Nick. I'm pretty sure that the Corvair engine from the AMT show rods (like the Depth Charger) is from the Meyers Tow'd. It already has a VW transaxle, and the fan belt is two piece- that is a pretty distinctive feature.

 

Thanks for the "heads up" Vince, as I'll have to keep that in mind.

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4 hours ago, Junkman said:

2004, ay? Is it the one made from a semi translucent grey softish plastic?

Yes, that's the one.  The fan shroud is clear.  I've separated the engine and tranny, which I should have done before any gluing:  the tranny lines up fine, but the engine is off.  Glad not everybody has had my problems with it.

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That clear shroud isn't the original one for the kit.  At some point, the kit was reworked for a "budget" series.  A number of clear parts (headlight lenses, side glass) were eliminated, and the shroud was retooled to put it on a smaller clear shot with just the main window unit.  Apparently the other parts don't exist, otherwise they would have been put back in later.

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Curious that the Parts Pack engine kit which has the Corvair parts doesn't have the fan shroud. That to me is a very conspicuous part as that covers pretty much the top of the engine.

IMG_2470.PNG.8e70fbb4723f9084c8c053fc7914245d.PNG

Interesting info about the fit troubles.........I'll keep that in mind if I ever get around to building a Corvair.

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On 1/27/2018 at 4:35 PM, Mark said:

That clear shroud isn't the original one for the kit.  At some point, the kit was reworked for a "budget" series.  A number of clear parts (headlight lenses, side glass) were eliminated, and the shroud was retooled to put it on a smaller clear shot with just the main window unit.  Apparently the other parts don't exist, otherwise they would have been put back in later.

The clear cooling shroud has always been part of the '65 - '69 AMT Corvair kits. See the instructions from the '65 Corsa kit below. The earlier AMT Corvairs, '60 - '64, I believe were all curbside. So no engine or cooling shroud. 

IMG_2744.JPG

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1 hour ago, unclescott58 said:

The clear cooling shroud has always been part of the '65 - '69 AMT Corvair kits. See the instructions from the '65 Corsa kit below. The earlier AMT Corvairs, '60 - '64, I believe were all curbside. So no engine or cooling shroud. 

IMG_2744.JPG

But the clear part in the current issue of the kit (and all issues since the mid-Seventies) is NOT the same part that was in early issues.  It was retooled, and the newer part doesn't fit as well as the original.

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10 minutes ago, Mark said:

But the clear part in the current issue of the kit (and all issues since the mid-Seventies) is NOT the same part that was in early issues.  It was retooled, and the newer part doesn't fit as well as the original.

What proof do you have? And why would they do that? 

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I compared the actual parts.  They're different.  In the mid-Seventies, AMT went on some cost-cutting mission.  Part of it included eliminating clear red taillights and cutting down clear parts trees in a number of kits.  They didn't just eliminate parts, they made the associated trees smaller, probably so more of them could be mounted to a base and run at one time.  Probably to eliminate a couple of positions in the production area and save money.  

The Corvair lost its side glass, as well as a number of very nicely done custom headlamp and fog light lenses.  The clear shroud was among those parts, and it was probably more work to relocate the original shroud than to just tool a new one and connect it to the window unit on a smaller tree.  Other kits reissued in the mid-Seventies also lost side glass and custom lenses.  The '65 Grand Prix is another example: it lost all of the headlamp lenses (stock ones were tooled into the bumper/grille), lost the custom rear window, lost the side glass, lost the clear fuel container for the road test version (which wasn't in the reissue anyway).  The red taillight lenses were lost too; there were never any stock ones, but the custom ones were engraved into the parts to which they would have been attached.

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4 hours ago, Mark said:

I compared the actual parts.  They're different.  In the mid-Seventies, AMT went on some cost-cutting mission.  Part of it included eliminating clear red taillights and cutting down clear parts trees in a number of kits.  They didn't just eliminate parts, they made the associated trees smaller, probably so more of them could be mounted to a base and run at one time.  Probably to eliminate a couple of positions in the production area and save money.  

The Corvair lost its side glass, as well as a number of very nicely done custom headlamp and fog light lenses.  The clear shroud was among those parts, and it was probably more work to relocate the original shroud than to just tool a new one and connect it to the window unit on a smaller tree.  Other kits reissued in the mid-Seventies also lost side glass and custom lenses.  The '65 Grand Prix is another example: it lost all of the headlamp lenses (stock ones were tooled into the bumper/grille), lost the custom rear window, lost the side glass, lost the clear fuel container for the road test version (which wasn't in the reissue anyway).  The red taillight lenses were lost too; there were never any stock ones, but the custom ones were engraved into the parts to which they would have been attached.

I'm not buying it 100%. Especially since a lot of parts like the red taillights have reappeared. I also can not see spending money to modify a tool to the degree your talking about if your doing it for cost cutting measures. I'm willing to bet some modifications came because the Corvair Funny Car kit used the same body. I'm guessing that's maybe more the case on lost body parts. Side windows, extra lights, etc. But the engine and chassis parts look basically the same to me. I'd need to see the clear tree from the '65 Corsa kit, vs the latest reissue to buy the retooling of the fan shroud story. I maybe wrong. It wouldn't be the first time. But, I need better proof. 

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I have the Dune Buggy GT kit, so I stripped its all-chrome engine.  Maybe that's my mistake:  this engine has fit problems too, although the fan shroud is OK, and better detailed than the AMT kit.  At least this time I removed the pins and got everything flat first.

Here is a fascinating bit of Corvair history, a modular engine with up to twelve cylinders:  http://www.curbsideclassic.com/automotive-histories/engine-prototype-the-stillborn-corvair-gen2-modular-engine-from-two-to-twelve-cylinders/

Edited by GerN
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7 hours ago, GerN said:

I have the Dune Buggy GT kit, so I stripped its all-chrome engine.  Maybe that's my mistake:  this engine has fit problems too, although the fan shroud is OK, and better detailed than the AMT kit.  At least this time I removed the pins and got everything flat first.

Here is a fascinating bit of Corvair history, a modular engine with up to twelve cylinders:  http://www.curbsideclassic.com/automotive-histories/engine-prototype-the-stillborn-corvair-gen2-modular-engine-from-two-to-twelve-cylinders/

Tell us more about the Dune Buggy GT kit. What kit is it? Who makes/made it? What scale? And any photos? 

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My copy of this kit is a RevMono from 1997.  It is 1/25.  I should not have expected much from a kit calling a dune buggy a "Gran Turismo".  By the way, I also have one of the Pirhana Spy Car kits with a Corvair engine, also disappointing.

Revell%20H1321%20Gturismo.jpg

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On ‎1‎/‎27‎/‎2018 at 5:58 PM, MrObsessive said:

Curious that the Parts Pack engine kit which has the Corvair parts doesn't have the fan shroud. That to me is a very conspicuous part as that covers pretty much the top of the engine.

IMG_2470.PNG.8e70fbb4723f9084c8c053fc7914245d.PNG

Interesting info about the fit troubles.........I'll keep that in mind if I ever get around to building a Corvair.

The parts pack comes with a generator not alternator as you would expect in 1963 or so. It has a nice turbo unit.

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I have a 69 Corvair kit that looks to be pretty old(small, narrow box). It has the clear fan shroud, but no side windows or headlight lens, and the one and only chrome engine part is the fan. It's a custom version with just the mags and a spoiler molded onto the back. Kit # T159, anyone know when this was made?

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On 1/30/2018 at 9:22 PM, unclescott58 said:

I'm not buying it 100%. Especially since a lot of parts like the red taillights have reappeared. I also can not see spending money to modify a tool to the degree your talking about if your doing it for cost cutting measures. I'm willing to bet some modifications came because the Corvair Funny Car kit used the same body. I'm guessing that's maybe more the case on lost body parts. Side windows, extra lights, etc. But the engine and chassis parts look basically the same to me. I'd need to see the clear tree from the '65 Corsa kit, vs the latest reissue to buy the retooling of the fan shroud story. I maybe wrong. It wouldn't be the first time. But, I need better proof. 

My money is on Mark. After all, he's owned most of the kits he's mentioned and has the parts to compare. Another kit that received similar treatment would be the 64 Impala, which lost all of it's clear headlight lenses. Also, in some cases, the clear tools were lost or misplaced, necessitating new tools. The 57 Chevy,  25 Model T and 40 Willys for example. 

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18 hours ago, Dave Darby said:

My money is on Mark. After all, he's owned most of the kits he's mentioned and has the parts to compare. Another kit that received similar treatment would be the 64 Impala, which lost all of it's clear headlight lenses. Also, in some cases, the clear tools were lost or misplaced, necessitating new tools. The 57 Chevy,  25 Model T and 40 Willys for example. 

Mark is correct on this one.  AMT faced severe financial difficulties around 1970, and struggled for several years until the Semi-Truck kits rescued them for a while.   Then they were hit with the rising cost of plastic (due to the Arab oil embargo) and increased labor costs (the UAW represented the work force at the Troy, Michigan factory).   All these factors, plus a new, very business oriented President, weighed on the decisions to simplify many of the kits as Mark describes.  This was also the period in which many of the old Trophy Series kits were revised to eliminate many of the extra building parts and versions.  In more recent years, starting with the early AMT-Ertl years, and picking up with the Round 2 era, some of these simplification actions have been reversed.   TIM     

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