Jump to content
Model Cars Magazine Forum
DEL

1978 Chevy Nova 4dr POLICE

Recommended Posts

 

The difference between the 79 and 78 are minimal but I'll show the differences here. I have a fresh 79 body (blue) and a fresh 78 body (white). The 79 fender extensions are square in the top corners and this prevents the 78 grill from working also the 79's bumper filler goes all the way across and the 78 is only raised in the middle allowing the headlight buckets to rest in the correct location. Corrections can be made to the 79 body to allow the 78 grill to fit by cutting the center out  and seperating the bumper filler panel away from the body. Not an issue. Some filler putty can be applyed for the turn on the 78 fender extensions. Hopefully you can see the differences in my pictures. I have a front end from the 78 that I would sacrifice for the sake of making a seperate frontend to glue onto the 79 body. Please don't think that I'm nit-picking the project I am your #1 fan..  I love what your doing here and I'm happy that it's going so well. THANK YOU FOR MAKING IT HAPPEN.

Screenshot_20180410-161036.png

Screenshot_20180410-161048.png

Screenshot_20180410-161056.png

Screenshot_20180410-161121.png

Screenshot_20180410-161256.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I converted a 79 (Squad Rod) to a 78 when I built a scale replica of my real car. I had it in the hatchback at a show last summer and it got hot and warped the hood, bumper filler, and grill. Luckily it only ruined peices that can be replaced.  So it's in the repair shop until I get around to fixing it and it won't be goin to any shows after I get it fixed.

Screenshot_20180410-164528.png

Screenshot_20180410-164556.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anthony, I appreciate all the attention and guidance and support for my work.  Absolutely no offense taken. You are a fan of this particular car and know it inside & out I suppose. I'm the same way with 75-78 Ford Custom 500/LTD police package cars. We all have our 'things' that get us. (My next door kid neighbor is a bus freak. School buses. Greyhound buses, city buses. Go figure) 

Still, as stated before and as the thread shows I mean for this to be a 1978 when it is done since the biggest use of them was by the LA. County Sheriff back in those days and I always liked them.  I figured the main difference was the grille/headlight part but I see there is a minor difference in shaping for the big single HL buckets on the header.  The pics you posted are just what I needed and very informative.

I have been watching for a 77-78 Nova to surface on eBay, even a glue bomb I could harvest that HL/grille panel from at least if not the whole header but I haven't found one yet.  Still, Greg will not be ready to do this one like next week, so I suppose I still have time to wait and watch.  I hate buying a whole kit just to cull those one or two parts. It's almost always a silly expense vs what you just need.  If anyone has a grille & header or anything that supplies those to donate or sell for this project I'm open to suggestions.  Or loan to be copied and cast and then returned.  Just saying.

At any rate, I am putting the final touches on the main body these past few evenings and will have final pics to post before week's end I hope.

BTW DCNovaMan: Is the hood on a 79 the same as a 78 or is there some difference there as well?  They look the same to me in the pics I use for comparison but the person who knows is always a better judge. D.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It would appear to me that the 1979's bonnet is "sharper" at its leading-edge than its 1978 predecessor's . I don't have a '78 in my hands ; just going by images .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a buddy (Roy) in high school that had a 75/78? LTD with a smog 460... he would get that thing up to 100 on the back roads... Scary! 

The only real difference in the two hoods is the trim that matches the fender extension trim around the headlights. (can be sanded off).  

While we're on the topic, the chassis from the Revell 69 Nova is a close fit to the MPC 4th gen Nova... In reality it wouldn't be correct but it's better than the one provided in the MPC kit. I've got a bunch of parts left over from the local slot car guys. I'm ready to get a few of these built.

I have a 77 body that I'm willing to donate... PM your info and I'll get it out to you...

 

Screenshot_20180412-114129.jpg

Screenshot_20180412-115552.png

Screenshot_20180412-115856.png

Screenshot_20180412-120843.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Anthony, Thank you sir!

PM coming.  I will remember that when I finally get these made/cast.;)

PS: I had four 1978 Ford LTD 460 Police Interceptor cars from the LSP in the early 80's.  One day on a straight stretch I decided to finally see how far up the 140 speedo I could get. I got it up to 130 with pedal to spare. And yet, despite weighing about 5600 pounds, it began to 'walk' from side to side.

I let off the gas.  It went fast enough just fine!  I spent ten years doing a frame off resto of it. Here is a pic or two.  That's me on the left in the last one on the way to it's first show. All equipment & markings were original and actually came from the LSP.

1998 first show Fayetteville, Ar  - Me & Don  (2) - Copy.jpg

My LSP 78 LTD  w- Markings -Fayettevilla, Ar. Ca. 1998.jpg

My LSP 78 LTD  - 460 P.I. Fully Restored a -Fayettevilla, Ar. Ca. 1998.jpg

Edited by DEL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Love your commitment to this and you're doing a stellar job. 

A frame off, 78 LTD restoration :o .  Now there's a new one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Nova nears completion.  The final bit will be the grafting of a 77-78 header panel onto the body of this kit.  But right now I thought i would show some pics of the inlay of the C-Pillar cabin vents into the c-pillars, and then the door handles that I fabbed up from strip styrene and installed.

 

180410 - C-Vent inst (1).JPG

180410 - C-Vent inst (5).JPG

180416 - C-Vent final Inst  (5).JPG

180415 - C-Plr Vents Instld (5).JPG

180416 - C-Vent final Inst  (4).JPG

Edited by DEL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Now the door handles.  I carved each handle out of .15 styrene sprue, then took a bit of round rod, filed the end flat where it goes under the handle and glued each handle to it's 'button', leaving a short bit of the round rod extruding to place in the door by way of a pin-vise drilled locator hole. 

Also each button had some kind of half-moon body accent in the door panel itself. To create that I ook a bit of hollow round tube proper size sliced a very thin piece off the end then cut THAT in half creating a "C" or half moon shape. That had to be added to each handle assy at it's base  Yes, it was a PITA of the first order, with Foul Language Streamers. :wacko:

Now I look for hubcaps and wait for the header panel/grille..

180413 - Door Handle build & instl (2).JPG

180413 - Door Handle build & instl (4).JPG

180413 - Door Handle build & instl (7).JPG

180413 - Door Handle build & instl (15).JPG

180416 - C-Vent final Inst  (8).JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, DEL said:

The Nova nears completion.  The final bit will be the grafting of a 77-78 header panel onto the body of this kit.  But right now I thought i would show some pics of the inlay of the C-Pillar cabin vents into the c-pillars, and then the door handles that I fabbed up from strip styrene and installed.

 

180410 - C-Vent inst (1).JPG

180410 - C-Vent inst (5).JPG

180416 - C-Vent final Inst  (5).JPG

180415 - C-Plr Vents Instld (5).JPG

180416 - C-Vent final Inst  (4).JPG

Wow, just wow...

 

I see you tape up portions as you work, is that to protect the details when you are sanding?

I find it impossible to work with tiny details, so I am in awe of the work you do!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, Shaun and all.  I appreciate the appreciation of the work(?!)

To answer your question I use tape to limit primer only to the actual areas being worked for substantial change.  I learned long ago repeated plastering of the (whole or most) entire body just caused a buildup of primer necessitating it's removal in final stages. Obscuring finer details, badges & lettering for example.  Sometimes even body lines. When all is completed I remove the tape and wet sand the edges down to conform with the rest of the body. 

To that end and a personal FYI to other scratchbuilders; the attached pic is of the absolute BEST spray can primer I've ever encountered and I have tried a bunch!  It sprays on smooth and wet, builds up slow but nice, dries FAST (like 8-15 mins) so you can get back to work, and it's inexpensive to boot. It's marketed under several different names but the most recent I know of is  KEY 890, or Key Gray Primer, Flex-n-Fill.  About $7.00 a can.  I got this from a local LKQ outlet. Take my word for it, it's a super nice primer to use on our models. 

SAM_1939.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Mr. Ron,

Your pic makes you look like the Dude.  Abiding... ;)

And great minds think alike: Anything to do with a police car is cool.   As the Brits might say, Too Right!  Copcar models were what got me out of Battleships and sailing naval vessels.I bought the Chevy caprice annuals starting back around '71 or so. MPC so helpfully threw in that single bubble light! 

 

FS B.jpg

Edited by DEL

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dwayne,

I drove a 9C1 on the job back in the day.  It was incredible!  And, I owned my own.  Great cars!  Small and tight, but my favorite police car ever.  (I have stories . . . )

I will be working with Greg and Mike on these when the time comes. 

I saw, examined, and inspected (oh, yeah, and drooled over) the first pull from the mold of your '88 Ford sedan Saturday -- and it is remarkable!!  Good job.  

The Novas will be fantastic, folks!   Guaranteed.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks a lot Danno for all the kind praise on the master works I have done. Can't forget and I want to add my thanks once again to Greg and Mike also.   Greg's Molding and casting, and Mike's glass work, as well as the detail to the hood and separation of the header panel, is every bit as much an art as what I do.

Mr. Terry, as soon as we get to the actual casting of the Novas you can be sure of a PM from me to let you know.   Meantime DiscoNovaMan otherwise known as Anthony, my new co-collaborator on this project shot me some parts.  A header panel and a HL/Grille part from a 78 to graft onto this 79 body.  Just for giggles I couldn't help myself I had to see how off/close the two were. It's VERY close. after a grind of the bar under the grille at each end to allow the HL buckets to slide in and a bit of trim above behind the leading edge, in the grille went. The main diff at that point is that the 79 HL bucket openings are VERY square. I can fill them and round them off but I may just go ahead and do surgery and graft the 78 header in anyway. Then I notched the edges of the hood for the upper inner edges of the HL buckets and there it was.  Have a look see!

SAM_1964.JPG

SAM_1963.JPG

SAM_1965.JPG

SAM_1967.JPG

SAM_1968.JPG

SAM_1971.JPG

SAM_1972.JPG

SAM_1976.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

More pics, and HL bucket-header closeups..

SAM_1978.JPG

SAM_1979.JPG

SAM_1980.JPG

SAM_1981.JPG

SAM_1976.JPG

SAM_1977.JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Dwayne, I have no doubt that you are the best guy for the job... It couldn't have worked out more perfect. The friendships we form here on the fourm is a great foundation for building the best models. Greg has an Awesome reputation in casting some non-ordinary resin projects. I'd say this project fits in that category.

The Mpc car best represents the 4th gen nova although it has it's accuracy issues that said, I think Dwayne's 4 door conversion is better than the orignal two door example by far. From the window frames to the correct roof angles this is what it was meant to be. You have breathed new life into a once forgotten model kit. Everytime I see it, makes me think "dang I wished I'd thought of that myself". Lol! Mulsanne blue with black intereior. Jay Leno featured one on his TV show. Here is the link.https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://m.youtube.com/watch%3Fv%3DfNMpfFuFwc4&ved=0ahUKEwjbgcmm1svaAhUIk1kKHenrBdoQwqsBCCAwAA&usg=AOvVaw22JUqltYRcZp0RiWloDHaQ

 

1977 COPO 9C1 Nova.jpg

Edited by disconovaman

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anthony thank you for what you said.  I feel exactly the same way about the partnerships have formed since joining here.  I appreciate all the help, guidance pointers and critiques I have received on each one of my projects.

Well, it is on the edge of done.  I went ahead and grafted in the header you sent me, had to work it a bit at joint partitions but I think it's quite nice.  Right now I'm working on 4dr-ing the interior bucket and when that is finished so will this conversion be.

The pics below are right after 'surgery' for the header..

180420 - Hdr graft (3).JPG

SAM_1989.JPG

180420 - Hdr graft (6).JPG

180420 - Hdr graft (7).JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And this was last night after a bit of putty and priming..

180422 - hdr inc. & primed (1).JPG

180422 - hdr inc. & primed (3).JPG

180422 - hdr inc. & primed (2).JPG

180422 - hdr inc. & primed (7).JPG

180422 - hdr inc. & primed (6).JPG

180422 - hdr inc. & primed (5).JPG

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perfect fit Dwayne! It looks like it was always molded on the car. totally looks like a 9c1 nova. One step closer to the finished product. Those other parts are in the mail, should be there in the next few days..

I'm not sure if you're familiar with the history on the MPC nova, originally started out as a 75 Pontiac Ventura. The original tool was modified to create the 77-78 nova and then modified agian for the 79. Through the years those interiors were unchanged. I'm excited what changes you're making on that interior. Creating the package tray, backseat, and rear doorpanels could be challenging. I don't think I've ever seen bucket seats in the cop cars either. The bench seats were plain with no patteren so that may be an advantage. The 60 chevy Amt pick-up may be a starting point for those seats.  Depending on what direction you're heading with the interior could get pretty involved. Also in 77 the dash changed from the 75-76. Here are some pics for reference...

20180420_170041.jpg

dashboards.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the pics & diagrams Anthony..

Ok, first of all that is THREE (3) different steering wheels.  The pic of the black interior one is mated to the same dash as shown in diagram 77-79 above.  As you know, the MPC Squad Rod kit utilizes the 75-76 dash & steering wheel!!!   As you said, unchanged. What a mess. I guess MPC couldn't be bothered to make the proper dash for the 77-79 Novas.

But I watched the Leno video, and allegedly the Nova in it is an actual survivor restored LACSO 78 Nova, (ick. Look at the 'engine bay in that car below.  God almighty..) which does have the same steering wheel as the one in the black interior above  and if memory serves, it is a Z-28 Camaro steering wheel.  A quick check of G-Imgs and there it is.  So one can be scarfed from a 78-80 Z-28 kit OR I can build one from scratch.  It is not a difficult wheel to construct.   What is a bit dismaying is while the "NOVA" scripts on the fenders are accurate, they are way too big.  So I'll have to copy and try to graft a set off the tail panel script. And lose the "CHEVROLET" script and the banner on the hood's lead edge.

The stretched cowhide seats makes the interior VERY simple to do.  I can build a bench seat for the front to replace the buckets, and all I have to do is smooth out the rear seat, do the door panels and that is a dunn-deal.  We had those same stretched cowhide smooth flat seats with trampoline 'heavy police duty' springs in them in our Diplomats and Chevy Impala's of the 80's.  The old guys complained about their backs bitterly on those. No wonder they never wanted to leave the office.  The really bad thing was the inmate on the washrack would sadistically lather every vinyl surface down with that Son-Of-A Gun 'protectant' which was really just milky WD-40 on everything.  Get a bad call and between those aircraft carrier landing deck seats, the rubber floors, the lubrication and you wearing boots and no handholds ANYWHERE in the car..  well, one hard turn or curve and you could wind up knowing WAY more about your partner than you ever wanted to know!!

As I touched on above, the exterior and the toys resto on the 9C1 Nova below is nice, but the very thing that makes that car  COP, the ENGINE and it's engineering, was evidently totally ignored to get to the 'fun stuff'. Paint, stikkers lites n sireens!!   I know a whole group of 1:1 copcar ...'restorers' (well, that's what they call themselves) who work this exact same way. Only they don't even bother to find real police package cars to do them with. Too problematic. A dead granny's garaged grocery getter advertised on Craigslist by her survivors is their goal. Sooo much easier to.. 'restore'.   Like the guy below it only has to look like a copcar.  Still at least that guy used a actual LACSO ex-unit for his project. Points for that I suppose.   But I digress.

Leno Garage - 78 Chevy Nova La. County SO c.jpg

Leno Garage - 78 Chevy Nova La. County SO b - Copy.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There is a Thread on SNS the nova fourm that is dedicated to the restoration of the 9c1 Ex police novas. For those guys a base nova (dead granny's) car won't cut it... they were nothing like the real thing... Lol!

Ironically the Amt nova has the 4 spoke steering wheel known as the Sport wheel because it was standard equipment on the 75-76 Super Sport. That steering wheel was part of the 9c1 package as well. 

The problem with the back seat on the mpc car is as you know it's a hatchback so the seat is shorter because it's made to fold down. I've built lots of these kits and have converted some of them to trunk versions. What I would do was add to the ends of the seat not the most conventional way but I don't consider myself a fabricator. I would struggle on that 4 door interior conversion. I could take on that 77-79 dashpad though, that seems fun. Here is a pic of my current hatchback...

Screenshot_20180423-221319.png

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎4‎/‎21‎/‎2018 at 8:24 AM, disconovaman said:

Dwayne, I have no doubt that you are the best guy for the job... It couldn't have worked out more perfect. The friendships we form here on the fourm is a great foundation for building the best models. Greg has an Awesome reputation in casting some non-ordinary resin projects. I'd say this project fits in that category.

The Mpc car best represents the 4th gen nova although it has it's accuracy issues that said, I think Dwayne's 4 door conversion is better than the orignal two door example by far. From the window frames to the correct roof angles this is what it was meant to be. You have breathed new life into a once forgotten model kit. Everytime I see it, makes me think "dang I wished I'd thought of that myself". Lol! Mulsanne blue with black intereior. Jay Leno featured one on his TV show. Here is the link.https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://m.youtube.com/watch%3Fv%3DfNMpfFuFwc4&ved=0ahUKEwjbgcmm1svaAhUIk1kKHenrBdoQwqsBCCAwAA&usg=AOvVaw22JUqltYRcZp0RiWloDHaQ

 

1977 COPO 9C1 Nova.jpg

This is exactly like the car I drove way back when. I HAVE to get one of these. 

G

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...