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KJ790

1969 Peterbilt 359 with Fruehauf Reefer

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This was a quick build for the most part, so not too many in progress photos. I tried to keep this build as box stock as I can, the only major changes that I made were wheels and tires and scratch built exhaust and visor. I replaced the kit suspension air bags with some rubber o-rings, and the kit roof lights with some parts box lights, as the mold flash on these kit parts were terrible. I cut the kit grille out to reveal the louvered radiator.

 

I started with the kit chassis, but added a steerable front axle. I used some AMT front rims and reshaped the rim to make it more accurate. I cut down a resin trailer hubs to make hubs for center point steering. The rear rims were drawn in 3D cad, then 3D printed, then cast in resin just for this model. A set of quarter fenders were scratch built out of some flat stock and styrene tube.

 

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Next the cab and hood were painted. The grille was cut out to give it an older "late 60's" look. Mufflers were made from styrene tube with aluminum tubing as the top pipes. The exhaust heat shields were photo-etch from CTM.

 

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For the trailer, I used an old glue bomb AMT fruehauf. I cut the bottom rails off of the sides and made new rails to represent a mid-60's model. The ribs on the front bulkhead were sanded off to give a smooth look and vent doors were added to the front corners. A side door was added along with a resin reefer unit. The landing gear was scratch built to be functional.

 

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I am still waiting for the truck door decals to arrive, but I couldn't pass up the photo opportunity of the pair almost completed.

 

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Very nice job, KJ.  Well done!

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Nice build as allways KJ.

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Another beauty! You’ve hit another home run with this one!

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Some great old school additions, center point steering and 5 hole lock ring steelies! I think the rear wheels would be a great seller!

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KJ, you have an amazing way of capturing that vintage look! It looks Awesome!! The wheels looks great. Those are the best looking split rim Alcoas that I've seen in scale. Great work!!!

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I noticed one thing when I looked in a book about old Peterbilts the other day and saw pictures of 359's with center point steering, on those pictures the trucks looks to have a narrower track at the front axle, the front wheels are closer together and tucked further in under the fenders with the center point steering setup than with regular steering setup...if the axle is the same width between the kinpins for the spindles the difference must be in the hubs...I don't know.
As I said in my earlier post, your build of this tractor trailer combination is very very nice and I look forward to see the final result.

Edited by Force

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I absolutely love this. Great job overall. I'm lovin' the trailer mods, too.  What size o-rings did you use on the suspension?  I've been wanting to try it myself.

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8 hours ago, Force said:

 the trucks looks to have a narrower track at the front axle, the front wheels are closer together and tucked further in under the fenders with the center point steering setup than with regular steering setup...

You are correct Force, the whole geometry of the front end is different on these center point axles.

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Thanks guys! I used o-rings with an 8mm ID and a 2mm cross section. I ordered a pack from McMaster-Carr so I would have plenty to use on future Peterbilt models as well.

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Thanks for the info on the o-rings.

 

The info about the steering was interesting. I now work for the post office and the mail trucks have basically the same setup. The front wheels are closer to one another than the rear wheels. It makes for a truck that basically "turns on a dime" as they say.

Edited by SpreadAxle

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So many details here to admire! Just amazing craftsmanship and easily one of my favorite model trucks this year. Stunning work!

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