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CabDriver

Revell Miata Mk1

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I've been wanting to build a full-detail Mk1 Miata (or a Miata NA, as Mazda called them) so I picked up a Revell kit a little while back and started messing with it this week.  The detail is pretty good - not as crisp as the Tamiya model of the same car, but this has an engine so it's the only game in town...

This isn't going to be a quick build - I'm spending a lot of time researching and referencing to get it as nice as I can make it.  I have a Mk2 Miata for reference, luckily, but there's some differences between the cars so I picked up some literature to help.

First up, I shot some primer on the body to get an idea of how much work is gonna be involved in getting that as perfect as I can get it:

2v2JrD1Lyxue8Lf.jpg

You can probably spot some of the minor stuff this will need to get the body straight, but the main thing that bugged me right away is the fit on that hood:

2v2JrD1Hnxue8Lf.jpg

The panel gaps aren't even all the way around, and the front edge of the hood sits low compared to the pop up lights, as you can see.  It should be nice and level, like this:

1990-Mazda-Miata-940x636.jpg

Rather than just using filler to bring the hood up and level at the front there I decided to use a little thin styrene strip, which I'll attach here, where the knife blade is:

2v2JrD1Adxue8Lf.jpg

Like so!

2v2JMEcg8xue8Lf.jpg

A little preliminary fitting shows that the front of the hood is now at the right level...but some sanding reveals that it droops a little at the front edges:

2v2JMEcdNxue8Lf.jpg

I added a thin coat of Squadron white putty, let it set and then levelled it out...I think that MIGHT have got things a lot closer - I guess I'll see tomorrow once I squirt some primer on there:

2v2JMEw3jxue8Lf.jpg

2v2JMaoGMxue8Lf.jpg

Meanwhile, I got the engine halves together so I can what I'm gonna be working with here:

2v2JdrKT5xue8Lf.jpg

I need to strip the chrome from the head, and clean up those molded in plug wires so I can run real my own:

2v2JrDp3yxue8Lf.jpg

Got some great reference material to work from here luckily!

2v2JrD1dzxue8Lf.jpg

I'm really gonna push myself on this build, see how good I can make it - so any pointers and constructive criticism from our wealth of super experienced builders very welcome!  More soon!

Edited by CabDriver

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Looking good so far, nice fix on the bonnet fitment ! 

My son just passed his test recently, and he loves these cars. Been thinking of building one for him, so this thread will be useful in future. I'll be following along, hope the build goes smoothly !!

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Some good building and correcting going on here.

 

Edited by Rider

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Thanks fellas!  I had to move shortly after I started this one, so it ended up packed away...until I saw this at the NY Auto show this week:

2v2EsigwLxue8Lf.jpg

 

I took a bunch of reference pics (including laying on the floor to try and shoot underneath it from behind the rope :D )and got home and pulled this thing out again.

Shot some filler primer on there to give me something to sand through to get it smooth and nice:

2v2JM68MGxue8Lf.jpg

Followed by white Createx sealer:

2v2EsiLdyxue8Lf.jpg

I've been deliberating for a few days about what to do for the color inside of the body panels and bumpers.  I've seen Miata NAs shot with some kind of black underseal inside the panels (including inside the plastic bumpers), and I've seen them with grey primer, bare plastic bumpers (in black AND white plastic) and various combinations of all three.  Not being able to take the bumpers off the show car, I carefully masked the bumpers and body and went with a flat black...and when I airbrush the red I'll be letting it pick up a little overspray (which I've also seen on a few of these) - kinda like you see on a Mopar chassis!

2v2EsiGqGxue8Lf.jpg

Not much progress, but excited to have it back on the bench! :D

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Just my opinion but I would strip the chrome from the engine parts and paint them aluminum like the 1:1

2v2JrD1dzxue8Lf.jpg

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Absolutely JC!  These wheels too:

2v2EsTivdxue8Lf.jpg

 

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 the exhaust manifold is made from stainless steel if that helps.

 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, dublin boy said:

 the exhaust manifold is made from stainless steel if that helps.

 

On a stock NA?  Mine was cast iron I think - same on my NB too...

Edited by CabDriver
Typo

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No stainless, it helped the cat warm up faster was the reason I think.

Goes out to the garage to look at my NA.....lol

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7 hours ago, dublin boy said:

No stainless, it helped the cat warm up faster was the reason I think.

Goes out to the garage to look at my NA.....lol

Ohhh, I never knew that!  I had the manifold off my NB and had it in my head that the NA was the same too...live and learn!  Thanks Shay!

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The other thing is people think both the bonnet and boot lid are aluminium, but it's just the bonnet.

My one is well travelled, it's actually a Eunos Roadster. Sehond hand Jap imports (right hand drive which works here) were popular back in the late 90's.

 

Looking forward to more Jim! I have the Revell kit, the body shell is nowhere as nice as the Tamiya, but they are both exactly the same size, making the revell kit 1/24 not 1/25 as the box says.

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1 hour ago, dublin boy said:

The other thing is people think both the bonnet and boot lid are aluminium, but it's just the bonnet.

My one is well travelled, it's actually a Eunos Roadster. Sehond hand Jap imports (right hand drive which works here) were popular back in the late 90's.

 

Looking forward to more Jim! I have the Revell kit, the body shell is nowhere as nice as the Tamiya, but they are both exactly the same size, making the revell kit 1/24 not 1/25 as the box says.

Very nice Shay!  What color?  Got any pics?

I agree - the Tamiya body looks a little nicer (and would probably take less prep)...I wonder if the Revell chassis would fit under the Tamiya body?  I can't believe neither of them did the pop up headlamps - they're the best bit! :D

Tiny update, seeing as I'm replying anyway - started the paint process!  Just a very light coat over all the hard to reach spots and in the cracks and crevaces...but it's gonna look nice in this red I think!  The CLASSIC Miata color!

2v2EP2YZWxue8Lf.jpg

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The rear lights on the revell are just clear red, see if you can find the clear versions on the Tamiya from somewhere, also the wheels and tyres are much better, but the Revell is the only game in town for a full detail MX-5.

My one is British racing green, can't find any pics.

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I had no idea Revell even made one!!!, this is looking FANTASTIC!!!!

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I have and old one, but it's a recent repop. yellow paint with black stripes on the box art I think Dann.

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If you need reference pictures, I have one In the driveway. 

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Posted (edited)
On 4/30/2019 at 6:08 PM, dublin boy said:

The rear lights on the revell are just clear red, see if you can find the clear versions on the Tamiya from somewhere, also the wheels and tyres are much better, but the Revell is the only game in town for a full detail MX-5.

My one is British racing green, can't find any pics.

Just typed a super long reply and got the dreaded 404 error 🙄

You're totally right about the taillights - the Revell ones have this incorrect moulded-in detail that I'll be removing:

2v2EPwGoCxue8Lf.jpg

The Tamiya tires are WAY better too, yeah!

First Miata I drove was a BRG one - my buddies, with a hardtop and a tan interior.  I was in LOVE!  Took me ten years to finally get my own (a ratty NA with some terminal rot), which I then traded with a guy for a special edition NB in a nice gunmetal silver.  The NB definitely was quicker and handled nicer I though - but I still miss that Mk1 to this day!

Edited by CabDriver

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On 5/1/2019 at 3:56 PM, Dann Tier said:

I had no idea Revell even made one!!!, this is looking FANTASTIC!!!!

I'd LOVE to see what you'd do with one of these Dann!  😍

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8 hours ago, Dave Ambrose said:

If you need reference pictures, I have one In the driveway. 

That's super helpful, thanks Dave!  I'd love to see pics of yours just to see it!

That said, I spent yesterday trying in vain to find a good photo of the OEM stickers that I remember mine having under the hood.  I'm sure there was a white one that detailed the info on which lubricants to use, and there was maybe another one too.  I thought it would be cool to add those maybe - so if you have the hood popped anytime soon would you mind taking a look to see if yours has something similar and maybe snapping a photo sqaure-on so I can edit it in photoshop and print it myself?  That would be KILLER!  Thanks buddy!

 

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Great project; I believe the best NA model would be a mash-up combining Revell's running gear (engine, chassis) with the Tamiya Eunos Roadster or Miata kit. I like the Eunos variant as it's always been available, is molded in white, and has the hardtop (which IIRC is not in the molded-in-red Miata version).

I had a white '96 NA8 for 14 years, sold it to one of my best friends in 2013 and it's still going strong and essentially the best car I have ever owned. Currently have '06 NC. Have built models of neither...it's just more fun to jump in and drive B)  But I plan to build them...someday.

 

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Posted (edited)

I'm enjoying this. We had a 1995 M Edition. Beautiful car in Merlot Mica, tan interior, and BBS Wheels. It was a ball to drive. I'm afraid my wife had a close encounter with a tree and it was totaled. Luckily she was not seriously hurt but felt terrible because it was basically her car and she let me drive it occasionally.

Edited by bamadon

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1 hour ago, Zoom Zoom said:

Great project; I believe the best NA model would be a mash-up combining Revell's running gear (engine, chassis) with the Tamiya Eunos Roadster or Miata kit. I like the Eunos variant as it's always been available, is molded in white, and has the hardtop (which IIRC is not in the molded-in-red Miata version).

I had a white '96 NA8 for 14 years, sold it to one of my best friends in 2013 and it's still going strong and essentially the best car I have ever owned. Currently have '06 NC. Have built models of neither...it's just more fun to jump in and drive B)  But I plan to build them...someday.

 

Great info!  And yes, I absolutely agree - I want to build one of the Tamiya versions box-stock (ish) too, and then do a kit bash of the two.  I'm thinking of doing a blue one next, get a line up of all the original colors that were available in 1990...

90mariner.jpg

How do you like the NC compared to the NA?  I've never driven an NC, I'd be interested to see how one drives compared to the earlier models.  I was checking out the latest model ND last week...I kinda expected to not like it as much as I did!  Every generation they bring out seems to get a little further from the original concept of the car, in my mind...but as soon as I sat in it I was like "ohhh yeah, I'd drive one of these,  no problem!"  I'd love to see pics of yours if you have any!
 

28 minutes ago, bamadon said:

I'm enjoying this. We had a 1995 M Edition. Beautiful car in Merlot Mica, tan interior, and BBS Wheels. It was a ball to drive. I'm afraid my wife had a close encounter with a tree and it was totaled. Luckily she was not seriously hurt but felt terrible because it was basically her car and she let me drive it occasionally.

Ohhhh, I'm envious!  That is a GORGEOUS color!  Glad your wife was ok!  Those had a limited slip diff, if I remember rightly - my NB had one of those fitted from the factory too - it was a BLAST in an empty parking lot :D

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A small update, seeing as I'm messing with this thing today and was replying anyway...

The interior tub piece on this kit actually has three functions - it's the interior tub, the inside of the engine bay AND the underside of the trans tunnel all in one piece.  So, it's taking a little considerin' to paint it right.  I shot it with grey primer before realising that some of it needed to be red, so I masked the engine bay part and shot it with some Createx red sealer:

2v2EPKVe5xue8Lf.jpg

Used some tape to mask out a couple of bits I want to keep white:

2v2EPfvN5xue8Lf.jpg

And shot it with some trademark Miata red:

2v2EPfv5yxue8Lf.jpg

If you ever take the trans out of a Miata you'll see some body-color overspray in the trans tunnel over the underseal, so I let a little paint get in there too, not that it'll be super easy to see anyway...

I've been thinking of what I can do to bring out some of the detail in the underside of the hood too:

2v2EPfAdFxue8Lf.jpg

2v2EPfBpMxue8Lf.jpg

I'd like to do a more detailed build down the line that adds all this detail, but for this one I'm thinking of maybe trying to do something with paint to add a little depth maybe?  I'm nervous to do a wash in case it looks dirty, but making it look a little less flat would be cool.

More soon!

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3 hours ago, CabDriver said:

Great info!  And yes, I absolutely agree - I want to build one of the Tamiya versions box-stock (ish) too, and then do a kit bash of the two.  I'm thinking of doing a blue one next, get a line up of all the original colors that were available in 1990...

90mariner.jpg

How do you like the NC compared to the NA?  I've never driven an NC, I'd be interested to see how one drives compared to the earlier models.  I was checking out the latest model ND last week...I kinda expected to not like it as much as I did!  Every generation they bring out seems to get a little further from the original concept of the car, in my mind...but as soon as I sat in it I was like "ohhh yeah, I'd drive one of these,  no problem!"  I'd love to see pics of yours if you have any!

I plan to build a BRG and '93 LE someday, as well as finish the model I started of my own '96. The guy that bought mine has finished his model of it. I wish someone would do the Chaparral wheels that I had on mine, none of the various Panasport or similar wheels in scale are right. 

I'd love to take Aoshima NB and make a Mazdaspeed. Lava Orange would be the color for sure!

Here's when I had both cars for about 3 months:

2v2ok3RVqxvKa6.jpg

Here it is w/the new owner, he ditched the rear mud flaps and had Koni yellows installed so it sits a lot better now. It currently has a red OEM hardtop. Original soft top is still good but the rear window is shot:

2v2EPA4sFxvKa6.jpg

One of my best photos of my NC was when a couple buddies and I hit the Dragon on a Tuesday afternoon in July a couple years ago, we made the Killboy highlights. We thought it might happen w/the trio of True Red NC's and they always let me drive in front LOL. On our way back south on the Dragon we came up on a pristine stock early NSX driven pretty well but he let us pass as we were going faster. We saw the grins on their faces on Killboy's photos that evening, they were enjoying  riding at the back of our little red pack.

2v2E1bfq5xvKa6.jpg

As for driving the NC, I hated the looks with a passion when new. Now I love them, but they have to be lowered. I did new suspension which made a world of difference and bought NC2 used wheels from Goodwin Racing. My original OEM bumpstops have now failed 30k miles after suspension mods so I will upgrade the springs (again) to Progress Technologies & use FatCat poly bump stops. But first time I drove an NC was eye-opening, they had really improved the Miata dramatically, much stiffer structure, much more power, and the top operation is stupid-easy up or down from the driver's seat and when stowed it makes it's own tonneau cover. I have an ECU tune and new exhaust, so it's pretty quick, and it gets better fuel economy than my NA did (with about 40 more HP). Eventually I'll get a 2019-newer ND. Only have driven one ND a 2016 GT manual, didn't notice power increase on the short drive, driving position is better, and it leans a lot compared to my NC's upgrade. They are really nice. A friend is getting an orange 30th soon, trading in his 2018 ND Club w/Brembo package that replaced his beloved NC Club that was T-boned by an inattentive driver. He told me last week "the NC is a better daily driver, the ND is better for performance driving". 

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Gorgeous photos Bob!  LOVE seeing a nice Miata or two!  That photo of the three NCs is AWESOME!  What a cool shot!  I bet you had a BLAST!

The looks of the NC took me a while to get into - that comment you always hear about them looking boat-ish rings a little true - but I would LOVE one!  Actually, I think I'd like YOURS :D  Interesting too that it drives BETTER than an NA - I figured with the extra weight they'd be WORSE than the early cars - now I REALLY wanna drive one!

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