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CabDriver

MPC Li'l Gasser Showrod (showtruck?)

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Posted (edited)
I guess this counts as a light commercial, right?
 
I've had this thing on my shelf for probably 10 years now...
 
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...and while I've never much liked the box art for this issue, but I did enjoy the Li'l Hot Dogger that I just build so I pulled it off the shelf and started to think what I'd do differently to make it a little cooler.  I definitely don't dig the gold chrome pieces, or those cheesy MPC front tires but the earlier issues of this kit had a cooler box art that inspired me to get going on it:
 
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First up, I did some digging thru my parts boxes and found some better front tires:
 
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Not sure what these are from, but they beat those kit tires anyway!  They're about a scale inch bigger than the originals, but I have a plan for that anyway...
 
Before starting on anything else I did the traditional first step of any build, gluing the engine halves together:
 
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This kit comes with a Ford SOHC, which I'm looking forward to putting together - more on that later when I've actually done some work on it.  I needed to get the block together so I could mock it up in the frame for the next step, so I got it as far along as I needed anyway...
 
Like all these big long kit frames there were some nasty sink marks along the outer edges, so I got them flat with my homemade popsicle-stick frame-side-sander:
 
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There were some prominent ejector pin marks in a couple of spots too, so I just cut a replacement piece to cover them up to save trying to sand in that awkward opening:
 
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Much better!
 
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The bed needed the same attention, so I did the same to that too:
 
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I wanted to drop the front of this thing in the weeds to give it a more aggressive look that how it comes out of the box:
 
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So I sliced off the spring perch and moved it up about 8 scale inches:
 
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Now we're talking!  Before...
 
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And after:
 
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A quick mock-up of the chassis to make sure the rear suspension would still assemble and have all the wheels touch the ground:
 
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And once I knew that was going to work a quick mockup of the cab and tank to make sure that was all still going to fit ok too:
 
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More soon!
Edited by CabDriver

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Very Nice! I like the Front End trick.

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Good start!!! I like this kit and even repro'd the original tires a few years ago......

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Your Gasser is lookin' good. I had built one of those kits several years ago and was happy with the way it turned out.

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On 6/24/2019 at 7:12 PM, Dave Van said:

Good start!!! I like this kit and even repro'd the original tires a few years ago......

Ohh, interesting Dave - I have another of these that I picked up on eBay a few years ago and it has a smaller set of black rubber/resin tires and 4 larger diameter ones too, seemingly made from the same material.  Maybe they're yours!

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2 hours ago, CabDriver said:

Ohh, interesting Dave - I have another of these that I picked up on eBay a few years ago and it has a smaller set of black rubber/resin tires and 4 larger diameter ones too, seemingly made from the same material.  Maybe they're yours!

Sounds like them.......are the rears BIG??  I sold 50 sets of them......Seled in poly bag. Thx

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On 6/28/2019 at 4:12 PM, Dave Van said:

Sounds like them.......are the rears BIG??  I sold 50 sets of them......Seled in poly bag. Thx

Yeah, the rears are maybe a quarter-inch bigger than the regular slicks that the ones that came with my eighties-issue of this kit...I put them aside as I figured they might be something rare or cool and they definitely didn't look like MPC put 'em in there:

2v2EVsVczxue8Lf.jpg

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Haha, amazing!  What a small world!  These big rears are SO MUCH cooler than the ones in the current kit box. 

I kinda don't want to use them because they're so cool - I figured I'd never seen a set before and might never see a set again so I put them aside for something REALLY special :D

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Thanks Mark!

Got some paint on this thing and started some assembly, so I figured it was time for an update...went with Createx pearl blue for the frame and engine (to kinda replicate the original box-art car):
 
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Looks pretty with some clear over it!
 
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I went with a mix of kit-chrome and various metal finishes for the engine parts - with an aluminum finish for the valve covers to match a 1:1 Ford Cammer engine like this kit has:
 
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I drilled out the kit's magneto so I could wire it with some Detail Master wire:
 
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And used some micro o-rings and some wire sleeve to make plug boots:
 
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I also added those photoetched Ford badges to add a little detail:
 
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Elsewhere, I removed the molded-in shocks from the front axle:
 
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And replaced them with some aluminum ones:
 
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The front headlamp lenses were missing from my kit, so I hit the local Chinese dollar store for some Googly eyes:
 
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Sliced the backs off to make dome-shaped lenses:
 
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And glued them in place with some Elmer's...the one on the right has been done, the one on the left hasn't yet.  Adds a surprising amount of detail!
 
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Whilst the glue was drying on those, I primed the tank for the back and hit it with a little Squadron filler to fill the seams (it's such a big part that I wanted it to be as perfect as I could get it...):
 
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And gave the tires a good scrub with some 80-grit to get them round, and take that gloss off:
 
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And then got the wheels mounted in there:
 
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More soon, soon as I've done more!
 

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I didn't want to try and stick the decals on those chrome side panels that you're meant to put them on - there's no way they WOULDN'T look bad, I didn't think - so I decided to put them on the side panels underneath the tank:

 
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I'll need to modify the chrome rail now, but I'd rather do that than have foggy decal-edge over a chrome panel anyway...here they are, still wet:
 
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And I hacked up the original decal's 'NO SMOKING' signs...
 
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...to make these for the back of the tank...this vehicle DEFINITELY stops for burnouts :D
 
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A little clearcoat and they looked pretty good!
 

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I gave the interior panels a coat of Createx dark blue and then gave them a wash to give them some depth, and shot them with some hairspray for a semi-gloss kinda leathery look:
 
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And it's starting to look like a thing!  Just need to assemble the cab and add all the doodads and it's pretty much there!
 
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More soon, soon as I've done more!

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A little more on this one...I wasn't super happy with the chrome on the headers/exhaust system, but I really didn't want to strip it and rechrome it and have just that one piece be a different shade of chrome to the other bits...
 
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So, I gave 'em some header wrap! :D I know you'd normally wrap the ENTIRE header, but I figured at least it adds a little detail and distracts from some of the lumpy chrome anyway...
 
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Then, flocked the floor, messed with the shifter a little and got the assembly on the cab started...
 
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Starting to look like a thing now!
 
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Just need to add all the remaining little doodads and whatsits and I can call this one done! :D

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