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CabDriver

1989 Mazda Miata

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I'd been wanting to build a replica of an early Miata for a while, and I saw the original 1989 Miata showcar on the Mazda display at the New York auto show a couple of months back and took a bunch of pics to make a replica of the first of these cars that the world got to see.  I used the Revell kit - from looking at pics online the Tamiya kit of the same model Miata looks a LOT better but is curbside, so I wanted to try one of these to get an idea of how it goes together and to see what I could learn about it for the next time I build one (or bash one from the Revell AND Tamiya kits).

The kit goes together ok - you need to remove about 1/16th - 1/8th of an inch from the bottom of the windshield or it won't assemble properly, and I removed about a scale inch from the subframes to get it sitting more like the ride height of a stock Miata too.  Even so, it looks a touch high, but then unlowered Miatas often do.

The bumpers don't fit on there well...actually, they fit GREAT, they snap right into place but the gaps between them and the body are a little big for my liking, the rear lights would be better off being replaced with some vacuum formed ones in clear plastic (so you can paint them how Mazda intended a little easier) or the Tamiya ones would probably fit pretty well too.

My kit also had a BUNCH of short-shotted parts - I had to make some engine parts from scratch, both of the windshield wipers were completely useless (so they're not on there, but that's not too obvious at least with the hood open, which is how I planned to display it anyway) and next time I do one I'd like to sand off those oversized doorhandles and get some more in-scale ones 3d printed.

That said, this was a fun build, and I miss my 1:1 Miatas, so it was cool to get to put one on my shelf!  I used Createx bright red paint for the body, replaced the Revell gauge decals with a photo-reduced copy from a real Miata, added some missing plumbing and wiring to the engine bay and used a couple of little photo etched pieces where a part was missing or looked a little clunky.  I'll definitely be building another, even with the various shortcomings that I didn't enjoy with this kit, and it makes me want to go blast around some winding roads on a warm day with the roof down!   Thanks for looking!

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I like this a LOT. You have really captured the essence of the 1:1 car. Like you, I miss my Miatas also. I very well may have to follow your lead on this one! Well done.

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Very nice!, I remember when they came out everybody had one or wanted one!!

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Posted (edited)

It's sits high too, but it's a great build!

Edited by Funkychiken

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Looking good, well done!!

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Nice work Jim I saw a gorgeous red one today with a hardtop. Looked like new.

I must get my BRG one going again.

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Great job, I followed your build thread and the kit was appearantly not without its flaws, but I like the final result.

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