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Two 1932 Ford five window coupes

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In 1:18 scale, MotorMax makes two versions of a 1932 Ford Five Window Coupe. Their Coupes have steerable wheels, rear sprung suspensions, opening doors and large wheels in the rear and smaller ones up front. The interiors have a "rod and piston" gear shift lever, a bench seat, silver-rimmed gauges on the dash and a chrome-accented steering wheel. 

Both Coupe bodies are "cut from the same cloth", apparently from the original mold, and are, in essence, identical except for one major difference. And that difference is huge. One body has no hood and an exposed, well formed engine. The other body has a fixed hood with a non-accessible partial engine block underneath. The version with the exposed engine has beautifully chromed headers, four carburetors and other nicely chromed engine parts. One the other hand, the hooded version Coupe is basically "sealed"; its hood is attached at the factory by a hidden screw under the chassis.



 I really like the look of a street rod with an exposed engine. However, it wasn't until I actually removed a bought-on-line 1:18 scale MotorMax '32 Ford chopped top 5-Window Coupe from its box that my initial impressions were solidified somewhat. Before this, I had only seen the generic picture of it on the internet. And my impressions were not all that favorable. What struck a nerve mostly was the ride height and stance being too high, and secondly, a forward-leaning radiator grille which caused the car to appear contorted. Both of these aspects made the model look sufficiently "off", so much so, that after having the model in my hands and seeing some of the more toy-like and sort of 'cheesy' aspects of it, I was very close to returning it.  However, I felt that with some modifications the car could possibly be redeemed.


The first step was to lower the front end as much as possible. Ideally, lowering the entire car  would have looked better.  Yet the rear end is supported by, surprisingly, actual working springs which, when depressed, lowers it.  So I left the rear end as is.

Next, the radiator grille was realigned so that it was roughly parallel with the firewall, eliminating that distorted look. This short sentence of what was done belies the fact that it took many trials and errors to get the final finished result.


The model was completely disassembled so that the exhaust pipe tips could be silvered and the rear differential hub treated likewise. MotorMax should have chromed all these parts for an authentic street rod touch. Inside, the foot pedals and door handles were silvered and the holes in the steering wheel spokes blackened.  Kudos to MotorMax for the gear shift knob in the form of a piston and rod, which looks the part.  The chrome rubber gasket on the floorboard was blackened to add realism. The four slots in each chrome wheel were blackened; the radiator grille was blackwashed and the radiator cap silvered.  Other engine parts were detailed and colored. Thanks, MotorMax for doing a good job with the chromed firewall, chromed engine parts and the chrome wheels. The chrome metal support rods running from the firewall to the radiator grille is a cool touch, too.



MotorMax could have and should have included big rear slicks and lettered tires on this street rod. They did make the rear tires bigger than the fronts to their credit. Two other faults are the vent opening on the engine cowling being merely a painted-on silver rectangle and the inexcusable sealing of the trunk lid eliminating the inclusion of a rumble seat or any trunk detail.


In conclusion, I had my doubts about this mpdel, but after doing work on it, I feel much better.  It's no GMP by any stretch of the imagination, no matter how hard you try.  But it does have some redeeming qualities to it after all the work that was done.



 I also am fond of the slick look of the '32 Coupe with a hood, too. So this hooded version of the MotorMax model intrigued me when I found one on-line at a good price.  How did MotorMax model the engine, if they even did? Would it be the same engine as in the hoodless version? What is under the hood is quite important if a street rod is the actual subject matter of a model. MotorMax left just one-half the engine (from the hoodless version) inside the model and screwed down the hood. The engine was destined from the factory to be non-existent and a non-factor in the model.








And not being able to view an engine, the heart of any street rod, that just doesn't sit well with me.  Sure, AutoArt and other high-end model brands produce excellently detailed sealed models, and as such, they can usually get away with doing this because they are so finely made, look so good and cost accordingly. But we are talking about a budget brand here (MotorMax) that cannot legitimately justify sealing a model based entirely upon its quality detailing because, quite frankly, there just isn't enough detailing to warrant it.  Which brought me to the point wherein I was compelled and duty-bound to free up the hood by unscrewing it from the chassis and cutting off the huge diecast mounting post cast into it. This overly-engineered post was poking through the lower engine half and had to be removed to allow work to be done to complete the upper half of the engine since the lower half couldn't be removed from the chassis. This also allowed the hood to now be positioned easily and repeatedly so that trial and error measurements of the upper engine parts could be made.


Since my 1:18 scale parts bin is no larger than a thimble, the upper half of the engine was all scratch built as well as the upper half of the firewall.The upper firewall is covered in metallic adhesive tape.  Aluminum tubing was used for the velocity stacks. Distributor is from a random product packaging cap of some sort. Rubber sprue sections (from a diecast model kit with rubber parts) formed the headers as space was very tight in the engine bay. Cardboard served as the base for the intake manifold as well as the radiator fan. Plastic sprue was used to make the pulleys, the breather cap, the alternator, the radiator hose, and the parts on the firewall. A small metal bracket for the alternator came from a ball point pen clip.  And the valve covers are from a split-in-two plastic ball point pen casing and age-old 1:24 scale AMT decals.  The fan and alternator belts are black paper strip. The grille was blackwashed. Outback, chrome-plated brass tubing used for the two exhaust pipe extension tips. The suspension was lowered some. And the rear differential was silvered. And oh, a blue dot added to each taillight!















Thanks for looking and I hope you enjoyed it.......





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Very interesting. Looks like at some point it might have been Milner's AG coupe. 

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I agree with Snake- this is the Motormax clone/ripoff of Ertl's AG Milner coupe.   Looks like Monogram's TRX tread pattern on the front radials.  Or maybe a larger repop of the Revell diecast?   I sold my Revell but still have 2 Ertls, on signed, one unsigned.

Good work fabbing up an engine.

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