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GMP440

Now that Modelhaus is gone are you more reluctant to buy that rare built-up missing hard to find chrome parts?

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Just wanted to read other's opinions on this.  You see that built-up model on the bay, but it's missing chrome parts that Modelhaus only made.  Does that make you think twice about buying that built-up?

Edited by GMP440

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NOPE!!     Didn't hesitate for a second.   I just bought it for the parts "I" needed.  Hopefully,  someone here will need what is left, for theirs!

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Yes, it does.

 

I always preferred to find original styrene parts and have them re-chromed, but there was always the option with Modelhaus in a pinch.

I just spent nearly 7 months looking for a set of grille inserts for an AMT '64 Bonneville!

A couple of years ago, I would have spent a month or 2 looking for originals and then most likely ordered from Modelhaus.

 

The way it is I wound up buying a built kit to steal the grille from and then had to sell off the rest of the model.

Nothing wrong with that, but it was much easier to order small parts from them if necessary.

 

As time goes by, it's very likely that originals are going to get increasingly difficult to find.

 

 

Steve

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For restoration - no. If it has the parts I need for another project - yes. The remains will be sold off if there's any interest....

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I've pretty much have everything I wanted after a few decades. But I see complete intact built-up prices going up. The vendors that break up vintage kits for parts are meeting a need, but that supply can't last too long. Not all those parts will sell, and more will break up kits, so supply diminishes and prices rise. 

Don and Carol did an amazing job filling a crater, not a niche. We all got spoiled, and sadly no one could carry it on on their scale or quality. 

It would be really hard chasing cars now. If you're not near any swap meets, even harder, as eBay only has a moderate pool of decent builders. Good luck to those trying. 

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It makes me think twice about how much to bid, mainly. Most recently I picked up a '57 Buick Roadmaster promo to get all the chrome parts for a rare styrene body; I'd watched several until I got a good deal. Like Duke I have pretty much my whole want list, and I've gotten better at casting with experience for the hard-to-find parts, so I'm good. (He says. :rolleyes:)

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It depends what the price is, I dont really care if its rare and if I've not built it myself I wont think twice about taking it apart. I've been lucky with some of my kits though, my rancher caddy came with a set of rechromed bumpers and the originals so if anyone needs a set of bumpers in need of chrome I have spares

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Yah, somewhat more reluctant now, but it's not a deal-killer. Depends on the car and the part. 

Last year I bought a distressed but not broken '67 Impala promo that was missing the front and rear chrome and the wheels/tires. The body polished out magnificently and I figgered I could always adapt the chrome parts from a "new" AMT kit.  But I got lucky and original front and rear bumpers (and taillights!) came up on eBay and I was fortunate enough to score them. (Good thing, too. Turns out the "new" AMT Impala parts would have been a pretty poor fit.) 

 Don't forget when looking for parts on eBay that glue bombs and damaged or distressed promos can be a great source of what you need. Bodies with smashed-in roofs, glue-smeared windows, or hogged-out wheel wells can still have perfectly usable front and rear chrome, and can sometimes be had dirt cheap. 

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Mostly yes, I will hesitate now, but to Snake's comments above, it depends on the car & the part(s) missing. I definitely hesitate now on older builts because of this. They are worth much less in my mind if they are missing critical pieces. Conversely, the values seem to have risen a bit because of the worth of the individual parts that are still there. I dislike having to buy a built just for a few parts.

The 1:1 "Junkyard Rule" applies, as in: "any car you find in a junkyard with either have the same parts missing as the ones you need, or those mechanical parts that are present will be just as damaged or unusable as the ones you are trying to replace".

There was a discussion on the Spotlight board about AMT '63-'65 Valiant kits. Mark (who also posts on this board) commented that the late Valiants are usually missing their rear bumpers and/or taillights. That is the absolute truth, you almost always find these with missing rear bumpers and taillights because those parts never installed very securely by design. Same with '68-'69 Coronets- they are almost always missing the front bumper, because that was always the first thing to fall off.

The Modelhaus' catalog grew and evolved over the years, so that eventually, they did offer some things that I had to wonder if they were worth offering, as some parts were much more readily available than others. They sold radiator shells & firewalls for some of the MPC B Body Mopar kits for instance- which you could always scavenge from later issues of those kits. I guess they were trying to make their catalog all-inclusive, but to me, some of the things that they offered didn't really fill a great need, while for certain other things, they were the only source.

If I happen by a '66 Fury and it's missing stuff, the only way I will be able to make it whole is to find another, or, somebody parting one out.

I am looking for a '68 Coronet body with a nice rear clip (tail panel, quarters, trunklid). Mine was firecrackered (not by me). It would be really nice if I could find one with a squashed roof, carved up front end, etc. but with a nice rear clip. If I can manage to rescue that body, I would try to make a Super Bee out of it.  

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5 minutes ago, CapSat 6 said:

I am looking for a '68 Coronet body with a nice rear clip (tail panel, quarters, trunklid). Mine was firecrackered (not by me). It would be really nice if I could find one with a squashed roof, carved up front end, etc. but with a nice rear clip. If I can manage to rescue that body, I would try to make a Super Bee out of it.  

There ya go! I have two first-gen Corvair coupes and a VERY warped promo 4-door, and I THINK between the three of them I have enough stuff to do one stock or stock-ish coupe, and one radical custom (which SamIAm) is waiting patiently to see). 

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I'll still buy stuff missing parts, but at a discount.  I'll either already have the part (in which case I can pay a bit more than someone else not having that part), or be willing to wait for the part to come to me, or in some cases cast the part from one I already have.

It hasn't materialized on any scale yet, but I thought some guys might start casting on a small scale.  Someone into early Corvairs for example might start doing parts they need, parts not often found in good condition.   They could then sell or trade the extras to pay the cost of the materials.  Hasn't happened yet on the scale that I had expected, but then again I don't watch eBay much anymore.

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11 minutes ago, Mark said:

I'll still buy stuff missing parts, but at a discount.  I'll either already have the part (in which case I can pay a bit more than someone else not having that part), or be willing to wait for the part to come to me, or in some cases cast the part from one I already have.

It hasn't materialized on any scale yet, but I thought some guys might start casting on a small scale.  Someone into early Corvairs for example might start doing parts they need, parts not often found in good condition.   They could then sell or trade the extras to pay the cost of the materials.  Hasn't happened yet on the scale that I had expected, but then again I don't watch eBay much anymore.

There you are :)

I had sort of thought that you would see "specialists"- as in, casters that specialize in a given subject or make take over as far as casting replacement parts. A caster that prefers Oldsmobiles casting replacement Cutlass stuff, for instance. What's offered is often dictated by the caster's interests. Again, Hart's seems to be jumping into the Mopar Muscle void, but I have seen little else by way of replacement parts yet. The new trends among casters seem to be: custom engine parts, tires & wheels, & custom hoods.

I am thinking of trying to cast some things I could use myself (valve covers, oil and transmission pans, hubcaps etc.) but I am limited to things that I can flat cast. I think the problem is that 2 part molds, while not impossible, are tricky for some people (even hoods would give me fits), and, the last time I attempted casting, I had a bear of a time casting anything that didn't have pinholes in it, or that cured completely. 

I'd love to cast a large supply of proper MPC '68-'69 Charger hoods, '69 annual grille inserts, and rear valence panels, along with the trans pan from either the Revell Dart or AMT '71 Charger. I think those Charger parts would go a long way towards improving the countless MPC '69 Charger reissues that are out there, as well as my own vast supply of these kits (I know - I have a problem!). The trans pans could be added to some of the earlier 727's that were kitted (the ones from the MPC '71-'74 Chargers, and MPC '70-'74 Cudas and Challengers come to mind). I wouldn't mind using these transmissions with a better pan on some builds rather than raid the Revell Dart and AMT Charger kits for their engines all the time.   

I just don't think you'll see anybody jump into the greater void that was left from the Modelhaus' exit. I think the prior generation of model hobbyist was more interested in restoring vintage 50's and 60's kits, and perhaps building them box stock. I think the newer participants in our hobby are more interested in building more contemporary subjects (that might be more widely available) and customizing / detailing them with custom parts, and the aftermarket is shifting to meet that new demand (in part because maybe the "old stuff" was less accessible and more expensive to begin with). There is nothing wrong with this, it's simply that times and tastes change.      

 

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3 hours ago, Snake45 said:

“Yah, somewhat more reluctant now, but it's not a deal-killer. Depends on the car and the part. “

X 2

Also, there are some unusual sources you can mine for parts. Back in the old days, there were “parts packs” that had engines, or bumpers, bodies, chassis, and these can sometimes be a source of much-needed parts. I just found a really strange source for one of my parts needs. I needed complete taillight assemblies for an AMT ‘62 Chrysler Imperial. Couldn’t find ‘em anywhere. One day I looking here on the Forum as one of the fellows shows the parts breakdown on his newly acquired pristine ‘63 Buick Electra AMT kit. Right there on the chrome tree, amongst the optional goodies, are the taillights I need! Apparently AMT had added them in the Buick kit as an optional add-on “custom” doo-dad ( the kind of custom stuff we all glued onto the model to make an unholy mess of them back in the day). So, I went shopping on evil bay, and got lucky immediately, found a kit buster who was selling parts from the ‘63 Buick kit. I bought the lot of “custom” parts; got the taillights I needed, and as a bonus got an under-dash A/C unit, water skies, etc.😁

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What methods do most of you use to safely dismantle the glue bombs since most were assembled with model cement?  I've seen interior tubs with the tabs broken off.  Would it be better to use a tiny drill bit to drill through the cement surrounding each tab?  

Have you salvaged glass with cement on it?  If so, how?

THANKS!

 

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4 minutes ago, Motor City said:

What methods do most of you use to safely dismantle the glue bombs since most were assembled with model cement?  I've seen interior tubs with the tabs broken off.  Would it be better to use a tiny drill bit to drill through the cement surrounding each tab?  

Have you salvaged glass with cement on it?  If so, how?

THANKS!

 

Most GBs can be disassembled with an Xacto, a small screwdriver for a pry bar, and some patience, experience, and finesse. In a couple of cases, though, I've had to grind glass or interior tubs out with a grinder bit in a Dremel. This takes a fine hand. 

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15 minutes ago, Motor City said:

Have you salvaged glass with cement on it?  If so, how?

I have heard of grinding down the glue blob, and polishing the imperfection out, but replacement seems to be the way to go for badly glued glass. 

For less curvy-windows, some modelers cut thin acetate sheet to fit and install it by carefully super-gluing it in, starting with a corner, and having it bend to meet the window surround. This gives you a much more realistic looking, in-scale (less thick and distorted) window.

I do know that painted windows can be chemically stripped of paint, much like other parts, with good results.    

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Like so many others I bought from Modelhaus with confidence that what ever I was getting would be the best quality that could be had. There will always be some poor casters I guess but there are many out there that are truly very good and great to deal with. The ones that I have bought from sight unseen are listed in the Forums Resin/After market section and none of those have been a problem. Ask other builders here of their experience with an unknown caster and that should give you a good idea of their products. There is still no substitute for holding it in your hand to examine the part and that's why I often buy at swap meets and model shows where you can talk to the caster and look over your purchase in advance. Many of use wish that Modelhause was still around but that doesn't mean that there is no one else doing quality work.   

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For me, I never got organized enough to place a Modelhaus parts order while they were active!   When I'd see them at shows  (we hosted them at NNL East for many years) I'd usually buy one of their complete kits.   And when they announced the end, again I didn't go through the dozens of old built ups I have looking for missing parts to order.   I did place a "last hurrah!" $300 order for a few kits.  So for me, it was just the comfort of knowing that they were there. 

image.png.7a88cada3cdefbe0ce700b42d387d80b.png

 

Here's a photo of a group of kits I once bought as a lot on eBay around 2006.  I remember that the lot was poorly described and I was amazed when I got it with a low ball offer. It's all early 60s annual built ups in boxes.  I was equally amazed when it arrived that nearly every kit had a complete set of Modelhaus chrome in them.  I figured that alone cost the original owner more than I paid for everything.   So I wonder how much of that Modelhaus gold will never get used on restorations anyway.

And as others have said, I don't think we will see a vendor of this class again.   

Edited by Tom Geiger
fixed photo

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On 1/13/2020 at 11:49 PM, StevenGuthmiller said:

I just spent nearly 7 months looking for a set of grille inserts for an AMT '64 Bonneville!

And now that you've got them, ain't this the way it ALWAYS happens?

https://www.ebay.com/itm/AMT-1964-PONTIAC-BONNEVILLE-ORIGINAL-GRILLS-NOS-KIT-6614-CIRCA-1964/333479550924?hash=item4da4ee1fcc:g:sI0AAOSwBYpeHSo6

1574007276_64pontiacgrilles.jpg.bf2cc2ff3e61e7a9a81f5af7b6c0954a.jpg

Edited by ChrisBcritter

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LOL, I saw those too. Always the way. Was going to PM that link to Steve. Once I have a coupe or convertible, I end up needing the companion.

Weird story-bought an awesome built 63 Merc convertible, stock save for custom front seats. Don didn't make stock seats at the time, surprisingly. Was going through parts, and found stock seats for it. Only time I bought a model that I had parts for prior to the car. 

 

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6 hours ago, ChrisBcritter said:

Funny thing is, they are not the only ones!

Within hours after I had purchased the built up, I began getting messages from members with ebay links to a set of Modelhaus '64 Grille halves!

It never fails!!!

But, in the end, it will all work out.

I will have the parts that I need, regardless.

 

 

Steve

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I do not know if I am going to buy incomplete current kits anymore,using a AMT 34 Ford p/u as the base for a big truck and  I probably have more in it then just buying one.   Bought a partial 60s version then started buying parts off ebay that is was missing and had to get more parts tonight.

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15 hours ago, DukeE said:

Weird story-bought an awesome built 63 Merc convertible, stock save for custom front seats. Don didn't make stock seats at the time, surprisingly. Was going through parts, and found stock seats for it. Only time I bought a model that I had parts for prior to the car. 

 

I once bought a bag of parts for the Revell large scale slant six engine. I recognized the valve cover, and even though I didn’t even own a kit I thought it was cool to own the bits for $10.

A year or two later I found a “complete” slant six in its original box on eBay and was the successful bidder. Upon receipt I found it wasn’t nearly complete. But oddly it needed most of the parts in that bag!

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