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Mark Martin 1983? #2 RECO Firebird


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Back in the early nineties, Racing Champions produced a lot of 1/64 diecast. One of the series was Short Track Champions. There were eight cars of drivers I'm aware of at this time. Seven were on cards ( Mark Martin, Ernie Irvan, Davey Allison, Harry Gant, Butch Miller, Rusty Wallace, and Dick Trickle) and one was a limited edition in a clear plastic box (#28 Alan Kulwicki) They all used the same body, a 1982 Camaro and resembled a typical late model/ASA type short track race car. I bought all but the Kulwicki car as collectables and Mark Martin car for my son who had become a fan after his first two favorite drivers died in quick succession. So, a few weeks ago he asked if I remembered the little car (text). Now I've just recently been through all my collection, so yeah, it's pretty familiar. He shows me a picture of his (he still has it after around twenty five years) and wants me to build a model of it if I can. No pressure! I'm thinking I know in the early 2000's Action made some Mark Martin diecast of his ASA cars, maybe it's already out there. I take a look at everything I can find online and they are all Gen 2 body styles, incorrect paint scheme and the car he wants is clearly a Gen 3 body style. Fortunately, Revell made several great models of the Gen 3 cars back in the '90s. I had built them all and this would be no problem. All I had to do was get one and some decals. I thought the decals were going to be the absolute biggest headache. I searched online for anything and noticed there was an all white T-Bird that would occasionally pop up with decals that were close. I just needed to find some. A couple of weeks ago, They popped up on eBay with a buy it now and I did. They're not great, but they're better than nothing and better than I can paint. Now I just needed a kit. I saw a bunch on eBay, but they were all way more than I thought they were worth. Then I remembered we have a Wanted section on this Forum. After posting I got a PM and much thanks to another member, made an easy trade and viola! I've got everything to get this puppy started. Along the way I did a lot of studying on the one picture I have of the car. It's the one with the diecast and discovered it's a Firebird! So, this means I will have to modify the front end of the Camaro to look correct, the back is a BLAH_BLAH_BLAH_BLAH shoot, because I don't have a picture.

Here's my Racing Champions Mark Martin Short Track diecast

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What I got

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Edited by THarrison351
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  • 4 months later...

I have been slowly and I mean slowly working on this. I cleaned everything in Wesleys and then commenced to assembly. I also at this point started the work to fill the Camaro identification in the front.

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This is a better picture of what I'm building.

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It's hard to find a good picture on the net of the third gen ASA or late model Firebird front ends. There always low resolution from far away or side profiles.

Here's where I'm currently at with the body and hood. Some work with additional plastic strips for better edges. I put some primer on it to give me a better visible feel. I need to add more filler below the leading edge of the bumper. The hood needs some more filler, a center peak the center trailing edge cut and then two new creases from the aft corners to the center.

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  • 6 months later...

Updates since March. A lot of overtime at work has really slowed down progress. I finally got the front end and hood acceptable for my needs and put some color on the body. All of the parts were painted and detailed. I've assembled the chassis and decided to add a window net and seat harness. I thought I had a photo-etch seat harness leftover from years past, but either it was in a started kit that was sold, or is still misplaced. So, one is on the way from eBay. 

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Base paint

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Initial detail painting

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Chassis built, I was using the old built model for reference because some things were frustrating me on alignment during assembly. Still a great kit to build. If Atlantis has possession of the dies for these, it would be great to see them released again. 

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A comparison of the front end changes. Yes, I know the hood is not like the actual car. I started sanding an angle groove like a Firebird's, but I didn't like the look so I filled it back in and went with flat. My son won't care and it's not going to be a contest model or have the correct graphics. It'll be fine.

 I was able to polish out the windows, they're just set in place. I'm waiting for the paint to cure before I paint the inside black, add the blue stripe, decals, and detail the body.

An observation I've found interesting while building this kit. It appears it was released with two hoods. The one I built when it was originally released looks like the real car with the Z-28 hood scoop. This kit, the other two versions, the one built for the box art, and several others I've seen online have the standard hood. More to come hopefully later this week.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I finished the improvised decals, painted the interior and around the windows. The chassis is done. The harness I bought off eBay was a total bust. The seat belt material would not fit through the hardware. Fortunately, I had a seat belt decal that worked out. I need to let the decals cure before I seal it with Future. Then it's on to final assembly.

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