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Mooneyes Dragster


CabDriver
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Picked this up recently, and have been really excited to get going on it:

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Atlantis did a great job on this reissue - retooled some really nice tires (the rears, especially), and there’s a bunch of cool stuff in the box.

Here’s (one of) the 1:1s that I’ll be replicating:

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Going to do my best to replicate the original  car - the second replica car has quite a few differences, but the kit obviously best matches the original given the replica didn’t exist when the kit was issued 🤪

Today’s job was getting a start on the frame - cleaned up all those hard-to-get-to spots that needed attention and got it glued together.  I find with these multi-piece frames that it’s helpful to use some little dots of CA to ‘tack weld’ them together, then use a jig to get them straight as you can and hold them in place before using styrene cement to finish them up:

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That filler panel on the top of the roll hoop doesn’t exist on the real car, so I made a replacement hoop with brass, soldered the rear bar in place, removed the existing piece then drilled and pinned it all back together:

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The real car has a metal panel a little lower down on the hoop with wire mesh, so I replicated that with, well, metal and wire mesh:

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I can’t figure out if the car ever ran a parachute - I found pictures of it without one, and pictures of it with one…but I’d like it to have one, so I’ll need to mount a little plate to the back of the frame like this for the chute to attach to:

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Finally for today, spun up some aluminum rims and make some wire wheels - the Atlantis front kit tires don’t have any tread pattern on them like the real ones, so I swapped out the tires for spares from a couple of MPC trike kits…I’ll Alclad the wheels further down the line but I think they’re a nice improvement on the kit pieces:

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And that’s about where I got to today…more soon!

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Looking good. Nice mods.

Always liked this particular car and the period it represents, and have enough of the originals to keep me busy for some time.

Is the apparent warp in the frame actually there, or is it an image artifact caused by one of today's crop of lenses apparently designed by folks who generally seem to have no understanding of the concept of "optics" in the word's original context?

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I think all of those frames have always had a warp. I don't think Atlantis is charging any more for that warp, as far as I can tell. When I made my Mooneyes dragster from one of the original parts packs, the frame had a warp. I made a base and tied down opposite axles to keep all four tires on the ground at the same time... 

Glad to see of these being built from the new issue... -RRR

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Jim, I believe you have installed the front cross member in the frame upside-down. The two rectangular sections, should face up, as I think they were intended as the moon tank supports. Just rear of the cross member centre, you have the pin facing up. I think it should face down, as this is where the wishbone attaches.

 

 

Edited by Bill Eh?
clarity
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Thanks for the nice comments everyone!

9 hours ago, Ace-Garageguy said:

Is the apparent warp in the frame actually there, or is it an image artifact caused by one of today's crop of lenses apparently designed by folks who generally seem to have no understanding of the concept of "optics" in the word's original context?

I think the latter, in this case - my iPhone tends to make straight things less straight for the exact reasons you mentioned…I got it pretty level I think when I had it in the ‘jig’ (softwood sheet and push pins 🤪):

6D2047BF-E6E6-40DE-82B1-439629B0669F.thumb.jpeg.6b9510bbe5218a08c69afca87fc79f20.jpeg

Today’s fun started with making a front axle - the kit gives the option of a straight tube axle or an i-beam early-Ford style axle, neither of which is right for this car:

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The Quickchange that Revell tooled up for this kit way-back-when is really nice…too nice to modify into one to match the 1:1:

E0370C4B-024A-40F3-B7BE-A8DC425F98EE.jpeg.b9a8d2e1743ea58e9999e28481a1522b.jpeg

Never saw a chrome center section like that before - is it maybe just some covers over the regular QC center to pretty it up, a little?  Or maybe something more substantial to offer some protection in case that thing blows?

Either way, I cast another Quickchange center from my spares box and modified that to get closer to the reference pics I have here:

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Looks pretty basic…will add some more detail further down the road but it’s closer to the 1:1 now.

Same deal with the seat and head padding - the kit part was nice but inaccurate, so I scratchbuilt a replacement and started adding a tuck ‘n’ roll design to it with some styrene strip.  Once this has dried I’ll need to round off the corners of the strip to make it look more fabric-y and less square-edged:

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And with those few little jobs done (which took most of the day) I can see this little guy on his wheels for the first time - cute!

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Still plenty to do - got some missing bars on the frame to fabricate and install (whilst making sure they still fit inside the body panels), and then I really need to mock-up the entire engine so I can get it mounted just right before I get into painting anything. 

Anyone know if Moon uses a particular yellow for their cars, or just whatever old yellow they have laying around?  I’d guess it’s a manufacturer color by SOMEONE, but I have no idea…

Thanks for looking - more soon!

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39 minutes ago, Bill Eh? said:

Jim, I believe you have installed the front cross member in the frame upside-down. The two rectangular sections, should face up, as I think they were intended as the moon tank supports. Just rear of the cross member centre, you have the pin facing up. I think it should face down, as this is where the wishbone attaches.

 

 

Well darn, thank you!  
 

41 minutes ago, Ace-Garageguy said:

My originals don't.


Wait, for clarity - are we all taking about warp when you look from the side, or warp when you look from the top down?  This one definitely has some warp from the top-down view, but there’s a couple of supports that I haven’t glued yet that fix that issue (or, they did when I mocked it up anyway…).  The firewall goes between the rails and spreads them a little, as does the little motor mount bracket.  Hoping it all stays aligned when it comes time to glue it after paint…

Edited by CabDriver
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Jim, I am working on my kit too.  Maybe I should start a thread. LOL  The motor mount bracket part, as indicated in the instructions, is far too wide to fit between the frame rails. In fact I had to remove the triangular portions on both ends of the motor mount. This meant that I had to create new attachment point/supports for the motor mount. I made c-channel style supports, and glued them to the inside surface of the square plate sections of the frame. I hope you don't mind me interjecting this way.

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Jim, when I built mine years ago, Plasticoat Odds n Ends had small hobby sized spray cans that had a lemon yellow ( not sure of the name) that to my eye was a perfect match for  Mooneye's yellow.  I used up two cans on my Mooneyes projects but it hasn't been available in Oz for years.  Maybe it is still available in the USA?

For what it's worth, Hot Wheels, Matchbox, M2 and Johnny Lightening are all licensed to make 1/64th scale diecast Mooneyes cars and the colour varies considerably, even from the same manufacturer.  Some are close to Corvette Chrome Yellow - I would always go lighter if I had the choice.

Cheers

Alan

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13 minutes ago, Bill Eh? said:

Jim, I am working on my kit too.  Maybe I should start a thread. LOL  The motor mount bracket part, as indicated in the instructions, is far too wide to fit between the frame rails. In fact I had to remove the triangular portions on both ends of the motor mount. This meant that I had to create new attachment point/supports for the motor mount. I made c-channel style supports, and glued them to the inside surface of the square plate sections of the frame. I hope you don't mind me interjecting this way.

Don’t mind you interjecting at all!  I spotted that too, yeah - the motor mount is way too wide…the directions show that you should mount it to the motor, and then the motor to the frame, but I’m not sure if that’s really necessary.  I’m going along with it for now though.

Please do start a thread for yours  - I’d love to see it!

14 minutes ago, alan barton said:

Jim, when I built mine years ago, Plasticoat Odds n Ends had small hobby sized spray cans that had a lemon yellow ( not sure of the name) that to my eye was a perfect match for  Mooneye's yellow.  I used up two cans on my Mooneyes projects but it hasn't been available in Oz for years.  Maybe it is still available in the USA?

For what it's worth, Hot Wheels, Matchbox, M2 and Johnny Lightening are all licensed to make 1/64th scale diecast Mooneyes cars and the colour varies considerably, even from the same manufacturer.  Some are close to Corvette Chrome Yellow - I would always go lighter if I had the choice.

Cheers

Alan

Good tip, thanks buddy!  If I was close to somewhere with something painted Mooneyes yellow I’d go take a Pantone chart and match it from that…I have a bunch of different yellows here ‘in stock’ to choose from - I’ll likely end up with just a bright pure yellow unless I figure out something better in the meantime…

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Tiny bit more progress on this the last couple of days - I spent a couple of evenings hunting through old photos trying to find any pics I could of the 1:1’s frame without the bodywork in place so that I could see what little details I was missing.  Found ONE solitary picture on a photohosting site from ten years back:

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Now, I believe this is one of the frames that the replica car ran before they rolled it, but it’s the closest I’ve found to a good reference pic to use so I’m rolling with it…

From front to middle, added a little support brace behind the front crossmember, the two missing hoops atop the upper frame rail and brackets to mount the steering box and cowl steering setup.  
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You can see the little pinch in the frame that was being discussed above in the ‘passenger side’ rail there, but the motor mount brings that true when installed so I’m not too concerned at the sec…

Onto the back of the car, added the missing  supports and mesh under the driver’s seat at the back of the frame, plus I made some of the little brackets that the body attaches to on the real car:

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And finally, a quick test-fit of the body panels to make sure everything still fits - perfect!

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Im considering remaking that upper body panel with brass rather than clean up the kit piece - but I’ve also been looking for an excuse to buy a little vacuum former so this might be the trigger for that…

Just a small update, but it’s taken me half the week to get these few parts researched and finished…excited to get the frame far along enough to paint it!  More soon! 👀

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7 hours ago, Straightliner59 said:

Excellent work, Jim! I will get those reference photos posted in a few. Hope it's not too late!

Not too late at all - and those reference photos are GREAT!  You have REALLY helpful shots there of some angles I couldn't see previously - thank you so much!  Now I know what I'll be working on today :D

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