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Because I don't know much about this industry


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I have some questions.

1)  Why are the model producers not making more 4 doors, wagons and every day drivers?  I know the SS and the hardtop, 442's, etc are more popular as they were more desired, but surely there is a big market for these every day vehicles out there.  I keep seeing, while eyeing around Pintrest, old kits of 4 door wagons, full sized vans with rows of seats, dually trucks etc. and am wondering why these seem so rare today. 

2)  I just saw hpiguy do a review of the Amt 65 Coronet. It is a snap/ press fit kit with more detail than a lot of their other kits.  I understand Revell Germany also has a couple VW van kits built this way as well.  Is it possible all kits could be done this way?  It would may this hobby much more safer as the glues are usually the most toxic part aside from some of the paints used.

3)  Amt has done a great job putting out some of their older, more unique kits. Would it be possible to tweak a few things to freshen them up. For example redoing a tired interior tub that has very little detail such as found in that lovely 63 Chevy II wagon.  Or maybe redoing one of these curbside/promo kits with everything molded in and screws to attach to the body.  In my opinion the interior would be good to redo even if a vehicle is a curbside as one can see the interior with out lifting the model up for a close look. Some of the Japanese kits have no engine but still have highly detailed interior.

Just to say I'd like to give a shout out to some companies that are getting things right.  Amt for their awesome pad printed tires and sturdy boxes. I have many kits on the go that come on and off the shelf and many cheap boxes literally fall apart.  Some of these Amt kits have great boxes with great box art. Not a reason to buy a kit but a great bonus.  And oh yes, their addition of many extra parts which I know everyone loves. So cool to get extra tires, decals, a mini bike, tool box, etc.

Revell and Moebius for their super detail in their newly tooled kits. I wish Revell would add extra parts options. Happy to see Moebius making some cool vintage AFX cars and their dual wheel car hauler. Other flat bed and wrecker versions are on the way I understand. 👍

I have a couple of those Trumpeter kits. Metal springs?  How awesome is that!!

Imagine if these companies put all their best qualities together. But I really want more kits of those old station wagons and 4 doors I grew up with in the 70's.  Just saying.😉

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4-doors were generally follow-ons of dealer promos. There are still some very nice repops available, of the bodies anyway. There's also vintage resin, but they're getting pretty spendy now that Modelhaus is gone.

The 2-doors and performance versions of just about everything were what most guys actually wanted, even if they had to buy 4dr strippers to haul the wife and kids...so the model manufacturers fed the fantasy.

But some of the older kits are indeed being re-released, and "freshened", with manufacturers going so far as to 3D scan original kits to reproduce injection-molding tooling that's long lost.

Far as your other questions go, it's expensive to design and make tooling, and kit manufacturers, like any other business, try to appeal to the largest market segment to achieve the best return on investment.

It's a relatively small group who want 4-doors and wagons.

 

Edited by Ace-Garageguy
CLARITY
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I hear what you are saying. Personally I get tired of the same old Hemi cars etc.  It gets to be a bit much. I'm happy to see at least some of these old Chevy II kits etc.  As a guy who loves detail, I'm learning to embrace the curbside.  It's actually nice to be able to put something together quickly with out scratch building stuff. However I did scratch build window and door handles for the Chevy II wagon as it had basically nothing for detail on the door skins. I also did arm wrests and handles for the Dodge d100 pick up and the 4 door 70 Galaxie kits. For the money you spend on a kit (here in Canada at least) I'd prefer not to have to scratch build basic details like this.  I'm also having to fill in gaps between fenders and grills often these days. That is why I am loving these new tooled kits cause you can relax and build.  All the detail is there pretty much.

I hope that Amt and who ever else reissues some of these awesome older kits I keep seeing like the  panel vans, 4 doors, wagons and dual wheel wreckers etc. I'm guessing if they do, I can expect there to be a lower level of detail for many of these kits.  I hope the price is adjusted for this. After all they are not spending the money for putting whole new kits together.  Maybe Amt is trying to make up for this by throwing in the extra parts?

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I'd take more two door sedans for that matter but 30's-50's. I know I'm probably the odd man out on this but I love the old hump trunks I guess. Something different than coupes and roadsters. But the modeling market itself isn't enormous to begin with, never mind the odd stuff. Well unless it was popular odd stuff.

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I think with the advent of 3D printing a builder can create whatever body style they want. As Ace mentioned, building the molds and creating a new kit isn't cheap and a company has to turn a profit and that means selling many kits from the tooling. Many here are 3D printing some interesting body styles along with a lot of other components, and body styles that may not sell enough kits for a mainstream company to turn a profit.  

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To build upon your -- the O.P.'s -- enquiries regarding four doors and wagons: 
I've noticed that many four doors are most popular in Australia; not sure if wagons are; UTE's are also popular. 
Certainly, this doesn't speak to the U.S. market nor its manufacturers. None-the-less, the popularity of the AMT Nova Wagon belies this -- a kit which, in stock form, was thought (however correctly) to be lost forever. Its tooling was heavily modified in c.1967 to the Funny Car version which was reissued periodically until a few years ago (I'm sure that the core of that iteration is still around... someone'll correct my information, please).

Perhaps one of Round2's, et alia, finest offerings is the (pending) 1968 Coronet R/T Convertible! Another long gone and highly desirable kits for absolutely decades now! AND it's a marked improvement over the original kit (MPC, 1967) in every imaginable way! IIRC, the hardtop version is due sometime in '23 as well.

You're not alone in hoping for more everyday man vehicles; of more base models. The Revell 1966 Chevelle Wagon --phantom that it is with the 396/4-speed and SS bonnet-- is an excellent basis for a more pedestrian representation (6 cylinder, small V8, etc., etc.). 
Personally, I'd love for Revell to issue their 1968 Chevelle with a two door coupe body with 300 Deluxe (base model) interior, and throw in a correct L79 for good measure. then, likewise, the 1969 version could receive the same treatment, but with the SS-396 (the only year for the SS-396 being an option package on the two door coupe (sedan, et alia) with 'taxi cab' interior). 

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4 hours ago, tbill said:

The SS was a ‘body style’ at least thru 1969, not an option package, as denoted by the vin sequence, SS chevelle vins started with 138, the ‘38’ denoted the body style. Just random info….

1969 Chevrolet Chevelle SS 300 Deluxe | S142 | Indy 2021 (mecum.com)

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8 hours ago, 1972coronet said:

Thank you for that information, I didn’t know you could get a 300 deluxe in an SS configuration, was this a 69 offering only? On a side note, I think I’ve only seen two 300 deluxe cars in person, one was a 66 and the other a 71.

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3 hours ago, tbill said:

Thank you for that information, I didn’t know you could get a 300 deluxe in an SS configuration, was this a 69 offering only? On a side note, I think I’ve only seen two 300 deluxe cars in person, one was a 66 and the other a 71.

I wasn't aware of the 1969-only "package" until fairly recently myself. I read an article about one which was sold through Nickey -- base 325hp 396, 4 speed, taxi interior, etc.

It was a 1969-only offering. Next time the SS found its way onto non-hardtop two doors was 1973.

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17 hours ago, tbill said:

The SS was a ‘body style’ at least thru 1969, not an option package, as denoted by the vin sequence, SS chevelle vins started with 138, the ‘38’ denoted the body style. Just random info….

138 VINs ended with the 68 model year.

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I understand alot of the wants going on in this thread...

When I say this I mean absolutely no offense to anyone at all...

I personally make a distinction between a model builder and a modeler... for those who like kits that "fall" together over anything else... and don't want to kitbash/ scratch build missing details or just add additional detail, those folks are model builders to me.

Then, a modeler is someone who doesn't necessarily look at a kit for its engineering so much as they look at the box art or 1:1 photos and then do what is neccessary to meet or exceed that result. That's what modeling is all about.

There's nothing wrong with either of these philosophies, but they are two separate things in my opinion.

I personally enjoy a quick simple build sometimes... but mostly I enjoy getting into the minutia of trying to add details or make adjustments that maybe no one would ever see or care about but me.

Perhaps I'm alone in those feelings.

3D/resin printers are the way forward for the obscure folks.

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I like to do scratch building. I usually end up doing a little or a lot to every build I do. The issue I have is the older kits have very soft interior details.  Some cases there is no handles or arm rests etc. So even if I wanted to do a curbside for an easy quick build, the interior needs work that turns an easy build into a chore.  I do realize that the older kits get worn and the detail bar was probably set lower then.  That is why I was wondering if it were possible to tweak a few of these reissues.  I understand some bodies have been tweaked due to buyer demands. I admit I don't really have a good understanding of how these kits are made.

On the topic of 4 doors and wagons etc.  I have a 66 Chevelle wagon, a couple Chevy II wagons, a couple 70 4 door Galaxies and a 4 door 67 Impala.  And there are a few more out there like the 65 Chevelle wagon and the MPC 78 Dodge Monaco. So I guess maybe there is some sort of demand for these cars.  Maybe it would be practical for the kit manufacturers to do a few "every day" vehicles with modern details. Throw in some drag and custom parts like they Round 2 have been doing, as well as  maybe other extras that makes a kit more versatile like company logos and tools. The Revell 57 Del Rio is a nice kit with good detail. I think it sold well?

Looking again at Pinterest, here is some past kits that were made of "every day" cars;  MPC 70/71 Ford Econoline,  MPC Dodge Sportsman (van), Jo-han 73 Olds Custom Cruiser (wagon), MPC Open Road Pick Up Camper, Amt 64 Chevelle Wagon, Jo-Han 61 Olds Station Wagon.  They likely wouldn't have made these if there wasn't interest in the subject matter. Has anything really changed in 2022?  Round 2 wouldn't have reissued the 65 Chevelle and Chevy II Wagon if they thought they'd loose money. Gosh I love those pad printed white walls!😉👍

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Yeah, I'm also tired of Hemis,give me a 318. To quote Tim Boyd, "I was told that 1960's era drag racing kits are among the hottest selling kit topics these days, surpassed only by 1960's/70's pickup kits." I belive that the fact that pickup kits sell so well is enough because many people want to build simple cars that can be varied in a different way than, for example, unique Hemi cars. Another quote from this forum, Four door modeling is the salt and sugar of modeling, I agree.

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I've been wanting model companies to make 2 door "regular" cars for years. I get that the SS versions of cars or the high performance versions are exciting but want your average car now and then. The family car. Ones with bench seats, etc.

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It is all about Sales.

Hemi's get them in, 383's get them sold.

Since this business started off, catering to the OEM's, giving toys to Jr. to sell cars, much of what has happened since must be understood that way. This dictated choice of Body Styles (Most Popular/Expensive) and Trim Levels (Highest) Those may not be the cars that got sold, but those were the cars that the OEM wanted the potential buyer thinking of. Thus, the cars you see modeled from 1958 to about 1985 or so. There were exceptions, but they are just that, Exceptions. Rarities.

Of, course Model Car Companies(AMT, Revell, Mpc. & Monogram) Finally began to acknowledge the existence of the Adult Modeler in the late 1980s/early 1990's (AMT's 1966 Chevelle) but still had a long way to go. We are getting more and more kits directed at (Us, the guys who really buy them) and fewer kits directed at (Big Box Purchasing Managers, & Assorted Corporate Buyers) . It is a slow improvement. Will we see more of the cars and trucks that "NoName" wants?  My Guess is, only at the margins. Todays Model Companies are relatively small compared to the Behemoths of Yore, and so cannot tool up kits that cannot make a "First Pass Business Case" for several variants and brand extensions very often. The Upcoming Round2 "Green Hornet" seems to swim upstream against this, but it is aimed at the Collectibles Crowd, more than Modelers. MY guess is that 3 out of every 4 Green Hornets sold will never be opened by the original purchaser. But look at what Round2 Has Chosen to spend new tooling dollars on? A 2021/22/22 Dodge Charger Four Door, & a 2021/22 Bronco Two Door. 50% of Round2's New Kits for next year are 4 doors. So, the changes in the industry are happening. 

A new Golden Age is dawning. 3D Printing, Smaller runs of Cloned Kits that have not been see in 40 or 50 years. Great Decals.

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As I understand it, the AMT 1940 Plymouth Coupe was created as part of an agreement (likely, contractual) with Richard Petty, et al., when AMT wanted to model his then-current Pontiac Stock Car.
I can't imagine that AMT - or anyone - would've gone through the trouble of R&D of a 1/25 scale Plymouth Coupe on their own volition.

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On 11/12/2022 at 7:30 AM, noname said:

Jo-han 73 Olds Custom Cruiser (wagon)

That was never a real model kit, just someone's "air box" idea.

38d853cc0a188898cfe2908191eecc9f.jpg.7f30ca81839bfa1818ccaab9b7181fd0.jpg

Before anyone starts looking for them - there were never any models produced of Rockford's Firebird, Newhart's Oldsmobile Delta 88, or Alf's Ferrari 308 either, so don't ask.

Rockfordmodelbox-648x327.jpg.4210e896660f755434c4f449c7fe3f63.jpg

1304612058752772498.jpg.df355ee3a6ce18cb4d68624b4c79772a.jpg

1304612058340634002.jpg.8f98175cc378a78fc26a39c1e736b03e.jpg

Edited by Oldcarfan27
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3 minutes ago, Oldcarfan27 said:

That was never a real model kit, just someone's "air box" idea.

Before anyone starts looking for them - there were never any models produced of Rockford's Firebird, Newhart's Oldsmobile Delta 88, or Alf's Ferrari 308 either, so don't ask.

All were products of Everett "Boxman" Westphal a great Artist.

https://www.bonediggers.com/2-2/boxman/boxman.html

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3 minutes ago, stavanzer said:

All were products of Everett "Boxman" Westphal a great Artist.

https://www.bonediggers.com/2-2/boxman/boxman.html

The Rockford one was, but I think the others were by someone else. Not his artistic style and not on his list.

I found the others on a Jalopnic site.

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Oh yes I think I read somewhere else on this forum that the above Olds Custom Cruiser was not real. Too bad, it'd be so cool. Like I say, have a look around on Pinterest of old kits, you'll see a good handful or two of the"every day" vehicles and other odd balls.  Round 2 has actually re-released a number of them.  There must be a market for these things as there has been a small handful of 4 door, wagons and commercial type vehicles released in the last few years.

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