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The Momad


Custom Mike

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Here's my latest custom project, I had this idea years ago, and swapped with a friend for the Magnum kit, but never got the time, seems like some other Mopar (My Concept Charger) got all my attention! The talk of the Chrysler/GM merger a while back really got me fired up to do this one, so here we are. The plan is to take Revell's 2006 Magnum SRT8 kit, make it a 2 door, re-arrange the B and C pillars, make a new C pillar, add '57 Chevy style trim, and change the "truck" nose look out front completely. I'll need to make some new interior panels, and remove the arches over the wheel wells too. The color is going to be House Of Kolors Oriental Blue, but I may change my mind on that. Enough with the words, onto the pictures!

The box, I'm so good it looks just like the ones in the store, doesn't it? :D

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Sheet styrene added behind the wheel arches. I'll fill in the space between the arch and the sheet with Acrylic Fingernail Filler, then sand the arches off.

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The B pillar has been removed, and I'm preparing to cut the C-pillar and move it to it's new location.

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The C-pillar taped in place, it's going to become the new B-pillar soon.

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Here's our next batch of pics, the New C pillar is glued in place, some filler was added to the top side, and the door line was cut into it. I also reshaped the widow opening behind the C pillar, took the wheel arches off the driver's side, and added some filler to the back edge of the rear wheel well to match the rear fascia. It'll take some careful sanding to get it to match , but I like a challenge!

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I had to re-shape the top of the widow opening after removing the "C" pillar, it was just a little off.

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Here's where we add some trim to the smoothed out body. I've already added in my new C pillar using a strip of styrene, so I broke out my P.E. set from AMT's Pro Shop '57 Chevy kit, stole the insert for the side trim, and stuck it to the body with some double-sided tape. Then I grabbed some half-round styrene strip, and started making the trim. The hardest part was getting the bend in the upper piece, but a little heat and a lot of cussing made it work. After gluing it down, I cut the door panel and fuel filler door lines into it, checked the look against a '57 Nomad body, and primed it all up! The fun part was duplicating it on the passenger side!

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I came up with a stupidly simple way of duplicating my trim. I grabbed a 3x5 card, taped it to the rocker panel, and worked it into a pattern using my thumb to "dent" the card at the trim. Once the card was marked, I cut the top side off with some scissors, taped it to the passenger side, and laid out my lower trim piece. I did the same thing for the top side, taped it to the passenger side, and laid out the upper trim. Now I have matching trim, and it was way easier than I thought it would be!

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I'm sure you see the 'yellow' areas in the wheel wells, that's the Acrylic Fingernail Filler I use for my custom work. A real pain to sand, but once you've used it, nothing else compares!
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And now onto the back hatch. The '57 Nomad had 7 vertical trim pieces on it's tailgate, so I cut 6 equal-length pieces, and one really short piece to go in the middle above the handle. Tedious, but worth it once I got them in place. It is a near perfect match for the trim on the '57!

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The tiny pieces of half-round, it was real fun getting the six long pieces all the same size.
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Edited by Custom Mike
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Now onto the front end, this started out one way, and went in a entirely different direction. I started out by removing the grille all the way down to the bottom edge of the front fascia. I had made a vertical bar grille, but decided it looked horrible, so I went with plan B. What is plan B? I don't know, but I want it to sound like I'm thinking this through and not just getting lucky. I glued the hood to the front fascia, added some acrylic filler, then cut the front fascia at the bumper line. This made the hood roll down like a '57 Chevy, which really pulls the whole thing together. Here's the pics, I'd rather get lucky some of the time than be good all of the time!

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Here's where the real fun begins, a complete re-styling of my initial idea. I boxed-out the grille opening, and filled the HUGE gap in the bumper with two strips of styrene. Then came the acrylic filler, in copious amounts. Lots and lots of sanding ensued, and the big opening in the new "lower" part of the hood got a liberal helping of filler too. Here's the beginnings of a front end that looks absolutely nothing like the Magnum, for sure!

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The front edge of the "new" hood filled with Acrylic Filler and roughed-in. I've still got a long way to go on this piece.
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Test-fitting of the hood and bumper together. I've got one heck of a gap to fill between these two pieces.
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Edited by Custom Mike
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And here's where I take care of the big gap between the hood and bumper. This is why I love my acrylic filler, it makes stuff like this easy. I applied some scotch tape to the lower edge of the hood, taped it to the body, and filled the gap from the bumper up to the hood. Let it set for about 15 minutes, remove the hood and bumper, and start sanding it into shape. After about an hour, I ended up with what we have in primer. But we're not done yet, Sir Shaggy (A good friend from another Forum) had to make a suggestion, we'll get to that in the next posting!

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I put some clear tape on the bottom edge of the hood (Acrylic Fingernail Filler won't stick to Clear tapes), then applied some Acrylic Filler to the bumper, filling the gap completely. Now on to the sanding!

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First shot after shaping and rough sanding.

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And viola, a beautiful gap between the newly shaped bumper and hood. Looks easy, doesn't it? I wish!

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OK, here's where my buddy Sir Shaggy gets his props for suggesting a really good addition (By subtraction). He said I needed to add the little flared out lip that the '57's hood has. A little too late to flare it out, but I made it work with some careful sanding stick work. Here's the roughed-in work, more to follow!

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Edited by Custom Mike
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Since I didn't want the twin "gunsights" that the '57 Chevy has, I had to find something to do with the hood, it's basically a big flat piece of nothing at this point. So inspiration struck as I pulled up next to a Chrysler Crossfire. I stole the hood strakes from it, and put them on this one. The Crossfire has 7 strakes, but I felt 5 was more reasonable for the Momad, my car, my ideas! The first pic in this update is of the grille opening with some stainless foil in place to see how it looks, the the rest are of the hood. The last shot is the cleaned-up and primed hood, all ready to go! More progress tomorrow night, enjoy the pics!

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Edited by Custom Mike
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Nice job so far that bondo you use never heard of it before.Is it easy to use and can I get it here in Canada.

John Pol

John, you can find a small starter kit at Wal-Mart in the nail polish area, or go to a beauty supply store and they should be able to help you out.. As far as how to use it, I've got a Tutorial here showing how to do it step-by-step, check it out!

Acrylic Filler Tutorial

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Great craftsmanship! BTW, where did you get the mesh for the grill?

Thanks Virgil. coming from you, that's some high praise! The mesh comes from Commercial Smoke Detectors, I'm an Alarm Service Tech, so I snag them whenever I can find 'em. Unfortunately, the Smoke Detectors these come from went the way of the Dinosaurs about 6-8 years ago, the new versions have a cheaper fiberglass mesh in them, so I'm almost out of it. But I do know of a 12 story condo in Wilmington, NC full of 'em, wanna make a road trip!? cool.gif

Edited by Custom Mike
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LOL! Now you gonna have me looking for smoke detectors! :angry:

Make friends with someone in the Alarm Industry (Just not with ADT, they don't deal with enough big commercial stuff), and you might get lucky. The detectors this stuff comes from were made by Detection Systems and/or Bosch, and the part numbers were DS250, DS250-T, or DS250-TH. I've been in this business for almost 20 years, and these were the only detectors with this stainless mesh in them.

Edited by Custom Mike
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Bart, to me, the best looking station wagons ever made were the '56 & '57 Nomads, and the Magnum. When all the talk of a GM/Chrysler merger was going on a few years back, I had this wonderful vision of a Magnum done as a Nomad. So here we sit, cross-pollinating brands and ticking off the masses. My work here is done! laugh.gif

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WOW, I am very impressed. I was not sure about how the '57 chevy fins would work on this, but I guess it will be ok. I think pure Mopar styling ques would be more to my liking....maybe not having "cross-pollination" from GM to Chrysler, but hey, this is what makes the world go around....we all have different views. Anyway, I certainly can find nothing to say about the superb craftsmanship except it is truly impressive. Keep it going. :)

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Thanks guys, this one has had it's problems along the way, but I'm nearing the home stretch on it, and figured it was time to drop it on you finally. After my nightmare with modifying the interior panels on my Concept Charger, I decided I would go in a completely different direction on this one. Instead of trying to glue the front and back door panels together and making it into a 2-door panel, I decided to try my hand at scratch-building them. I started by cutting the center out of the existing door panels, and placed some sheet styrene behind the new "open" panel so I knew how much room I had to work with. Then I drew up something that looks like a '57 Chevy door panel, but modernized. I grabbed more sheet styrene, and made my raised areas twice for each element. This gives the panel some dimension, and stiffened the whole thing up.

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Here's where inspiration hit, why not keep the perimeter of the stock door panel, and make the center unit from scratch? Hey, it might just work!
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The backing piece on top, and the pieces I came up with to give the door panel some depth. The pieces in the middle will be glued on top of each other, and the bottom pieces will be glued onto those to make the arm rest area.
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Edited by Custom Mike
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OK, here's where I beveled the edge of the first "raised" part I added, then added the "arm-rest" over the top of the first part. I used a razor saw to cut the line in the arm rest, then cut one of the speaker mounts from one of my many scrap 2006 Charger door panels. A little sanding to get it to the right size and shape to fit, then it was attached to the new door panel, and the new panel was glued into the original kit's door panel "surround". The last step was cutting the door opening into the panel, and it's ready for some primer and paint. This way of making the new door panel makes the whole assembly fit into the stock floor panel and dash perfectly, because perimeter of the "stock" door panel was never changed.

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OK, in this update I've got my engine assembled, chassis completed, and done some minor modifications to get the rims tucked into the wheel wells some more. Here's some pics of the engine and chassis, along with my "stock" rim attachment points prior to modification.

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Edited by Custom Mike
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