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chopping tutorial

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I just got an AMT 49 Ford and after poking around extensively on the HAMB forum, I've decided to try my very first chop top. But I would like some experienced direction. Has anyone done a tutorial on chopping this kit?

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Unless you REALLY want to do it yourself, I recommend spending $15 or so and get Jimmy Flintstone's chopped '49 Ford body. My time is worth the price.

!B6YGjPg!Wk~$(KGrHqIOKi!EyScB(Qk(BM)I4,GDT!~~_12.JPG

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I did my first chop recently but it was on a 32 Ford. I would recommend starting with that as it is relatively easy before tackling the 49.

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Mark Gustavson did a multi-part how-to in Car Modeler magazine about 20 years ago, using the AMT '49 Ford. Really informative, and Mark REALLY knows his stuff. I'll see if I can find them if you're interested.

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ya lee that would be sweet man i think everyone can benefit from it

Edited by Blake Rogers

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ya lee that would be sweet man i think everyone can benefit from it

I can't copy and post it here. See me offline for more info.

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uh-OH First I see a post from you on SHMB and now here. There's a full moon here in AZ,but what's going on in LA. :huh::o:D

Nice to see that car again and a post from you Steve. Now if Leon posts here I'm buying a lottery ticket!!!

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OH YES, VERY nice!!!! What a difference a little off the top makes!!! You did that BEAUTIFULLY!!!B):P:D

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I just got an AMT 49 Ford and after poking around extensively on the HAMB forum, I've decided to try my very first chop top. But I would like some experienced direction. Has anyone done a tutorial on chopping this kit?

Rob..Mark hit it well....that is a toughie for your first chop. I would go resin for the time.

I did my first chop on a 34 PU...easiest top to chop, then I did a 56 f100, little tougher but straightforward. From there I have chopped a bunch more and even

sectioned a couple more after that.

Steve makes it tempting , but sure is a lot of stuff on your first chop.....just sayin...:PB)

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Rob - I would just go for it. Your'e not going to learn anything about chopping the top buying a resin body. Plus, you can post the process for those of us that haven't chopped anything and learn the goods and, hopefully not too many, bads. Tim Boyd had an article chopping the top of the 65 buick - yes, different body, but more complicated than the 32 ford. I can't remember which magazine had the aricle but it was fairly recent.

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There is more than one way to chop a top, so unless you want the exact look the Jimmy Flintstone body gives you, I suggest you chop the top yourself.

There are many factors to consider when chopping a top, many of which only become apparent after the top is chopped. :o Unless it's a Model T body, just about any vehicle is going to require extensive modification to the roof and body after a top chop, and making all the body modifications look like a well-planned, thoroughly though out idea is what separates the good from the bad...and the ugly. :lol:

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That's a nice looking chop on that '40."ya done good. :lol: On the '49 Ford there was an tutorial in Car Modeler about a "gentle mans chop" which alleviated some of the major drama regarding chopping a sloping roof car.

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Here's my opinion.

Work up to chopping a '49 Ford as it's one of the hardest to do......correctly. Steve got it right! That takes a lot of strategizing and experience to pull off.

Start with an early car (Model A, '34 Ford pickup, '32 Ford Sedan). Something with almost, if not absolutely upright pillars. Then work your way to a mid-fifties pickup ('50 Ford, '56 Ford, '55 Chevy) and then go to a car with skinny sloped A and C pillars ('55-'57 Chevy or Ford, '58 Plymouth Belvedere) and then lastly....I would do a 2-door coupe with the slanted pillars and the wide C pillar. I just feel like otherwise, it would be too easy to lose interest and ambition and it will end up in the parts pile. If you've never chopped a top, take baby steps.

If you're hellbent on this being your first chop, it might not hurt to go ahead and buy the Jimmy Flinstone car just to have beside you for reference. Just a thought. :o

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Thanks for the good advice guys. I can certainly understand the walk then run thought process. But...........I don't believe I'm an inexperienced modeler or lack talent and I figure if I had a good tutorial, there's no reason I couldn't pull it off. I will say this though........I'm sure as heck not going to pay for it. I've never done a chop before because 95% of the time, I don't find it an improvement. The 49 though, as Steve so aptly pointed out, looks just stunning with a good chop.

I'm sure I'll figure this out before it's time to get out the zona saw. BTW, Plowboy I REALLY like that 40. You did an excellent job on it. It has a great nostalgic feel and look. The only thing it needs is a nice set of headers in my opinion.

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Rob, you have the experience to do this well. That said if the frustration level gets high...you may give up. Chopping tops is not that hard...you have to think ahead. I would still practice on another body.....but go for it and show us as you are cutting!!

GOOD LUCK AND GOOD CHOPPIN!!

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Just do it ! And you don't have to lengtheh the top if you change the angle of the window glass,but you still will probably have to split it lengthwise and widen it. Grab an old junk body,set it on your bench and stare at it,and think about it,plan it out,then do it! Measure all your cuts carefully and be sure they're the same side to side. Just do it!

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I just started to chop the amt 49 ford, I'm about half way thru it and its not as difficult as I thought it would be I just planned it out and went for it I'm almost done with the filler and it is turning out good, just go for it.

Sorry I didnt take pics of how I did it.

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I just started to chop the amt 49 ford, I'm about half way thru it and its not as difficult as I thought it would be I just planned it out and went for it I'm almost done with the filler and it is turning out good, just go for it.

Sorry I didnt take pics of how I did it.

Well let's see where you're at now.

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Rob,the only advise I can give you on chopping a top is don't try to take shortcuts. If you chop a roof,you are going to have to lengthen it to make things line back up properly. So many chops don't look right because the builder doesn't lengthen the roof.

I just chopped a top on a '40 Ford which is somewhat similar to a '49 in that there is a sloped a and c pillar with a vertical b pillar. I didn't take any photos of the process,but I can explain it pretty simple.

First I stacked two cut off wheels together on my dremel(uniform cuts)then determined where to make my cuts on each pillar. Since the a and c pillars were sloped,I made my cuts at an angle on each of them. The b pillar,I simply cut straight across.

After the top was cut loose and cleaned up, I made two cuts across the roof. One between the a and b pillar and one between the b and c pillar. Then I took my c pillar section and checked the fit,filed/sanded where needed,then glued it back to the body. Then did the same process with the b and a pillar sections in that order.

With that completed, I had two gaps that were .070 each. I cut four pieces of styrene (two .040 and two .030 to get my .070) that were long enough to go across the roof and a half an inch wide. The reason for them being a half an inch wide is so that when I glue them into the gaps,they will fill everything including the tops of the doors. Then I laminated the .040 and .030 together.

With my .070 styrene ready, I simply placed them in the gaps and glued them with Tenax7. Then it's filing and sanding time. On my '40, I used very little putty and no CA glue. What little putty I did use could probably have been taken care of with a couple coats of primer. Hope this makes sense to you because I'm not the best at explaining things. Maybe next time,I'll take photos.

Here's a photo of my '40. I think I got the chop right on it,but you be the judge. I need to take photos in the sunlight instead of the rain next time also.

024-1.jpg

I think you got it right, and then some.:)

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I love the chop and that green you laid down on the model. Looks great. I was going thru some stuff and found an old '49 that I started at least 15 years ago. anyway thought I'd share the chop that I did. I chopped the top 3/16" of an inch and took out 1/2" from the lenght of the body. I saw a '49 like this in an old Hot rod magazine and was trying to make something like it at the time. anyway here are a few pics:

PlasticModels422.jpg

PlasticModels423.jpg

PlasticModels427.jpg

PlasticModels428.jpg

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