What are your opinions on the Italeri Peterbilt 378 "Long Hauler" kit?

18 posts in this topic

Posted · Report post

I just ordered the Peterbilt 378 from Italeri, For those of you who have built it what should I look for? Any negative things with the kit? Any positive things with the kit? Also tips for a beginner would be greatly appreciated. My goal with this build is to make a "heavy hauler" or a truck that you might see on the ice roads of Alaska. What specific things can I do to make that goal possible? Once I receive the kit I will post a new thread and take you all through the build. Thanks very much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

The biggest complaint is that the truck on the box is not what is in the box. The box shows a 379 long hood but you get the 378 regular short hood. That being said, it is a nice kit and would accurately replicate an owner/operator rig like the ones on IRT. The 378 can be used for moderatly heavy haul without too many mods to the kit, I see many in my area being used to move offroad equipment or oversize loads. The part that seems to intimidate most builders is the multi piece cab, mine went together well and was really a non issue. One tip is to use the cab floor as a guide to keep the sides straight. It really does fit together pretty well without too much drama.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

I have heard the complaint about the picture on the box not being accurate, I am not all that concerned with that. On this build I would like to add a pusher axle, a 20,000# front axle, headache rack (due to the fact that I'm going to be placing a flatbed behind it) and a light bar, with possibly a few extra work/spot lights around the cab, but I am unsure where I can find those things, and I am not quite skilled enough to make my own. Would you have any ideas on where I could begin to look for them? Thanks!

Kyle

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Any Peterbilt of Italeri is a modeler friendly kit. I did not find any fit issue or incorrect shape of any part. There is a lot less work with cleaning the parts compared to RoG Peterbilts. The dashboard molding is not quite correct but the reissued version has a decal with the instruments correctly located. The seats in the cab should be a bit higher. The hubs on drives are just generic, far from being realistic. Other than that, it is a great kit.

The other parts that you want to add like the pusher axle, headache rack and that, try to look for them at aftermarket casters. E-shops like KFS, A.I.T.M....

If you look around the forum, you will find some tips and links.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Knowing this kit intimately...

The photo (from a Cat add for Peterbilt dealers) on the box was provided as a reference for the decal stripe and was originally planned to be retouched into a 378 - but that never happened. The box also ended up with the wrong parts layout photo for the sleeper requiring them to print the correct layout photo as a sticker and apply it to each kit box after printing. Oops.

Enough of the box...

Assembly is straight forward. Assemble the frame/suspension as a unit and paint it (just like the factory does). Assemble the cab as firewall-sides,back with the floor taped in place, or the roof taped in place. If you are going to paint the roof a separate color, it is easier to leave the roof off and glue it in place later rather than mask it off. Same for the sleeper. When setting the cab and sleeper on the chassis, I like to temporarily install the hood first - then line up the cab/sleeper (already mated together) and making adjustments to the cab/sleeper mounting rather than fighting with the hood fit when the cab is cemented in place.

The cooling overflow reservior on top of the radiator can foul out with the underside of the grille and hood, so careful positioning is needed here. The molded on rubber flap that surrounds the front of the radiatior also sometimes fouls out with the grille and may need to be trimmed if needed.

378jgftiltrh22810-vi.jpg

I like to install the glass by temporarily holding the glass in place with low-tack tape, applying the Testor's clear windshield glue, letting it set-up, then removing the

tape and letting it cure. No smudges, no fingerprints, no mess.

burg379windowglue080110-vi.jpg

9detroitdieselandbrowninterior-vi.jpg

Interior colors can be gray, red, medium blue and tan.

Kitdoorpanelisthis.jpg

377dashbrochure2.jpg

I have boatloads of detail photos if you need.

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

On the front axle - the springs are already quite beefy - for some reason Italeri molded the rare "progressive" multi-layer leaf spring, instead of the typical Peterbilt long taper leaf spring.

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Wow! Thank you very much, that was a great help, I look forward to this build, thank you for all the tips!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Tim, do you have any reference photos as to the air line routing?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

I used to have one that Ken Smith sent me years ago - but it is very outdated. I'll find it, scan it and post it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Thank you! I appreciate it very much!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

it is a very nice kit assembly is straight forward i drive a pete 378 sbfa hd if u need any detail pic lemme know truck parked in drive way

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Any available reference photos would be more than welcome, thank you!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Listen to Tim.... He's the Man for any Pete issue or question....Nothing really to add, exept that it is a well appointed kit....I'm just glad I got one before the price went up...Just have fun with it and take your time....Coming from me, that doesn't hold much water, but I know if I get into a pinch, sometimes it's best to walk away for a couple of hours or days and come back to it....I usually end up with a solution that I wouldn't have thought of had I stayed on the project... :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

The series 60 Detroit Diesel in this kit is nice it also dates the version of 378 as Detroit became a Freightliner only thing around 01 or 02. As everyone says Tim is the man when it comes to Peterbilt. Enjoy your build.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

To add to the Detroit Diesel and Freightliner/Daimler ownership - Peterbilt and KW dropped Detroit from their price book (option list) at the end of '02.

So, aside from the instrument panel, the Italeri 378 can be a '87 to '03 model year truck. (triva: 378 didn't debut until '87, several months after the 379, 377, 357 debuted.. there never was a 378 planned - the 379-119 was the highway and the fiberglass hood was the vocational 357. A dealer spec'd a 357 hood on a 379-119 chassis and the 378 was born).

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Here is a bad scan of a bad copy of the plumbing. It is quite out of date - accurate to the 80's and maybe early 90s.

airPB-vi.jpg

airlinrscheme-vi.jpg

Tim

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted · Report post

Thanks a lot Tim!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now