1913 Mercer Raceabout

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This kit has been sold under various brands; this happens to be the Entex version. It's 1/16 scale, fairly detailed in some ways yet simplified in other ways. My kit had a severe warp on one of the frame rails, which made assembling the model a real pain. The twist is still there, but with everything finished and the fenders installed, it's not obvious unless you look at the model directly from the front or back.

The body and frame were molded in a very bright yellow, but I wanted something more subdued, so I used Rustoleum "Warm Yellow," which is actually sort of a pale pastel yellow:

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I replaced the kit's plastic floor boards and dashboard with real wood, stained and varnished. Gauges were paint detailed (since the kit doesn't supply any gauge face decals) and I used clear 5-minute epoxy for the gauge "glass." I didn't like the look of the kit's "brass" parts... it's that mirror-finish brass that looks like brass colored chrome. I wanted the look of natural unpolished brass, so I sprayed every brass part with Testors Transparent Black Window Tint to tone down the brass and give the parts some depth, then sprayed them each with Dullcote, which gave me that unpolished brass look that I wanted. The spotlight is a combination of brass and copper parts, so I brush painted the "copper" parts first, then did the window tint/dull coat routine. I also toned down the look of the car by going with black enamel on the side lights, headlights and tail light (instead of brass):

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Detail painting the wheels was a real pain. They're molded all in one piece, but I wanted the rims to be black and the rim clips to be "metal," so I had to paint all of the rims black (both sides of each wheel) and then paint all the rim clips a steel color. These cars came with various different color/pinstipe schemes... on yellow cars a common look was thin black and red pinstripes. At first I figured I'd draw the pinstripes on with fine-tip Sharpies, but after I thought about it a while, I realized that would be impossible. There was no way I could possibly draw the stripes on straight, and if I messed up at all, the Sharpie ink isn't easy to wash off, so I'd have to strip the body part and start all over. So....... I went with an "easy way out." Instead of trying to recreate the very thin dual black and red stripe look, I went with single, wide black stripes. I created all the stripes by masking the body panels with Scotch tape, and cutting the stripe shapes freehand with an X-acto. It wasn't easy to get the stripes perfect cutting the mask by hand, but I think I did pretty well:

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The engine was detailed with paint, but is otherwise pretty much out of the box (except for scratchbuilt spark plugs to replace the "stubs" on the kit parts. The seats were painted with acrylic craft paint in a custom mixed red color, then sprayed with that same black transparent window tint to tone down the color and give the seats some depth.... then a black wash to emphasize the seams. I also added the brass "snaps" on the sides of the seats by driling out the seat sides and inserting tiny brass nails (actually nails for planking a hull left over from a wooden ship kit). I also used these brass nails throughout the model to simulate bold heads where they were missing from the kit parts, like the steering column escutcheon plate on the dashboard, the mounting brackets for the side lamps, etc.:

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Posted · Report post

Super!!!

What a work of art.

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Posted · Report post

Nice. All that toning down really paid off. The stripes do look okay, but too bad about the thickness.

Who does a 1/12 kit? I know of the 1/16 varieties but don't believe I've ever noticed a 1/12. One of these days, I'd like to build a copy of the old #22 racer.

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Nice. All that toning down really paid off. The stripes do look okay, but too bad about the thickness.

Who does a 1/12 kit? I know of the 1/16 varieties but don't believe I've ever noticed a 1/12. One of these days, I'd like to build a copy of the old #22 racer.

Oops, sorry. It's 1/16 scale. I'll fix my text.

For some reason the fender stripes look a little shaky in these photos, but in real life they're almost perfect.

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Posted · Report post

Nice work Harry.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Nice job Harry, how did this one take to build ?

Edited by martinfan5

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Posted · Report post

Nice job Harry, how did this one take to build ?

How long did it take, is that what you're asking? I wasn't keeping track, but my best guess would be 40 hours or so. Having a dehydrator (finally!!!) really sped things up. Buying a dehydrator is probably the single best hobby-related purchase I've made in a long time. I strongly recommend getting one to anyone who doesn't have one. It really speeds up the building process.

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Well, that was fast. Less than a month after you got it on eBay. And spectacular in every detail.

I have a desire to build the Tom Mix Cord Phaeton, and that color looks perfect -- Art Anderson says the Tom Mix car is "cigarette yellow."

Edited by sjordan2

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How long did it take, is that what you're asking? I wasn't keeping track, but my best guess would be 40 hours or so. Having a dehydrator (finally!!!) really sped things up. Buying a dehydrator is probably the single best hobby-related purchase I've made in a long time. I strongly recommend getting one to anyone who doesn't have one. It really speeds up the building process.

Yes that is what I was asking, thats not to bad time wise

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Well, that was fast. Less than a month after you got it on eBay. And spectacular in every detail.

I have a desire to build the Tom Mix Cord Phaeton, and that color looks perfect -- Art Anderson says the Tom Mix car is "cigarette yellow."

I have no idea what color "cigarette yellow" is, but this Rustoleum paint is a very nice, soft, understated yellow. I'd describe it as "butter yellow."

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Yes that is what I was asking, thats not to bad time wise

Forty hours is pretty much a wild guess. I never keep track of the time spent on a model. I worked on this one a couple hours one day, a coupe hours the next day... really hard to say how much time I actually have in it. Forty hours might be too low an estimate.

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Entex never dreamed this kit could look this good. As usual, a tour-de-force Harry.

It's a great tutorial on producing pleasing and accurate finishes of various materials.

Short of brass fabrication this is an excellent simulation.

When do you sleep??? :unsure:

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Entex never dreamed this kit could look this good. As usual, a tour-de-force Harry.

It's a great tutorial on producing pleasing and accurate finishes of various materials.

Short of brass fabrication this is an excellent simulation.

When do you sleep??? :unsure:

Pretty much every night, all night... :D

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Posted · Report post

Beautiful build, Harry. I can see why you are attracted to this scale.

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Very nice, Harry!

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You would have fooled me if you would have posted a photo of the model outside

Looks great.

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What a a beautiful build Harry.!.....Looks like you also have a passion for the older classics in model form.

Entex was mentioned as the manufacturer. I remember Bandai issued this kit in 1/16th scale way back in the 70's.

Did Entex re pop this one or is it a different kit?

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I just wanted to add (a) this is a tutorial for me regarding your approach to metal finishes, and (b it reinforces my opinion that artist's acrylics are the best choice for leather and vinyl seats - realistic, forgiving and easy to shade and work with overall.

Edited by sjordan2

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Posted · Report post

What a a beautiful build Harry.!.....Looks like you also have a passion for the older classics in model form.

Entex was mentioned as the manufacturer. I remember Bandai issued this kit in 1/16th scale way back in the 70's.

Did Entex re pop this one or is it a different kit?

As far as I know all the various repackagings are the same kit, the only difference maybe being the inclusion of an electric motor. The version I built included parts for a battery box and various gears that would turn from the engine through the driveshaft and then through the differential to power the rear wheels... but no actual electric motor was in the kit. And nothing about motorizing the model is mentioned in the instructions, so my guess is that all the motorizing bits are left over from a previous incarnation of the kit, maybe the Bandai version?

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The kit was originally made by Bandai, known for offering motorized kits (eventually marketed by them under the Classic Car Collection series), and later issued in different Fuman Bandai and Entex packaging. As mentioned, the Fuman Bandai instructions are in Chinese, but it's just as crisp as the other versions and is usually available at a much lower price on eBay than the Entex version.

Edited by sjordan2

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Posted · Report post

I double checked to make sure I wasn't reading a new "Real or Model?" posting ;) She looks great Harry.

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just stunning , the detail is :wub:

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just stunning , the detail is :wub:

That's what Yoda would say...and so do I.

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Beautiful build Harry, I'd love one of these in 1/25th scale to go with my Stutz Bearcat ....

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Beautiful build Harry, I'd love one of these in 1/25th scale to go with my Stutz Bearcat ....

I had a hard enough time working in 1/16 scale... I can't imagine doing a car like this in 1/25 scale. I'd have to work under a microscope to see what I was doing! :lol:

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