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  1. Yea, I've dug into my unfinished build pile and am finishing up some of those 80-90% finished models! There are ones I stopped working on out of frustration, and ones I have no idea why I shelved them. But I finished up the Valiant Stocker, the TROG Model A Phaeton and now this Dodge D-50 pickup. Back in the day I worked in a convenience store at the New Jersey shore near Earle Naval Depot. We had a lot of navy traffic in the store and these little pickups were always scooting around town. I was told they were used because they were taken on the ships and saved space. So I decided to build one for my 24 Hour Build project in 2017. I had some setbacks during the build, some of which had to do with fit of this kit. It is a nice little replica and the chassis detail is super nice. In fact I noticed it slid right up into my '40 Ford sedan delivery.. can a Turbo street rod be far off? What stopped me cold during the 24 Hour Build was the final fitment of the kit. After 20 hours of straight building, I just couldn't see where the issue was, so I called it quits. Coming back two years later with a clear head, I saw that the dashboard was too wide. I did some serious sanding on the ends and got the interior bucket to sit up in the body. That affects how the entire cab sits on the chassis. The rear pan on the pickup box was too narrow so I added some plastic to either end. I also did a lot of my drill and pinning to get the little pieces like hoses to fit and stay in place. The mirrors are also pinned in place. The model came with low wide tires and mag wheels. I needed it to be stock for the US Navy version. This little Mitsu pickup came with six lugs, so I stole the wheels and tires from a '57 Chevy Black Widow kit. I made my own decals. The paint color that worked best is actually Duplicolor sandable gray primer, with clear coat over it. Then I gave it a semi gloss overall finish. The mirrors appear too large to my eye, but they came with the kit. And I have to do something about those flat headlights! Part of the 24 Hour Build is to build something simple, not to add too much detail and try not to modify it a lot. It's also good to build a model that is expendable, so you aren't overly concerned about thrashing through a good kit. This D-50 fit the bill. It was for sale at my club meeting for the huge sum of $5, and I knew I had two more copies at home. The kit came with clear red tail lights, but the actual truck had the red - orange - white lenses. I covered the red clear units with Bare Metal Foil, then used paints for the colors. Stock Mitsubishi 4 banger under the hood. I didn't even wire it. There are a bunch of small delicate parts under the hood, so I did some detail painting on them. Chassis is also fairly nice with a lot of detail and working steering. I think I'll take one of my spare kits and see how this fares under a street rod! And my "I can't help myself!" detail was creating a dash insert. The interior was kind of stark and I knew I didn't want to try to detail paint the gauges. I started with a photo from a dealer brochure, and in the above photo you can see where I have deleted the steering wheel. The wheel was completely across the speedometer, so I copied the tach over into that space. In scale, and in the interior, nobody will notice it has two tachs! It's just printed on paper and white glued in place. If anyone wants a copy of the dashboard, I can email you a copy of the Word file I printed from. One thing that did baffle me a bit was that I repainted the hood and it's a lighter tone than the rest of the body. Then I checked my primer against the pain on the bed underside and it matches... the culprit must've been the Testors clear coat. I believe it's yellowed casting a slightly darker gray. So I took the freshly painted hood and did the same clear coat on it. Hopefully it will age to match in time. Hope you like it!
  2. I hadn't posted my year yet because I am working on my 1960 Plymouth airport limo as this year's Amnesty Project. I am working diligently on it but it is nowhere near finished to make it for this year, so it will be my first finish of the new year. Again, I've gotten into this project beyond my original thoughts, but I wouldn't have it any other way! So here is how my year went: The year started out on an up note. I finished my 20 year project, the Volare Messenger Car as my 2014 Amnesty Project. I originally thought I'd slam it together just to get it on the shelf. Even thought about just gluing the hood shut. Once I got into the project, I decided to do it properly. I always thought models of this era were lacking since most folks just do the traditional wiring and the engine bay looks empty next to all the wiring and smog stuff that are in 1:1s. So I thought I'd try some extra detail and wired up all the smog stuff including the charcoal canister. It took me until late January to finish it but it was worth the extra time. It even won first place in Light Commercial at the recent Liars Challenge. I got caught up in the fever of the release of the Revell 1929 Ford Roadster and immediately dove into one. I painted it Tamiya Coral Blue because that was the theme of the Diversified Scalerz show. That gave me two weeks to build a model. I almost made it too! I had it up on wheels and fairly well done for the show. It took me another week to sort out the final details. Still, the fastest I've ever built a model outside of the 24 Hour Build! Pretty much built it out of the box, added different tail lights, photo etched gauges and seat belts. Otherwise, built as Revell intended it to be! And the last two off the bench this year were built as a pair, my Light Commercial Dodge Caravans. I think the two of them together make for a much better showing than just one of them alone! The Taxi was fun. I used the Checkers decals from the Monogram '37 Ford Pickup. It's a New Jersey taxi, with an ad for Atlantic City on the roof, and the phone number is my old one from when I lived in NJ. I added a rear wiper. I always thought someone should do the CV (Commercial Van) version so I did. Company is real, but I don't have vans! If you dial that phone number you will reach me. I do own the domain, but haven't used it yet! So that's a big FOUR models for me this year. This was a busy and eventful year for me, so I didn't get as much bench time as I would've liked, but there's always 2016! A Happy New Year to all and hope to see many of you at NNL East in April!
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