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1959 Plymouth Suburban Wagon

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Next car in line to build from my family's past is my grandfather's 1959 Plymouth Suburban.  Grandpa was the original exec director of the Madison (Wi) Scouts Drum and Bugle Corps and remained at that job til he died in 1968.  As part of the job he was furnished a business car periodically and used it as his own.  The problem for me was that there wasn't a 59 wagon available that I could find so I was going to have to try and create my own as best I could.   Full disclosure, I've been building this for a few months and currently am almost finished and will post a few pix then.   I was able to make a good trade with Stitchdup (thanks again Les) to score the 60 Plymouth Fury Cop wagon.  This was to donate the interior, side glass, chassis, and body shell.  The remainder, front clip, rear fenders, both bumpers, front glass,  and wheels come from a kit body 59 Fury HT.  Thankfully, both Johan kits measured up to each other relatively well.  It could've been much harder (for my skills anyway) than it has been.  I've taken pics as I built and will post some hopefully in some order.  This wagon might be ho-hum to many but I remember it fondly and kept me interested in finishing during some of the more frustrating stages.

First up was to cut free the front clip and rear fenders from the HT, using my tamiya scriber to get the lines started then finishing with tamiya saw blades.  Also began the process of removing all body trim.

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Great project!  I’m following!  Those old kits are a pain to cut up due to both the composition and thickness of the plastic. Good luck!👍 

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1 hour ago, Tom Geiger said:

Great project!  I’m following!  Those old kits are a pain to cut up due to both the composition and thickness of the plastic. Good luck!👍 

I needed luck with this one Tom 😉.. lots of frustration and comprimises.

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After removing the front clip I started on the rear fenders.  All Fury trim needed to be removed and the tail lights needed to be narrowed.  The taillight mods were one of the many disappointments I had doing the build.  Both placement and size.  Kept plugging away... 


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Posted (edited)
33 minutes ago, Mopar - D said:

Very interesting build Rich. Do you have any pictures of your grandfather’s old car? 

Unfortunately I only have this one, but I have good memories of the colors and Scout emblems (that I later make decals of).  I was 9 in this pic and he had the car til I was 16.


Edited by hedotwo
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1 hour ago, gotnitro? said:

Very nice work so far , looks like very challenging plastic to work with also

The HT plastic is harder than the wagon's, which was a later issue and softer.  Pro's and con's to both 😉

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Posted (edited)

I used the glass from the 60 made a rear from clear sheet later.




Lining up the front clip





Removing the 60 rear fenders






Needed to remove all trim including door handles from the 60







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Progress on the rear fenders.  Had to add some sheet stock to be able to reinforce where the fenders meet the body.

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Wow!! when you said what you were building I just assumed it was a trim change, not a complete rebuild. Nice work and I'm glad I could help cos I can learn something now

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This is the best kind of project, something meaningful and nostalgic to the builder.  You are doing a fantastic job on this conversion.  It's apparent that you are putting a lot of heart and soul into this build.

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Thanks for the comments about memories from doing "family" builds.  It sure helps when you hit roadblocks in the build.  Pics today are more from the blending of the rear fenders (I didn't include pics of the passenger side as they were pretty similar to what I had to do on the driver's side), adding the 59 roof perimeter trim (if I remember right it was 020 round stock) and removing most of the 60 trim from the tailgate.  I ended up leaving the Plymouth script where it was, even though the 59 was on the opposite side of the tailgate.  I drew the line many times during this build ;)




Added a section of sheet to build up a depression in the fender









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Me too, great work so far.

My father had an International Travelall around 1972 that was probably a 1965ish.

I was thinking to try to build it.

Your build is certainly inspirational.

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A few pics of the blending of the front clip.  Filled as much of the gaps with various sizes of stock and then used either superglue or putty.  The passenger side cut had a bit of an angle after I'd cut it that's why it looks kind of weird with that piece of sheet in it.  I needed to try and keep the clip level with the body. 







Here's one of my having to grind away part of the 60 rockers to look more towards a 59 plus it helped line up with the bottom of the fenders



The taillights were my nightmare.  Lots of restarts and re-do's with them.  Still not super happy, but......






Thanks for following along :)



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Great looking body work on this conversion. Very clean trim details. Always fun to build a model of a car or truck from the past that meant so much to you.  

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33 minutes ago, Maindrian Pace said:

Very nice work so far. It will be interesting to see your changes to the green house - roof pillars, vent posts, and window shapes.

I don't change them from the 60.  I had enough on my plate with what I had.  The 59 was definitely a bit different but this was close enough.  Another one of my lines in the sand 😉

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