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Mr Modifier

Building The '71 Plymouth Roadrunner

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I joined today so here's a quick walk through a build I finished a few days ago. There's 3 weeks of posts compressed here - just so you know I don't normally work this fast!!!


Some of you will know Choc-Ice on this forum. He's a good friend of mine and he recently finished his mould for the '71 Plymouth Roadrunner (Daisy Duke's car).


He has only cast three of these so far - one he put on his amazing chase-cars chassis, one another person is currently building and the third I managed to get my mitts on to build up for my club's V8 class for American and Aussie muscle cars.


The body kit comes with body posts, resin cast driver's head and vac formed interior and glass.


Here's the body shell:



The casting is very good with only a couple of air bubbles. The shell needed very little trimming with just the glass areas and wheel wells to be dremelled out. The shell is quite lightweight - weighing in at around 40g - good for such a huge car (it's longer and wider than my SCX Barracuda). Dimensions are roughly 160mm long and 65mm wide.


I didn't fill the minor imperfections - you will see there was no point as the build progresses.


I needed to pay a lot of attention to the wheel arches as I wanted as wide a track as possible for race stability and also as low a centre of gravity as possible. I had to test-fit the chassis a few times - marking the high spots with a pencil before dremelling out some more.



Once the wheel arches were giving sufficient clearance I screwed the body posts to the chassis, offered it up to the body - made some adjustments and put a block in the trunk for the rear body post to sit on - I used copious amounts of Evo-Stik Epoxy Control (2 hours to reposition) - got the chassis sitting just right then held it all in place with blu-tack whilst the epoxy was setting.


I then unscrewed the chassis from the mounting posts and voila - finished body ready for painting:



I need the chassis to be up there with the Scaleys and Pioneers so I used a Slot.It HRS (not the more recent HRS2) chassis with donor wheels gears and motor from a Scalextric Ferrari F430. The class requires nothing more powerful than the standard Scaley 18k mabuchi so that's what the Plymouth is getting.


The guide will be SureChange - the Classic version (it's another project that Choc-Ice and I have collaborated on). This fits perfectly to the HRS chassis with no modifications and a perfect ride height for the Ferrari fronts. I will be using Satin Black urethanes on the rears eventually but the standard rubber is there for now:



So here's the final look with the chassis screwed to the body:



Not quite lowrider but as low as the wheels allow without me dremelling through the top of the front wings!


This is the best angle and one I hope the competition in next year's class will be seeing a lot of biggrin.gif



So on to priming.



A rather fetching rust coloured primer.


And then I went shopping in search of some Rock Salt.....

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Whilst I was waiting for fine weather to reappear so I could spray the main colour it would appear the car was hit by a very severe Winter storm! This left either ice crystals or heavy deposits of sea salt on the car - despite it being the height of Summer, we are about 15 miles from the sea and I didn't leave the car out overnight!


Or maybe I was visited by aliens.


Very strange.


Here are some photos of the damage.







But, as I had got new spectacles the day before I decided I was seeing things - no way that aliens would use my Roadrunner to farm their energy crystals.


So I went ahead and sprayed the top coat...



Not the smooth finish I was hoping for.


Perhaps I wasn't seeing things after all!



So I am thinking - seeing as they make Doctor Who an hour down the road in Cardiff - perhaps the special effects guys had been looking for a ride for the new Doctor - something suitably alien but on a budget.



Now what to do?!?

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So I waited 24 hours for the paint to cure and with equal measure of fingernails and stiff toothbrush I removed the salty carbuncles from the body. Lukewarm water dissolved the residue and I was left with....





So far so good. Would have been embarrassing if it didn't work out especially as this is the first time I have tried this technique.


The paint looks too shiny and the paint blisters just a little too raised at the edges to look realistic so I got out my pot of Astonish Oven Cleaner (a mildly abrasive paste) and applied it with a wet toothbrush.


Takes the shine off the paint as well as improves the look of the rusting.





So pretty happy with how it is looking but my wreck is a little too clean for my liking.

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Getting down and dirty (!)


I did some research on YouTube (the same place I found the salt weathering trick) and found out about washes.


So I applied a light wash of black acrylic thinned with water and a tiny, tiny bit of washing up liquid to break the surface tension and stop the water beading.


Next I applied a medium wash of burnt sienna (mid to dark brown).


Then I applied a medium wash of black as it still wasn't dirty enough.


And finally a dark wash of black around the rear lamp clusters and on the nose.


Here's the end result.







Just some matt sealer to cover it all and then it's on to the interior and final assembly.

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I decided not to go with the vacformed glass and use my own clear sheet instead as it seemed to look a little better.


Sheet cut to size and glued in to the frames...



I was pleased with the windscreen...



The wiper effect was done by drawing some circles on electrical insulation tape, cutting it to shape and sticking it to the screen. Then I sanded around the edges with dusty old wet and dry paper.


Peel off the tape and voila!..


I just need to find some wipers to fit now ohmy.gif


Now for the interior.


As this is now a lowrider the sidewinder motor sits quite high - enough to foul on the rear part of the interior.


So I decided to put a rear deck of black styrene sheet in place of the rear seats.



From outside it is still well below the window line.



Here's the original vacforme interior and resin head supplied with the kit.



And now with the rear seats removed and painted...



Glued in place and job done.


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So I still have work to do on the chassis which will be fitted with a GregK upgraded chip and a SureChange Classic guide but I couldn't resist fitting the chassis to see what she looks like.


So here it is, not far from the finished article. Just needs electrics and windscreen wipers.







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So on to the chassis.


I have fitted the SureChange CLASSIC guide (note the LED holder in front of the guide blade and the horizontal eyelet holders).


Here it is sat in the HRS chassis guide holder - a perfect fit width-wise - it just needs trimming down a bit.



And here is the trimmed guide also fitted with copper braids - doubled back SCX style.



Next was deciding where to locate the GregK mega chip (a C7005 with the diode upgrade). Here seemed a sensible place. The LED wires don't reach the front but as I was planning to replace the rather stiff LED wires with silicon guide wires that wasn't a problem.



So I then had to:


1) strip the wires from the LED and solder on silicone wire then re-join to the LED wires from the chip.

2) fit the LED to the guide (it's an interference fit so no glue needed)

3) move the ferrite man on the guide nearer the chip so I had wires to feed unobstructed into the eyelets - this is done by cutting the guide wires about 3cm from the chip and simply reversing the ferrite man (removing the metal guide shoes first)

4) add a ferrite man across the motor (insulation tape underneath) and connect the motor wires from the chip


Ending up with this...



Test it - it worked fine.


Now fit the body.



And there she is - ready to race.


Just need to find some windscreen wipers now...

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Very nicely done there sir...


Love that guide, and I agree, the scx style of 'four' pickups seems to work for me too. I've converted all of my scaley quick change braide to that style of braid setup...

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