This has always been one of my favorite movie cars, I mean what more could you ask for in a hot rod, 55 Chevy.. gray primer.. tilt doghouse..and a big block Chevy. However I Can`t say say the same about the movie. :-)
I will be using this 55 chevy SnapTite kit from Revell. These are great kits for bashing because they are cheap, and easily found. Also I`m going to make use of the kit chassis for the build.
First thing is to do a bit of cutting and reworking. Since the kit is a coupe body and the car I`m building is a 210. I will need to add a door/window post on both sides. And remove the wing window because it wasn`t in the movie car.
Here the 2 posts have been roughed in using Plastistruct 1/8" sheet. I have also removed the chrome molding from the front of the doors, back. You can also see that I`ve traced out where the front will be cut.
Now I have got to get the body mounted to the chassis so I can get going on the tilt front end. You can see on the left, I`ve added the tubing to the chassis with screws. I then added epoxy to the post and secured them into the body. After they were set, I drilled the front 2 mounting holes and added 2 more screws. These just screw into the bottom of the interior tray which will in the end be secured to the body.
You can see here where the front 2 screws come threw the interior. A piece of 1/8" thick plastic was glued over the holes to give a bit more meat for the screws to hold onto .These are in the very front and will not be seen after the dashboard,seats and paint are in place.
On the left I have done a little shaping/sanding on the posts and added the body line into it. And in the other picture you can see the front has been removed from the body. I used a sharp X-acto knife and just kept scoring the lines until the front end was free.
After some cleanup on the front end and the body I`m now going to start fabricating the firewall. The firewall will serve as a centering point, and will hold the doghouse closed also. First the styrene sheet was cut in a 1/2" wide, and a bit longer than needed strip, then using 4 alligator clips to hold it in place I glued it.
After the glue on the strip was set, I turned the body up on the front end on top of another piece of sheet styrene and traced around the outside. This after cut out gave me the front of the firewall, and was then glued in place and sanded.
Makes for a nice snug fit for the doghouse.
Next up is getting my wheels & tires ready so I can get the axle tubes in place. The wheel I found that has the closest resemblance to what was on the car are replacements for the NINCO Porsche # 80714 Fuchs black. The fronts needed a little lathe work to make them fit the Carerra tires I want to use. Rear tires are MRRC Cobra rears, and they were a perfect fit with the rear wheels. The centers will be painted light gray later in the build.
On to the front axle now, for this I used a standard Artin axle and a piece of brass tubing cut to size. The chassis was relieved of the 2 wheel studs that were molded in. Then the chassis was drilled for the brass tubing. On to the rear axle now, I decided to go with a sidewinder setup here so I can keep the detail of the model kit chassis. Pretty much the same procedure as the front. I used a Scalectric GT40 rear axle for this as it has the knurled ends that worked well in the Ninco wheels. The chassis was also relieved of the molded axle studs and a portion of the right frame rail had to be clearanced for the spur gear.
Here are both front and rear axles, wheels/tires after everything has been glued in place.Also you can see that I have removed the side pipes along with some of the plastic around the front chassis so that it resembles what the inside of a tilt front should look like. The rear fenders have also been enlarged to clear the tires.
Now that I got it on 4 rolling wheels, lets get onto the tilt front end. For this I`m using 1/16" I.D. brass tubing with 1/16" brass rod to make the hinge. As shown here the hinge has been formed and cut to size.
1/16" holes were drilled into the front of the chassis,and the hinge has been inserted.
Here the front has been placed back on the chassis and has been glued to the doghouse. The rods will not be glued, rather pulled apart a little so it has a snug fit. This way it can be removed if ever nessisary.This also shows you how the front will work.
Getting started now on the model motor, the motor block "BB CHEVY" itself is a personal project of mine that was created from 5 pieces of styrene, carved, & sanded. Then a mold was made so I can now cast them in resin. I needed to fabricate a 2 fours tunnel ram. For this I`ve used some 1/16" plastic rod, and some 0.20 flat styrene. A bit more filling and shaping and it will be close enough. It looks a little tall now, but I need the carbs to come through the hood. So after I get the hood scoop made, I`ll get a better perspective.
Here`s a cool link to some movie pictures, and to one of the 3 cars used in the movie that has been restored.