Resilient Resins Ferrari TR59 scratchbuild 'warts 'n' all!

Resilient Resins Ferrari TR59 scratchbuild 'warts 'n' all!

Postby wixwacing » Sun 31 Aug, 2008 6:59 pm

I started an article some little while back about the painstaking progress of building a ‘Resilient Resins’ Ferrari TR59 into a slot car. The article feature mainly the building of Ackermann steering for the model with the reasons for this also being included. Suffice it to say that one day it would be necessary to finish the more decorative side of the model aka the body!! As always I invariably have a string of models in progress, construction or repair, some being other peoples! So, time passes slowly (or quickly) when there’s modelling to be done! Without going into lengthy detail about the chassis construction you can check it out at


The ‘Wixwacing' patent scratchbuilt steering unit


AS for the rest of the model, it went some thing like this:


Firstly, the body had to be procured. I had visited the ‘Resilient resins’ several times and was interested in the subject matter they had to offer. Most of their bodies are available now as plastic RTR’s and others have been available from other makers for quite a while but they still have one or two unique models which will give the builder an opportunity to make some thing a bit more original


Resilient Resins


They take Paypal and as I transferred funds I looked forward to receiving the completed item. A week or so passed and the parcel arrived. As always I had just returned from work to find the box on the dining table and after making a cup of tea, retired to the lounge to unpack. On opening the box there was the receipt of purchase and what I could only describe as a disclaimer??!! Telling me in not so many words that there was the likelihood that the resin surface was a bit unstable!! And that a degree of preparation would be needed to rectify it?? Anyhow, unwrapping the model I could immediately see what they were alluding to. The surface of the resin had what I can only describe as a sort of ‘crazed’ appearance, Not fully sure why but they were right, it WAS going to need some kind of stabilising process as it was hard and brittle to the touch and I was concerned that it wouldn't take too much handling.


Image


Anyway, it was here now and determined to make the best of a not to pleasant task, I gave the shell a couple of thinned coats of clear lacquer followed by a thinned coat of flat grey. This was the only way I could think of holding it together!! Having done this I then needed to let it cure for a couple of days before I started handling it. But when the time came all seemed and remained fine. The body was lightly sanded and in the meantime I had been on the internet downloading as meany pictures as I could of the ’59 in order that I could do it justice. Having gone to the lengths of making it with steering it was almost essential that the rest of it lived up to my and other people’s expectations as far as detail would be concerned.


Image


So, armed with a folder of good pictures from all angles and all eras I set about preparing all the fiddley bits. Decisions made at this stage were many fold. It was to be complete with side pipes AND tail pipes as per original and not sawn off sideys. It would have the clear intake duct with a bunch of 12 intake trumpets. It would have a pair of (passive) drivers lamps to the front and decent tail lamps. It would have realistic headlamps, it would have a windscreen that best represented the model, and almost as hard as the side pipes, it would have the side ducts!



Bugger, as much as that! Well, anything less would be retrograde and as I have always maintained, there has to be something new or extra in each consecutive model to keep the spark alive, and this will have plenty of ‘something new’!


Image


So the first step was to cut the chassis from pcb and shape it to fit the underside of the body. Firstly, the body had ‘slab’ sides. Too flat by far and not tucked under as they should be, so the first task was to contour the body sides in to a pleasant curve like the real thing. In turn, because the process had thinned the bottom edge of the sides, they then had to be thickened to give them some sort of durability. this was done by mixing and painting on a layer of Extra Strength epoxy resin. Once done and set, the body side were trimmed to depth and profiling was finished. Then could the pcb be shaped. This was to enclose the entire underside of the body for no other reason than to make it look tidy. Once the chassis was the correct size I built it in accordance with the run down in the Ford Cortina article elsewhere in this section. The steering was constructed also in the article linked at the top, and the chassis was complete (almost) and ready to run.



Image



The chassis part was essential as until I had all the wheels fitted and working and level, I wouldn’t know what height to set the chassis in the body, giving it a good ‘stance’. So with chassis complete and body waiting for it, I constructed the mounting posts. These are also scratch built to give me what I wanted rather than some botched job which looked messy. After these were complete the rest of the work was down (up!) hill.


Body mounting posts



The coming together of chassis and body showed it to be a bit proud and so the mounting posts were trimmed until the body sat square all round. Once happy, the posts were glued in with Extra Strength epoxy. The body was left inverted for a couple of days with the chassis sitting in it. Once righted, the posts had a final trim to get the wheels in their right locations and the body looking level on the test block. So, that’s the hard bits sorted, or so I thought. The Herculean tasks were yet to come and they were a long time in the coming. But one final job was to cut and shape the hole for the carb ram pipes and the other was to cut out the drivers side. This was simple enough.


Image




Next up was to start adding detail. Some parts needed to be made well before they were fitted as it would entail handling the painted body and I wanted these items to go straight on no messing. First hitch was the vacuum formed clear pieces. The ones supplied seemed a bit inadequate. The bonnet scoop might have been good but it got lost and was never to surface again, the other problem was that the modeller who crafted the body did a good job mostly (except for the sides) but he didn’t make the cockpit wide enough. The side screens were well inside the bodyline and this hunched the driver into a small space which looked a bit naff . So, with trusty ‘dremel’ and an appropriate tool I extended the dashboard/windscreen joint sideways putting a few more millimetres on the cockpit.. The side flanges to which the real screen would be screwed had to be recreated. This was done using clear blister pack plastic and blue tack. Once held in place I recreated the lip with plastic putty. Once set I cleaned up with the dremel and prepared to cut a new screen.



The screen was to be cut from a blister pack too. In fact, from the pack that my Revell Mustang body came in. A flat piece was cut out and a strip of masking tape applied to one side. I then cut a strip about ten mil deep from some plain paper. This was shaped and trimmed to replicate the windscreen I was aiming for. Once happy with the paper one, I laid it on the masking tape and drew round it and trimmed it to size. Next job was the curved bits. If you bend this plastic free hand and cold, it clouds up, so a degree of heat was called for and the source was a domestic two speed hair dryer. This I set to heat one and wrapped the screen around a modelling knife handle to form it. It proved that the handle drew too much of the heat so I swapped to a wooden dowel and this was fine. I soon had the screen preformed and clear. The alloy stays in the original screen, are made from thin strips of ‘Baremetal Foil’. I did the same for the bonnet scoop.


Image


Another challenge was going to be the side vents. The model would look half baked without them so a long time was spent experimenting with different ideas. The final solution was actually quite simple (as are all the best solutions). Firstly, the vent hole was cut in the body, right so far. Then a two mil wide strip of brass was cut from a sheet of thin!! Using a paintbrush handle and a pair of heavy scissors, the strip was shaped and trimmed til it fitted the hole. Easy so far!


Image


The shape was then pressed into a flat wad of blue tack and the ends soldered together. The two centre bars were then made and still using blue tack, they were soldered in place. When they were removed, the external faces were cleaned up with a sharp modelling knife. To do the other side, the holes were cut and shaped to the already constructed vents, this ensured a snug fit. The vents were sprayed with ‘Bright Chrome’ paint from an auto store.


Image


Feeling a bit chuffed by the success I then tackled the headlights. This was easy though. A length of brass tube was selected and the headlights drilled out at a horizontal angle from the body. Two short pieces were cut and the fronts angled approximately in line with the body shape. Both tubes were then filled with clear epoxy and left to harden. Once hardened the lights were epoxied onto and just proud of the holes in the body. Once again., when set, the lights were sanded to profile. This was looking very effective with the tube representing the headlight rim, my only regret was that in retrospect, I should have used alloy tube, but it was proving too difficult to get the size locally.


Image


I had already decided to use some 3mm LEDs for the tail lights (non working). Maybe in the future I will do a model, complete with working lights!! Have I just put my foot in my mouth.....again!! Anyways, the body was drilled at the rear in preparation. The driver was chosen and mounted to a base with a steering wheel and bits. Once again I posed the driver and steering wheel, they look so much better. The chassis was tested in place and the brush hump on the motor was touching various things underneath. A flat ended tool in the dremel soon took out the surplus, the lead wires were soldered to the underside of the brush tags and the chassis fitted well. Front lamps were situated in what technically were intake vents, the originals being located behind the grille. But I have allowed myself the pleasure of wandering from the plot as I think they look effective. Once again, these lights this time are plastic tubes shaped to fit. Glued in place and painted silver(after the body was painted). I then carefully filled them with clear epoxy and left to dry.


Image


The grille was fairly easy and is made from a piece of cotton sheet. In future I might try nylon as it doesn’t ‘nap’ so easily. This was stretched over the bottom of a spray can and held taught by a rubber band. It had a coat of clear and was left to dry. It then had a coat of silver and was left to dry. This stiffened the cloth nicely and made it easy to handle and cut out. This was also epoxied in place. I was contemplating how to reproduce the ram pipes on the carbs and was resigned to making them from brass when quite by accident, I found an old Scalextric Ferrari 312 F1 body in the scrap bin, and there, sticking out both sides were a nice set of ram tubes in chrome!! I cut the tubes to size and glued them to a piece of flat plastic and glued the whole under the air scoop! Brilliant! About another five hours sliced of the time!!


Image


The biggest headache was to be the exhaust system. The real car had very little ground clearance and I presume the exhausts sat outside the car to allow it to be so low. Pity really, because if they had been underneath......I wouldn’t have needed to make them!! But they are there as large as life. To make matters worse, the original exhausts vented out of four pipes at the back of the car!! Some of the modern restored cars have the pipes finishing in a sort of ‘Daytona’ side pipe. ie. A short tail pipe after the muffler and a right angled outlet to atmosphere. This is incorrect for the factory models and having transgressed the factory code with the driving lights, I dare not bring the wrath of Enzo upon me from afar. So, the pipes come OUT of the body behind the side vent and go BACK under the body and journey rearwards. In my instance, the pipes start and finish on the side but I have fitted two pairs of twin pipes to the rear.


Image


The body was painted in red as usual. It had a coat of flat followed by a couple of thinned coats of gloss. Each coat was rubbed down with a piece of cotton cloth. This was enough to smooth the surface for the next coat. A coat of thinned clear was sprayed on and when dry, the decals were applied and the filler cap had a piece of Baremetal foil applied for effect. Several days later the model had another two coats of clear just to give it some durability. The exhausts were painted with satin enamel. I have seen this model with Daytona side pipes and finished in a rust effect. Too effective for my liking. It made the exhausts look very thick and oversize, as well as a bit tacky.


Image


So what did we end up with, apart from many hours in the garage working under an anglepoise lamp?? Well, I don’t know about you guys but after about six months of on and off modelling I quite like the little beauty. I have already raced it and although not totally race prepared at the time it acquitted itself well. At eighty four grams of low down weight it is more than happy in our Classic Sports class and it ran with the pack on its first outing. I tried not to make it too delicate. A lot of parts, including the screen, are fixed in with epoxy resin for that reason but we don’t race it on plastic track so it’s not going to get side swipe by some magnet demon at a phenomenal rate of knots.


Image


I have tried to adhere to scale. The body had sides that were flat and far too deep. These I shortened and curved more to look like the real thing. The second worst problem besides the flaky gel coat was the misalignment of things. The body was not symmetrical. It had a bad wind in it which I had to run under a hot tap for several painstaking minutes. The rear wheel arches were spaced differently on either side and are too large. It took a lot of time to get the rears especially, in the right place by careful trimming of one side and building up of the other. But the worst crimes hopefully were avoided, that is the crime of accentuated scale. Drivers either too big or too small or just totally inappropriate. All too often you see models with exhausts way too large for real life. Windscreens that are cumbersome and sit way to high by comparison and the poor choice of wheels and tyres. Dreadful alloy wheels with holes bored in them or mock spokes. I know, I have been guilty of all these things myself, but hopefully no more.


Image


Again, in retrospect, what would I have changed? Firstly I would have sourced some alloy tube for the headlights. Secondly, I wished I had made it a front motor model now I have a supply of Fly transmission springs. I could also have given it a fuller cockpit, but there’s always the next time. There are a couple of potential scratch builders in my race group and I will encourage them in their efforts and will help them if needs be purely because of the delight it can generate and the extra dimension it adds to the hobby. I consider this model my best to date purely because of content and what I have learnt with this will carry over to the next and the next. And in knowing this, I am looking forward to my next scratchbuild, whatever it might be!!




Image
Image

When I'm not racing slotcars,
I'm out in the back yard, burning food!!

When I win, it's because of my talent, not my car or my controller!
User avatar
wixwacing
Marshal!!!
 
Posts: 1906
Joined: Thu 10 Jul, 2008 8:22 pm

Return to The Scratchbuilders Lair

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

Untitled Document
Image hosted by Photobucket.com
Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Image hosted by Photobucket.com
Image hosted by Photobucket.com

Image hosted by Photobucket.com
Image hosted by Photobucket.com

















































































































































Image hosted by Photobucket.com

cron