1/18th Custom Diecasts

Vehicle models, character models, commercial kits, custom kits, and so on.

Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby ramfett » Sat Nov 19, 2011 3:31 pm

Sunstar makes a pretty decent '71 Mustang, I used one of their older 71 Boss 351s for my XA. On ebay, they're about the same price as a Welly. Ertl also made a 73 that would probably work, too, although those are a bit harder to come by and more expensive. I also feel the Sunstar 2nd Gen Mustangs have slightly better detail. With a little more modification, an Ertl '71 Torino would work too, those can be found pretty cheap.

I can't bring myself to buy high end diecast cars just to chop up and attempt MM builds with. I like standard Ertl (or models of similar detail like Maisto, Sunstar, Welly, Road Signature, etc) to use for projects, both for the price point and simplicity of construction. They're a lot easier to knock apart, mod and rebuild than Autoart/Biante, Hwy 61/DCP, Supercar Collectibles/Ertl Authentics/Auto World, Greenlight collectibles or GMP/Acme products.

Again, I'd be more than happy to provide whatever advice I can on modding diecast cars. That goes for anyone interested, too.
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby weelz » Sun Nov 20, 2011 12:45 am

yeah, i had noticed the sunstar ones too, im watching a couple on ebay now haha. i have a couple of mates on another forum that like to chop up autoart stuff and im just like :o "what are you doing!!!" haha, they arent for mad max builds, they are more jap or german stuff, they still turn out well tho but i still couldnt bring myself to do it haha.

cheers again mate, ill give you a holla if i decide to get one and get stuck ;)
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby ramfett » Wed Nov 30, 2011 12:50 am

Okay, it's time for an update!

Here's the progress and pictures I promised of the various cars I've been working on.

First up, the Road Warrior damaged Interceptor. I popped the front nose off and used a modelling saw to chop out the corner and glued that back on to the fender. The bumper, having been molded as a solid piece, needed to have some of the holes trimmed out. I used a combination of drill, saw, x-acto knives and files to carefully trim those out. Once it was all trimmed, I used a lighter to gently heat the plastic on the right side and bend the front bar in slightly, as per the movie.
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I still have to drill a hole in the left fender to insert a peg that'll be attached to the nose to better hold it on for "nose-on" displaying.
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Next is the Ertl 55 Chevy Belair. I modified a set of wheels that I pulled off a monster truck school bus toy and attached those to the stock wheel hubs. I used a sanding drum on a drill press to carve out the rear wheel wells and added in some styrene tube to raise the rear suspension a bit.
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I pulled out the motor and detailed it with plug wires and some hoses. I put a bigger air cleaner on it and flipped the exhaust manifolds to add vertical exhaust stacks that are routed through the hood.
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Other than some interior mods and paint, I don't plan on too much more modification for this one.


Here's what I've done on the Off-road 57 Chevy 150. I rebuilt the front bull bar, sectioning out the stock bumper and incorporating it into the frame more. Now the bull bar is attached directly to the front frame horns rather than curling over the stock bumper.
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I also repainted the roof to give the car a more rough appearance. I still want to paint a bit more and do weathering, plus add wiring and such to the motor.
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Finally, I got around to doing a bit more work on the Red XA. I decided to switch from the Crown Victoria wheels to the Ford 12-slotters from a 69 Torino Talladega. They required a bit of modification to work as they didn't have good tires on them (too short and skinny). So, i kept the tires I had used before but modded and switched out the rims. On the back it was a simple swap, but the front crown vic tires were too wide and the rims were loose in there. So I had to squeeze part of the old tires inside to shim them out unitl the rims stayed put.
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After that, I wanted to build the side pipes for the exhaust. I made several failed attempts to bend styrene tube with brass rod inside, aluminum tube, and styrene tube heated to a pliable texture with a heat gun. Finally, while digging around for some hardware, I noticed a roll of silver solder that was perfect for the job. It's soft enough to bend easily, but stiff enough to hold the shape well. I measured 4 lengths of it, epoxied them together and bent the shapes I needed, then I drilled out the ends and voila - side pipes! They even fit beautifully in the shorter space between the door and the wheel well on the 71 mustang I'm using.
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I also added the Dark Horse Bat decal from madmaxmodels.com as I decided against painting it myself. With a bit of trimming, it fits pretty well. I trimmed down the headlights on the front as well. Paint needs to be finished and then I can start final permanent assembly of all the parts. I need to make a fuel door and some skull emblems for the C-pillars, but that's about it.
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby weelz » Wed Nov 30, 2011 2:41 pm

im in awe of that interceptor now! looks fantastic mate. lovin the updates, exhausts on the XA look cool, may have to pinch some solder from work for if i need to make any more piping haha. gonna look brilliant when finished
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby ramfett » Wed Nov 30, 2011 3:51 pm

Thanks a lot!

The solder works really well, it's an absolute dream to work with after what I tried with the styrene and aluminum tubing. It would work great for the pipes that come out of the fenders on the Landau. And one of the best parts is you don't have to paint it...it's already nice and shiny!

Thanks for all your kind words, I'm really happy to finally be getting close to finishing the XA after roughly a year's worth of on-and-off work.
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby Big Bopper Bart » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:43 am

The Red XA looks soo spot on now with the Torino Talledega rims on it. Glad you found one after I told you about it. If I didn't give mine to my nephew and let him destroy it I woulda sent you the rims for free. Great job on the car and the Tri 5's too
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby toecutter » Sat Dec 03, 2011 12:34 pm

If you want genuine 1:18 falcon coupes, i can source Classic Carlectable 1:18 XA and XB coupes for 130-140 Australian. if you want 1:24 scale Falcon Coupes, Models56 have them at their website - although they are slightly caricatured in that jada dubwheels style.

PM me if interested.
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby ramfett » Sat Dec 03, 2011 2:12 pm

Thanks, Bart. And thank you for suggesting the Torino Talladega...I bought it right after you told me about the 12-slotters it had, (I mentioned it in an earlier post) but it took awhile to figure how to get the rims to work with bigger tires. After I harvested the 12-slotters, I got sad looking at the Torino just sitting with no wheels, so it's now getting a set of GMP's Cragar Soft-8 steelies. They actually look a lot better than the 12 slotters on it (The Cragars come with nice fat tires on them).
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby PursuitSpecial » Fri Dec 16, 2011 2:59 pm

HUMVEE Driver wrote:THAT... is some truly top-notch work. I'm going to be following your progress with interest!

The space between the door and the rear wheels seems awfuly slim. How are you going to work out fitting the exhaust pipes in there?

Would you mind if I posted your work on my website, http://www.madmaxmodels.com?

Also, you don't seem to need help with any painting, but I have a bat decal for the red XA. You're welcome to use it.

http://www.madmaxmodels.com/redxadecal.html

Thanks for sharing your work!

HUMVEE Driver


Here's the face of the bat from the movie car up close:

Batcarfront.jpg
Batcarfront.jpg (63.34 KiB) Viewed 1460 times
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Re: 1/18th Custom Diecasts

Postby ramfett » Fri Dec 16, 2011 3:31 pm

I appreciate it, but as you can see in the most recent pictures I posted, I went with the decal on madmaxmodels.com. I attempted to paint a few bats in small scale on paper, but I couldn't get the level of detail I wanted. If I try another stab at building the XA, which i'm considering, I will certainly use this picture as reference to paint my own decal to scan and reduce. I'll retain it for future use, so thanks.
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