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Construction of a Continental Mark II model, scale 1:12


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Today, I took the decision to paint the underside of the hood and trunk lid. With the exception of 2 or 3 dust grains (can be polished when dry), I’m pleased with the paint. It’s certainly not an original color, but it has to please me first! I took also another decision: the original Mark II hood has a blanked for noise and heat absorption; I will skip it. I’m getting tired to make one more element and one more, and so on. There are 2 other reasons I’m skipping it: what king of material is suitable for that and how to attach it to the hood without wrinkles? It will be considered as a special order!

The last picture attached is from the real blanket for better understanding.

921 final paint.JPG

922 final paint.JPG

Underside hood (3).jpg

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Thanks for the positive comments! It seems that my color choice is not that bad: the original dark blue was to dark and the light blue metallic...well, not exactly my taste. Liz Taylor Mark II has also a non standard blue metallic, very similar to the car from William Clay Ford. From your pictures, I see that the blue leather is not a standard color either. The blue I got is similar to the one from Mr. Ford. I choose to keep the original engine/transmission as performance is not an issue!.

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Thanks Dan! Still looking at that slow thread...

 

To Dileep: Hood and trunk lid have an insulation glued to the inner skin before it's assembled to the inner structure. I will replicate that with black tape like on the picture. The black pieces are not yet installed, I have t sand them to remove the gloss. There is an ongoing question in the Mark II forum about the correct color of the original blanket. In any case, it's not black.

923 insulation.JPG

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This insulation material is a good food for discussions: painted, not painted? As you know, that material is attached to the outer skin, then the inner structure is welded to the skin. During the painting process, some overspray is going on the material. Depending of the nature of the insulation material, that overspray is hardly or clearly visible. On the cars I restored, the overspray was hardly visible. On your truck, that material is probably more "paint friendly" and easy to paint. On your Mercury, I bet that the overspray in that location is negligible.  

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I just re-read my post and meant to say trunk not truck. I just looked at my trunk on the Merc and I thought it was painted, but Roger is correct. It has over spray around the edges of the insulation material. I'm sure Roger will do what is correct for his model. No matter which route he goes it will look great.

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The original tar paper insulation would absorb much of the paint that was oversprayed onto it, giving the appearance that it was not painted at all.  The paint layer is relatively thin on the underside of the trunk usually, too.

 

I like the tape idea for the insulation!  The car is looking awesome.

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On December 21, I could reach the chromed parts. Nothing was lost which was a concern as some parts were attached to the tree only with a small soft solder point. All chromed parts are good looking, even the hood ornament. Unfortunately, back home I opened the cage with the letters. If the nickel coat seems to be good, I just could not take the letters out: they are all glued to themselves and to the cage. I will have to go back in January to remove the nickel plating. I will have 2 choices: either let the letters in their brass finish, give a thin coat of clear and let them that way or soft solder the letters on a strip of brass; once chromed, I will have to heat the strip and push the letters away once by one.

 

The sanding of the body is still an on-going task; the picture is showing how useful a kitchen can be! You will note that the body is now back on the frame. This is needed to align the front fenders correctly with the main body. Right now, the RH front fender has still some issues; the end of sanding is near!

 

 

924 the sanding booth.JPG

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Roger,

 

Merry Christmas and I hope that you had a wonderful holiday. 

 

And I was asking about the small letters in the basket in our previous email.  How sad.  I am sure that you will remedy  the issue.  And I see your "other half" has no issue with you using her sink to wet sand the car.  Some women would have a fit if they found their man in the kitchen doing what you are doing.  Even though it is all washed down the drain. 

 

Roger, you see a lot of small scale cars from 1:18, 1:24 etc., etc.  The difference with those models is that your model is an exact example of the 1:1.  From the cut outs on the package tray to the ribs in the trunk and floor boards.  Those details are not put into the small scale models.  Your car ,er, model is so realistic.  It is baffling how great it looks.  Following the  thread from the beginning, we understand how you have arrived at this juncture.  When the car is complete and on display, the average individual will not know what is under the "skin" of this Continental.  But we will.

 

Looking forward to your next post.

 

Randy

 

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Randy, fortunately, there is some tolerance from my other halve, even when the kitchen is used as a spray booth! I'm cleaning the mess to have still some peace!

The letter problem will be solved one way or the other.

Indeed, I'm putting to many unseen details once the model will be completed. Fortunately, I'm not doing that for a living!

 

Before I’m spraying the color coat at the inner side of the fenders, I had to do the air ducts used for the ventilation. On the original cars, they are made with a flexible hose. These hoses were a problem for me because they are hidden behind the blower motors and the hinges. To have flexible ones would prevent that the other end is going at the right place as the hood, engine, blower motors does not allow a good view. One solution was to skip them, nobody would notice. As I’m a bit stubborn, I decided to do them with brass. I rolled a flat piece to get a tube, silver soldered the joint and began to remove slices to shape a curve. The first trial was discarded because I miscalculated the final length. The second one has now a strange shape but the third one is almost “perfect”. To be honest, I’m glad that they will be hard to notice! One end is inserted into the “T” at the front fender and, with the proper orientation, they are falling onto the metal duct attached to the body when the fender is put in place. Once a coat of matt paint will be applied, they will be OK.

 

Happy new year to all!

 

 

925 Air duct.JPG

926 Air duct.JPG

Edited by Roger Zimmermann (see edit history)
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Roger....if you don't go completely insane during this build or after this model is finished, I will really be surprised. Your dedication to detail is so refreshing and a little crazy, but I am LOVING it!

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Roger,

To make duct tubes that no one will see after the car is assembled (like most of the components) testifies to your exactness in building this model.  You will know that the tubes are there and besides the  individuals that are following this thread, no one else will know.

 

I really like the blue that you picked.  It is an elegant color and will show well with the blue and white interior.  Trimmed in chrome accents, this car, er model, will be striking.  And with power roll up windows, operating lights it will be beyond words to describe. 

 

It would have been beyond the realm if you had devised a "horn" that operated from the horn ring in the steering wheel.  BUT...................a line has to be drawn somewhere.  I was totally blown away with the fact that you have made operating power windows and seats.  If that doesn't totally blow the onlooker away when they are seeing the model, nothing will.  We all shake our head in amazement with your progress and fineness.   

 

It is really getting exciting because now you are near to painting the body.  And after the body is painted, then the assembly will commence.  Now THAT will be what we will all look forward to........seeing the car "come together" so to speak. 

Awaiting your next post.  

 

Randy 

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When I did the Toronado, the turn indicator lever was indeed functionning.  Unfortunately, the electronic device created by a friend did not acted as intended. Now, the lever can be moved without further function...To have a horn operated by the horn ring is another matter. It could certainly be done with the proper Equipment. Futile? for sure!

Yes, the paint process is very near! The body will not be pefect, but were the original cars perfect? 

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Roger,

 

The factory tried to reach perfection in their paint shops.  Certainly today they are perfectly applied coatings.  This is due to the fact that 95% of the auto companies utilize robotics to do the paint.  Back in the fifties, it was all by hand.  You being the representative for GM in Europe knew first hand how the cars came to Europe from the factories.  How much of the issues were "paint and body" that you dealt with? 

 

Knowing your exactness, the "fit and finish" on the Continental will be as perfect as it can be because we all see what you are accomplishing here.  

 

If there are any flaws, only you will know where they are.  

 

Randy

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During "my" time at GM, the cars coming from the USA were far from perfect. The more expensive the cars, the worse they were! On some Buick Park Avenue, there was en small dent at the end of the LH rear quarter on every car! It was small, most people did not notice, but I had a customer who was upset. On each Cadillac Seville, the gap at the LH sail panel to the door window frame was awful (in my eye), the other side was perfect. Obviously, the guy cleaning the joint between the rood and sail panel was at the wrong job position. There were other flaws I don't remember...The paint was far from perfect too with dust, thin paint, orange peel and so on. Since that time, things improved; the 2011 Cad DTS I bought was in a good shape, but panel alignment is not as good as the ones from an Audi or Mercedes.

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That is all why the US car industry nearly fell over. The orientals were better made, didn't leak oil and more reliable. The US makers had to tidy up their act to compete. The British car and motorcycle industries suffered the same fate. Now most of the brands are owned by Chinese or Indian investors.

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12 hours ago, Spinneyhill said:

That is all why the US car industry nearly fell over. The orientals were better made, didn't leak oil and more reliable. The US makers had to tidy up their act to compete. The British car and motorcycle industries suffered the same fate. Now most of the brands are owned by Chinese or Indian investors.

You are absolutely correct. The US industry needed about 20 to 25 years to be more or less competitive again. The English industry? I used to work for Vauxhall in the mid seventies. It was a nightmare...At the time Vauxhall had "only" to assemble the body from the Opel Rekord to get the Vauxhall Carlton, they were not even able to weld to body properly. I will not write here what I'm thinking about the English people as workers, I could get too many ennemies.

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1 hour ago, Roger Zimmermann said:

the English people as workers

The power of the unions might have had something to do with it too. They forced the company to hire people who couldn't. And then they couldn't sack them.

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19 minutes ago, Spinneyhill said:

The power of the unions might have had something to do with it too.

Certainly. Unfortunately, if Mrs Thatcher broke the unions, this came too late to rescue the automotive industry. Unions are still a pest in many countries.

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As a Brit I couldn't agree more. There's nothing fundamentally wrong with our skills but when bad or lazy workers are protected so well by employment laws and union powers, they can escape the punishment that would otherwise "focus their mind" ;-)

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Roger,

 

To the Englishman's comments.  I owned several English cars.  My first was a 1960 MGA 1600.  Even though Morris Garage had an Italian designer revamp the body into a striking sports car, it still was sitting on the MG frame, engine and electrics.  The first lesson in Lucas Electrics is:  that it is a constant lesson.  But it was a fun car when it ran.  In 2005, I found a restoration shop here in San Diego who was completing a 1960 MGA 1600 Roadster.  The difference between this car and the first was that the latter was better than a new car coming off of the assembly line.  I won many awards with that car as it was a 100 point car.  But still, there was always something to attend to...................

 

As a former owner of several early 70's Jaguar XJ6s, I really loved that car line.  For the most part, they were of sound design.  Where they had trouble was trying to get them altered to comply with the smog laws coming onto the scene in the US.  Prior to 1974, my 73 XJ6 ran like a sewing machine.  I loved working on that car.  It was a chore (but doable) to adjust the Stromberg   carbs.  Adjusting the valve clearances with tappet shims, adjusting the timing and dwell were all part of an occasional  Saturday that I enjoyed. When I was done, what a sense of accomplishment to have that car purr like a cat!  AND the car rode like a dream. 

 

Not big and boxy like the American cars or big and heavy like the Rolls Royce or Mercedes but nimble and agile.  Sitting in the cockpit ensconced in Connaly  hides, wool carpeting and burlwood dash trim. There was an "aroma" to a Jaguar.  There wasn't a better hi way car made.   If you ever owned or drove one for any period of time, you will know what I mean.  My 74XJ6  and 75 XJ6C were beautiful machines but Lucas's foray into electronic ignition wasn't so hot.  (Left me on the side of the road several times till I changed out the distributor for an aftermarket specialty company who addressed that issue).  Jags and Rolls Royces were not make like the rest of the English cars. They were quality in materials and workmanship.  Fit and finish were paramount to Jaguar.  Their lines are classic even to this day.     

 

US smog laws practically killed the Jag in the late seventies.  And the poor XJ12.  We won't even start on that one. The British engineers just didn't have a clue about overheating issues.  Hot weather and 12s just didn't mix.  Jaguar was rescued by Ford and further improved when Tata acquired  Jaguar.  A beautiful car today. 

 

Now most of the cars going down the road (except for a few) all look alike.  You have to get up close to read the badge on the hood or the script on the rear of the car to know what you are looking at.  Not like the 50's when we could identify a car by its grill, body shape, trunk etc., etc.   You certainly could identify a Continental cruising down the road.  Magnificent and stately.  Fit for a King or Queen.  

 

It is nice that you are modeling that car.  Elegant and classy.

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Obviously you know English cars better than me! I don't doubt that you had pleasure with the ones you had. My remark about the English industry was certainly biased with my Vauxhall experience; not everything coming from there was bad, this was not my point! However, with the help of the unions, the industry disappeared. Only when foreign manufacturers bought the best makes, they could survive...

 

Another small remark: the US smog laws almost killed his domestic industry too (plus the bad product quality). When I began the job with US cars in 1988 or 89, so many engines would stall without reason. This period was really not fun, having to deal with frightened/disappointed/furious customers. Fortunately, things improved in the nineties!

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Another important step towards the completion: the door jambs and inner front fender are painted. I'm attaching a picture of my spray booth. After the paint session, I cleaned the kitchen myself. I did also several other small parts with the same blue paint. The same will be done to the main body: firewall, trunk lid gutter, A and B pillars. I have first to correct a rocker panel which is not good.

 

927 Spray booth.JPG

928 Paint.JPG

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Roger,

 

Wow.  We are getting close to seeing the car painted!  It won't be too long before the car is assembled and all the elements are applied, bringing your years of toil to fruition.   Exciting times in the Continental's construction.

 

Randy

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Indeed both rocker panels were not so good. To improve them, I had to rework the lower quarter panels…A never ending story!

Now, there is one step more towards the painting of the body by putting a blue coat in the door’s apertures, firewall and trunk gutter. The temptation is great to install some elements on the firewall, but I will leave the body for a couple of days until the paint is fully dry.

 

 

 

929 Masking the body.JPG

930 Spray booth.JPG

931 Painted firewall.JPG

932 Painted firewall.JPG

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Thank you Laughingcoyote.

I'm new here and I coulda, woulda, shoulda done that "clicking" as you suggest but I was afraid I'd somehow lose the thread and perhaps the whole site. That has happened to me so many times with interesting sites that I've accidentally stumbled upon -- such as happened to me with this one.

I suppose I should also say "Thanks" for making me stay up all tonight in order to read all this fascinating material!

RB

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