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


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There are small parts I never did for an unknown reason. For example, when the headlamps are closed, a shield is protecting them against dirt. On my past pictures from the front end, it’s obvious that the shields are missing. They are now added. After that, I installed the RH front fender. Another part was never done: the small braces securing the lower front end from the fenders to the radiator cradle. One is now added, I will paint it when the other one is done.

 

Some days ago, I had to remove the RH front fender: the upper pin for the door hinge was protruding too much and was pushing against the fender, creating a bulge in the polyester. Retrospectively, it explain why I had difficulties to have the lower part of the fender aligned with the door.

After one hour, everything was back in place and after a while, the bulge disappeared.

There is another part which I always wanted to do, but delayed and delayed: the front air dam. I had not too much documentation about that; I found in Google 2 decent pictures how the dam should look like. There are still more parts I will not do: left and right from the main dam, there are 2 smaller dams which are following the inner side of the frame.

As I have no more 0.2 or 0.3mm brass, I took 0.1mm material. This thin brass is giving about the same flexibility than the real one which is made with plastic!

 

 

 

70 Added parts.JPG

71 added air damm.JPG

Edited by Roger Zimmermann
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  • 2 weeks later...

Roger, someone has probably already posted this video from YouTube on this lengthy thread, but I'm going to put it up anyway because it is so striking to see a full-size version of your model in the same color scheme.

 

 

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A few vacation days in France plus some maintenance work on my 1:1 cars delayed the work on the Toronado. As I’m waiting parts for my ’57 Eldorado Brougham, I had time to finish the second front fender’s brace.

After installing the LH front fender, I checked the alignment with the pumper. Surprise! The first brace was touching the brace tying the bumper end to the main bumper. What to do? Modify the brace? No! I adapted it to the other side without too much hassle and I did another one for the RH fender.

The installation of the front bumper will not be easy: there is little distance between the bumper and the frame; unfortunately, I don’t have captive nuts inside the frame but a plate in two parts with threaded studs. How did I install the bumper years ago?

Another element is now getting my attention: the gas tank. I will do like with the Mark II: the current for the main motor will be by inserting a “fuel hose” into the tank neck.

72 added braces.JPG

73 Fuel tank.JPG

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Thanks Mike!

It seems that I forgot to write that the lower part of the gas tank is removed. This is the reason why the tank on the picture is strange looking. Plus, the remaining part is not centered on the underbody. It's that way because I have to continue the electrical job.

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With the trunk space free from wires, it's time to put some trim to hide the body work (in my case, not to protect it!). I still had some thin felt I used in the Avanti trunk. To be more authentic, this material should not be black but dark grey as some pictures I did in 1966 or 67 are showing it.

From my 3 scale models, the Toronado will be the sole one to have a full size tire/wheel stored. The wheel well's inside diameter from the Avanti is too small to accept the tire; the wheel well from the Mark II is not deep enough or the tire has a too large diameter; I had to remove some rubber at the bottom to store the wheel.

How is the spare wheel stored? Should the inner side be towards the rear or to the front? The owner's manual in the background was a nice help to solve that problem: the spare wheel is stored the same way my picture is showing it. Anyway, in a case of a flat tire, to extract that spare wheel from it's position must not be very convenient!

74 Trimmed trunk.JPG

Edited by Roger Zimmermann (see edit history)
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7 hours ago, Roger Zimmermann said:

Anyway, in a case of a flat tire, to extract that spare wheel from it's position must not be very convenient!

LoL. Not much different today! Our spares are under floor so ...

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1 hour ago, Spinneyhill said:

LoL. Not much different today! Our spares are under floor so ...

Sure, but it's not so far away from the rear bumper. In the case of the Toronado and/or Eldorado, the spare is more than 1 meter away from the bumper, and heavy on top of that!

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The spare wheel had to be secured in the trunk compartment. From the owner’s manual, I did a bracket, a strut which is anchored at the channel under both “Y” and a nut. From my old pictures, there is a cardboard on both sides of that structure. There is nothing in the middle; the spare wheel is hiding the view to the seat back’s construction. For a luxury coupe, the trim in the trunk compartment was minimalist compared to what is done now on most cars.

75 secured wheel.JPG

76 from inside.JPG

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Many a car had the spare 'relocated' wherever you could squeeze it in. I had several, and my friends had many more. The the spare was taking up the trunk and the luggage resided in whatever room remained. Change of tire sizes to the more modern 'fat' treaded tires was responsible often, so the thing would not fit into the well. But we got along as best we could. Ahhh, for the old days. 

So, Roger, you can just toss those spares in there any ol' way you like, and I'd swear that you are authentic, even if not like factory fresh. Nice work you are doing- retrofitting these things must be  a special talent you have.

Edited by Pat Hollingsworth (see edit history)
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Well, Pat, humoristic posting is sometimes difficult to understand when one is speaking a different language. Unless it's really a plain joke, I hardly take a chance to write something humoristic, I'm lacking the finesse of English. As I published the pertaining document, it's the proof I completely misunderstood your comment!

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I just think it is great that somebody like you can write posts in another language. It would be impossible for me. Unfortunately, when I was at school, here in the UK, we only learnt two languages, good English and bad English. The good English we leant in class and the bad English we learnt in the playground! Please keep up your excellent posts.

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As the trunk’s inside is done, I found it was the time to install the lid. Only 4 screws and it’s done. Really? Well, I went just a hair away from the catastrophe: Since I did the paint many years ago, I had to slam the trunk lid to close it. I expected the same after the lid installation. It was, but I had to slam the lid much stronger. I did various experiments to improve the issue, all failed. The last slamming was almost fatal: I could no more open it: the “key”, in fact a screwdriver, went to the maximum rotation but the lid stayed closed. Trying to open it with a lot of force stayed without result.  However, after a while, by lifting one end of the lid, the lid disengaged itself from the lock, without damage other than my ego. It was obvious that I had to remove the lock to see what’s wrong. Of course, I had to undo the trim near the lock…and I had to remember how, years ago, I installed the lock into the body. When it was out of the car, I opened it and saw nothing wrong. But, what is that small shiny bit of chromed metal lying on the desk? The first picture is showing the inside of the lock, without the cam.

The lock is functioning that way: a cam, operated by the key, is pushing the detent lever. Obviously, I removed too much metal to that lever when I did the lock in the past century and, to save the detent lever, I soft soldered a very thin bit of brass. The bond decided to strike and the cam had no effect anymore. With a new detent lever, that misshapen is now solved. I also had to elongate the holes in the body to position the lock assembly higher. I can now close the lid without to slam it. The last image is the “new” lock, with some grease to lube it.

 

 

78 serrure.JPG

79 repaired lock.JPG

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Thanks Mike! Indeed, on this model, it was the first time I attempted to scale down locks. The ones for the doors are as perfect as it can be at this scale, they are functioning as intended, with 2 stages like a real one. The trunk lock is not so perfect. Retrospectively, when it failed last week, I should have it completely redesigned. Indeed, I "just" did what was necessary for a correct function, but it's not my best.

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As the trim in the trunk is ready, I think it would be time to go into the passenger compartment. As the carpet was destroyed when I began this overhaul, a new one must be done with velvet, as usual. I first covered the floor with paper, cutting the excess to have a pattern to cut the velvet. I did it in one piece; I saw later from my pictures that originally I did it in 2 pieces. The main concern with that carpet is to cut away as exactly as possible the indentation which will be occupied by the chrome/rubber trim under the driver’s feet.

This time, I used a not too strong glue in case the carpet must be removed in a distant future!

With the carpet installed, I could assemble the side arm rests in the back as well as the fillers between the side trim and seat back. Those fillers are attached to the side panel with two screws, but they can only be installed when the side panel is secured to the body. The last picture is showing that detail.

80 Carpet is back.JPG

81 trim detail.JPG

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Installed the front bumper back. Not quite easy because I have no captive nuts inside the frame. Instead, I silver soldered studs on 4 plates. To secure the bumper, I glued first a bit brass to both rear most plates and inserted that assembly in the frame’s channel and searched for the hole. When I found it, I pushed on that assembly to let emerge the stud and put the nut on it. Then I did the same with the front place using the same procedure.

83 Installed front bumper.JPG

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The clamps are now added to the upper radiator hose; it was time after so many years without them!

I had a look at the hood lock; I cannot resist showing it to you, with the lock itself on the passenger side and the security catch on the driver side. Both are released by pulling the catch lever through the bumper aperture, like the original.

Before the hood can be installed, I will sand and buff it to remove the orange peel. I did this treatment to most of the body. The orange peel can be clearly seen on the attached older picture.

84 hood lock.JPG

85 Hood lock.JPG

86 clamps added.JPG

DSC02042.JPG

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 The orange peel can be clearly seen on the attached older picture.

 

Well I can't see it!

 

The lock, as are your models, I find difficult to comprehend that these are scale models and not real cars! Wonderful work.

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The hood was sanded and installed. If the picture is dark, it’s on purpose because the one with a good light was less effective. You can compare the hood with the front fender’s sides; these curved surfaces will not be sanded and buffed because the risk here is too great to go through the clear coat.

The floor mat structure was also installed; its shape is an elegant design as it makes an uninterrupted line with the dash. The junction can be seen on the picture; it’s the spot near the heater outlet. I will put some black leather paint to have it less obvious. The rubber mat itself is not yet glued on the metal part; on the picture the fit near the gas pedal is objectionable.

87 smooth paint.JPG

88 floor mat.JPG

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Lately, I’m busier with real cars than with scale models. Ah! The joy working on an underdeveloped air suspension system (1957 Cadillac Eldorado Brougham)!

Recently, I ordered small connectors for the external battery pack. Unfortunately, those connectors are too small to be practical; I ordered yesterday two different types; one will be the right one. The lack of suitable connectors is the reason why the rear seat is not yet into the model. To diminish the number of laying parts, I assembled the dash. If the attachment of the right portion of the dash is now known with the left radio knob screwed in the structure, I discovered that the left part is attached in a similar manner: the assembly is attached with a screw behind the A/C & heater control which is then glue at its place.

The fillers under the dash are in place too; the left one is needed a bit of glue to stay in place.

89 dashboard complete.JPG

90 dashboard complete.JPG

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Obviously, that overhauling process is coming to an end. I bought recently small connectors and modified that large battery box changing the output from 6V to 3V and therefore I can eliminate the smaller box.

The energy for the traction engine is done with the “fuel nozzle” inserted into the filler pipe. As the space to insert the nozzle is rather limited, I could construct a system which is satisfactory; therefore, I could reinstall the fuel tank.

With this positive experience, I will replace the system I did for the Mark II with a similar design. Due to different filler tube diameter, I cannot use the same nozzle for both cars!

The electrical engine is connected to a centrifugal clutch and to a 2-speed transmission providing also a reverse, park and neutral. The gears are selected by the lever at the steering column. With the front seat and steering wheel installed, it’s very cumbersome to move that lever, plus the bracket in the engine compartment acting as a relay is way too weak. This will stay as an experiment, totally useless!

The current for the windows and headlamps will come from the battery box; a connector is laying into the trunk. To operate the various systems, it will be necessary to open the trunk and connect the battery box. With that in place, the rear seat was installed as well as the front seat for which I had to replace the string. I’m also satisfied how the seat is functioning.

I still have to glue the back window in place. Who knows, maybe I will find another small repair to perform!

 

91 Installed fuel tank.JPG

92 Power to the traction engine.JPG

93 the fuel nozzle.JPG

94 Current for windows and seat.JPG

95 Stored connector.JPG

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2 hours ago, Roger Zimmermann said:

The electrical engine is connected to a centrifugal clutch and to a 2-speed transmission providing also a reverse, park and neutral. The gears are selected by the lever at the steering column. With the front seat and steering wheel installed, it’s very cumbersome to move that lever, plus the bracket in the engine compartment acting as a relay is way too weak. This will stay as an experiment

 

I find all this work you do fascinating and at the same time 'mind blowing'. I just can't imagine myself ever being able to work on such small components.

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As noted previously, the transmission is hardly to operate with the shift lever. Is a look inside the transmission useful? Who knows…

The 13 screws were quickly removed; I just noticed that I did a gasket with blue RTV material, a product I do hate since I restored real cars. The transmission itself is very simple: a group of gears is sliding on the output shaft, allowing reverse, first and second gear. They are moved with the help of a cart, guided with two rods. The problem is at the steering column; I noticed during installation that the tube for the transmission is not moving freely. To improve it, I should remove again the steering column, carpet, dash…Sounds “déjà vu”!

As it makes no sense, the transmission pan was installed again, and the gear put in neutral.

I still have to glue the back window (not a big deal); I can say that the Toronado is now completed and ready to sleep another 50 years!

96 without pan.JPG

97 simple gear box.JPG

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As the Toronado is now ready (the back window is glued), it's time to relate the story from my first real model. All what I did before was dictated by the frustration not having toys detailed enough with, for example, opening doors.

 

The story about my 1:12 Studebaker Avanti

 

Since a boy, I was always fascinated by cars. There were some cars in the small village at the countryside where I grow up, especially VWs (I will never understand why this ugly thing, noisy, unpractical was sold in such quantities). I believe that one of both grocers from the village had a early fifties green 2-door Chevrolet; this was probably the king of the village!  

Ironically, my parents had no car et never had one. If by chance a Studebaker was parked at one of both cafés from that 300 inhabitant's village, I could stay hour(s) to look at it. The 1950 model was the one which started it all.

We are going forwards for some years: in 1963, the Studebaker Avanti was shown at the Geneva Show; I'm sure that I was a nuisance for the stand's personal as I could not away from this stand!

I will not relate here all my attempts to recreate cars during my youth using cardboard and a frame done with the Meccano kit. The last vehicle done with this hybrid material was a 1963 Chrysler. I did for this model an innovation: by wetting the cardboard, it could be better shaped in both directions at once. This is the first image.

After the Geneva show adventure, I had to replicate this Avanti. At that time, I was 18 years old; my father, a wood worker, had not the right tools for my needs. Anyway, I began to do a frame using as a guide the image from the sales catalog I reluctantly got in Geneva. My father had some galvanized sheetmetal; I used that for that frame.
Why did I choose the scale 1:12? Probably because the available skinny Meccano wheels were suitable for that scale. The construction went muck quicker than what I did in the recent years; there were less details and the resemblance was...marginal at best! This is the second image.

I was proud from my front suspension and steering system miles away from the reality, third picture.

The main idea was to do again a body using my "new" technique with wet cardboard. However, one of my colleague at the apprenticeship told me that I would get much better results using polyester and fiberglass (he was living in a town and me in the countryside, what a difference!). It was totally new for me and I had to do my experiences with that product. A small story about it I still remember: the instructions stated that it was important to have about 25°C to allow the polyester to set. I waited that my parents went away a Sunday afternoon to heat like hell the furnace in the living room using wood to get the desired temperature, even more, for my first experience. As it was probably autumn or winter, all windows were closed. I still hear the exclamations from my parents about the heat and the bad smelling when they came back!
I learned quickly enough that a positive mold was necessary as first. Then, as a second step, a negative form should be done using the positive mold. Finally, the negative mold is to be used to get the final part. How easy it was with cardboard: not overheating needed, no bad smell and quickly done!
How could I do the positive mold? I choose probably by accident the plaster. Not the one used by the sculptors but the cheap one to do walls and ceilings!
It's easy to work with once it's dry (sometimes too easy) and it's doing a lot of dust. This later aspect was not important, the shop from my father was full of wood dust. A little more did not matter. The fourth and fifth pictures are showing the plaster.

Me at work, probably 1965 or 1966, sixth photo.

The first result can be seen at the last picture.

 

Chrysler.jpg

7 Châssis initial.JPG

8 Suspension avant.JPG

0 Plâtre.jpg

01 Moule en plâtre.jpg

02 Working to the model.jpg

03 During the construction.jpg

Edited by Roger Zimmermann (see edit history)
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