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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
So I have been plodding along at my usual pace - my workrate notably below par when compared to some of the other Hobby Talkers here in attendance regularly. However, on occasion, I make some progress on the piles of "future projects" and "cool ideas" and I can take a break from the hustle and bustle (ahem) to make a few snaps and update what's been going on.

Anyway, I've been dinking with a resin copy of a Chevy Laguna S3 stock car for a few months. The Laguna was a slick-nosed Chevelle used by Chevy teams on the NASCAR superspeedways in the mid '70s before everyone moved to the slippery Olds 442 in the late '70s

I copied a diecast body I had in mold rubber but was dissatisfied with the end result -- the rubber (aging as it was, and quick-setting) trapped a few air bubbles in bad spots. Also, I had molded the windows in for ease of casting. However, the mold was going to need a re-do anyway because of the bubbles, so I thought I would try casting the windows separately. Well for a first attempt at window molding they turned out good. Here is a picture of the diecast body I am using, with the first white test shot window installed. The original window, trimmed to just front and back glass, is also shown:



As a side benefit, before re-tooling the mold I popped off 6 copies of the Laguna body as I tried different little silicone patches. From those bods, I hacked away a couple noses and found that with a little trimming, they could be made to fit the AFX / JL Chevelle body. Would there be some interest in a Laguna conversion kit?



Also, in the same vein, you ever walk into a bar or a garage or race shop and see half of a race car hung up on a wall or hanging from a ceiling? Would any of the resident Hobby Talk shops have a need for a half of a Chevy Laguna S3 race car? Maybe painted up in vintage Darrell Waltrip Gatorade colors, or AJ Foyt Gilmore red? And how about some quarter panels on a work bench or laying in the background? Just thinking out loud for some possible uses for these 6 'spearmint Laguna bods:



Since I got the new mold rubber, I also did a needed re-vamp on my '77 Monte Carlo stock car bod. The old mold rubber had a shore hardness factor just shy of cement, and part of the mold had ripped (shocking, right?). Anyway, I re-did the mold and the first body out of it was pretty good, so I might run this car in our Nostalgia class this year:



I have a few Monte Carlo bits also, from the last bod pulled from the defective mold - a big-ass hood, trunklid with spoiler and right front fender (seems those always need re-placing on race cars):



Anyway, that's the update. I'll get a pic of the Laguna body posted when I get it out of the mold and get some paint & decals on it. Let me know if there is any interest in any of the parts and other bits for the shop dioramas. :wave:
 

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Hey Doba,
Great job on the casting!
I'm definitely interested in the S3, S3 noses and the repops of the Montes.
You make it look so easy.

Rich :thumbsup:
 

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Doba ,

I'm anxious to see the Monte in full dress. It appears it's mounted on a HP 2 or HP7. Will it fit the TYCO 440 x2 ?

I wouldn't need any of the parts but I am interested in the 01 dirt car. I know it's die cast but could you elaborate on how and where to get the car and how to adapt it to a chassis.

Thx , Gonzo
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Doba ,

I'm anxious to see the Monte in full dress. It appears it's mounted on a HP 2 or HP7. Will it fit the TYCO 440 x2 ?

I wouldn't need any of the parts but I am interested in the 01 dirt car. I know it's die cast but could you elaborate on how and where to get the car and how to adapt it to a chassis.

Thx , Gonzo
Sure, I should have some time again tomorrow - It's so easy a . . . well, you know the rest. :tongue:
 

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Yer new handle reminds of a place we used to eat lunch...a greazy plywood shack down in Auburn Wa. Caveman Kitchen If it didnt move it got BBQ'ed. Awesome food. LOL

Cool Stuff Doba. Always wanted to see more of the inner workings of yer operation. Looks like you've made good headway!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
. . . I am interested in the 01 dirt car. I know it's die cast but could you elaborate on how and where to get the car and how to adapt it to a chassis.

Thx , Gonzo
OK Gonzo here is the step-by-step, a few days late, but we had a little family crisis to deal with in the last few days. Anyway . . .

The diecast car is an ADC diecast 1/64th scale dirt late model. I get them thru feeBay, just do a search in the diecast car & trucks section. I have a Bobby Labonte car that I will use for this demonstration.



The car is held together with a pair of phillips screws at the front and at the back, much like a tjet.



The chassis goes unused in my conversion, however, with some tinkering you could probably use the rims & tires, or maybe even re-attach the fuel cell and roll bars at the back of the car, but I digress . . .



More in a minute . . .
 

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The next piece to deal with is to get the plastic driver tub out of the body. A hobby knife is fine for this -- just cut thru the plastic at the rivet with a pair of cuts, then use a little thumb pressure persuasion to slide the tub past the rivets and out of the way.



You can put the tub back in the chassis and throw the screws in the tub and roll the chassis out of the way - we're done with it. It makes a nice diorama piece at this point.



Now I prefer the Tyco HP7 chassis for metal body conversions -- it has a nice balance of power and slide and works well with the added weight of an all-metal body. Here is how the HP7 looks under the body in long wheelbase setting:



More in a minute . . .
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Now we have to mount the chassis to the body. To do this, I have found clear silicone to be ideal for a number of reasons. One, it is easy to use and easily removed if you FUBAR something. Two, it grips the chassis with a rubber-like grip which is better than a solid grip when it comes to metal bodies. Believe me, from years of racing metal bodied slot cars, every bump transfers thru the chassis into the body. The silicone is like a damper for this -- Perfect. And three, you end up with the body mounted straight and level without having to dink around too much. This means more time racing, less time stressing on getting the body mounted.

You can use the chassis you want to run for this, or you can use a blank roller - doesn't matter. We just need a chassis with tires on it. Start off by using a Q-tip or other brand cotton swab to smear a little vaseline along the edge of the chassis by the mounting tabs. Also, be sure to get a little on the frame rail behind the front tires. Basically anywhere silicone could end up touching the side of the chassis. The vaseline will act as a release agent later.



I use clear DAP silicone for this -- you could another clear or colored silicone, wouldn't matter.



I put three little beads of silicone on the edge of the chassis, along the lower chassis lip, right over the top of the vaseline.



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Next, I put three decent sized dabs of silicone inside the body, starting at the front of the rear fender and stopping short of the back of the front fender:



Now, you take your chassis and install it into your body. You will have some silicone ooze-age out the bottom and a little on the rear tires possibly, so this is why a blank roller that you don't care much out is nice at this stage.



I just take my index finger and wipe away the excess off the bottom (have a napkin or tissue handy). Anything on the tires I don't really worry about -- it isn't much if you didn't overdo it with the silicone.



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Now, you need some flat toothpicks to set the ride height for the nose and the clearance and location of the rear tires. In this pic, I have slid a flat toothpick between the fender and the rear tires. The toothpick is set to the back a little to center the tires in the wheel opening. Similarly, a toothpick under the front fenders helps to keep the body from moving backward while the silicone dries -- it DOES NOT set the ride height of the nose, however, that is handled at the front of the car in the next pic:




I glued a pair of toothpicks on a spare bit of straight track for this, but you can do this part with loose toothpicks also. Anyway . . . use the flat toothpicks under the nose of the car to keep the body up above the rails while the silicone dries. You might have to diddle around with the front fender toothpick to get this right, and re-check the rear toothpick to keep everything aligned, but believe me it is easier than it sounds to do this:



Notice how the stock Tyco fronts tuck neatly right behind the rear lip of the front fender. If you finish with this project and have a rub at the front, narrow up your tire track width here by moving your rims in closer to the frame rails and it should clear.



More in a minute . . .
 

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I should also say that when you are lining everything up with the chassis, tires, fenders, nose & toothpicks, that you want to be sure to eyeball and feel where the body is sitting in relation to the chassis; i.e. the body should be straight over the chassis, not cocked to the left or right. You can spot this by checking that the rear tires are tucked in evenly side to side under the fenders at the back, and that the fronts are tucked in evenly side to side at the front.

So once everything is lined up, let the car and chassis sit for a day or overnight. When you come back to it after it has dried, you will be able to pull the chassis out from under the body. The silicone will stick to the body and leave an exact imprint of your chassis tabs. On the chassis, all you will have left on it is some of the vaseline which is easily wiped away with another dry Q-tip.



Now if you had any silicone get across the fender gap and onto the rear tires, you will want to take a hobby knife and cut the silicone back to the edge of the fender. Likewise, you could trim some of the excess silicone away as long as you retain where the chassis tabs will grip the body.

Notice how on the finished product the rear tires are centered nicely and the fronts are tucked in behind the front air dam:



At the front the nose sits nice and level with plenty of room to clear the rails:



All set to go racing -- you could glue in a little shelf under the hood and re-mount the air cleaner I guess, but it would probably get knocked off when racing . . . I like to just leave the open hole.



So there ya go -- do a couple and you will agree that it is so easy a caveman could do it.
 

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Good stuff doba. Some handy ideas there. Charger bodies look interesting???
Thanks and well-spotted -- the Chargers are some resins I am working on. I have to make a cast for the windows yet.
 

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Ok 'doba...

So in terms of day-to-day chassis-to-body mounting, with your silicone method on a diecast body , it's the silicone that provides "the give" while inserting a chassis. Whereas on a normal plastic Tyco body it's the body itself that flexes around a chassis and grips it... right? How long lasting are the silicone mounting blobs? Ever consider trying this with other brands of chassis? Mega-G for example? Seems this might be a method that would translate into other brands too. :thumbsup: nd
 

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So in terms of day-to-day chassis-to-body mounting, with your silicone method on a diecast body , it's the silicone that provides "the give" while inserting a chassis. Whereas on a normal plastic Tyco body it's the body itself that flexes around a chassis and grips it... right? How long lasting are the silicone mounting blobs? Ever consider trying this with other brands of chassis? Mega-G for example? Seems this might be a method that would translate into other brands too. :thumbsup: nd
Exactly Dave -- the silicone has a little flex to it for easy mount & dis-mount.

I have mounted up the Tomy SRT chassis with this method - in fact I raced a Life Like Corvette body with SRT chassis in our sports car league this summer with this mounting method. The silicone sticks to the body great and won't come off -- If you want to re-do them just take a sharp hobby knife and slice the silicone off as close to the body as you can and start over with re-mounting.

I would assume any chassis that you can smear the vaseline on at all the contact points could be molded and released from any other body. This method of mounting is a "Plan B" method I started using when my attempts at molding mounting tabs into bodies went into the toilet. I just was no good at it, but this works well for me and achieves the same result.
 
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