Ford Thunderbird 1955

Discussion in 'Commercial & Civilian Vehicles' started by niebla de fuego, Feb 8, 2014.

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    Ford Thunderbird 1955 - scale 1/20 paper model built by Ruben Andres Martinez


    Hello dear friends.
    It's been sometime since I last built anything. And having lost interest in the skeleton RAF Se5a, I decided to take a different challenge.

    This is a Ford Thunderbird 1955 - scale 1/20 paper model.

    The kit was originally released by Otto Maier Verlag in Germany in the year 1957. It was designed by Hubert Siegmund

    The kit was scanned and made available to the public by AGK.

    If you wish, you can download it from here: http://www.kartonmodellbau.org/publikationen/download-ford-thunderbird.shtml.de

    Beware that the instructions are in German.


    I will show a construction report, and a rough translation of the instructions in every step in case somebody is interested in building this kit too.



    The kit was printed on 200 gsm white cardstock using laser printer.


    Chassis
    Parts 1-3


    Cut out where indicated. Fold where necessary according to the lines. Attach parts #2 and #3 to the designated points (in parentheses) on part #1.

    Note that the flaps of the front and rear fenders fold alternately to the inside and the outside. The inside tabs will hold the hoods, and the outer tabs will hold the side parts.


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    Internals
    Parts 4-9a

    Before anything else, pre-shape part #4 folding where indicated and slightly curve the seat part to ensure a proper and easy fit. Before closing part #4 make sure that you curve and glue part #5 (the shift gear tunnel) to part #4. Don’t forget to cut and glue the pedals and the carpets at this point. If you wish you can use a pin as the shift changer.

    Then attach the seat and the front wall to the side walls. Glue part #6 to part #4 covering the dashboard and gluing where indicated on the side tab, and then attach part#7 to part #6 covering the speedometer.

    The steering wheel with its column is mounted in the end: roll part #8 and attach the steering wheel to it. Then glue to the indicated part on the dashboard. Since there will be a lot of manipulation while gluing the windshield and the sides of the model, there is always the risk of snapping the steering wheel. So if you wish, you can leave it aside and be the last part to glue to the model.
    Finally put the assembled inner part between the ribs of part #1 and stick to the ribs, and to the bottom of part 1. Don’t forget to glue the small vertical back tab of the seat to the vertical part #3.


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    Windshield
    Parts 10 and 10a


    This is a tricky part. Be patient and work carefully.

    Cut out the inner parts of the windshield where indicated. Carefully curve the parts to give shape. Use acetate to simulate the glass, use the contour of the part #10a as a template for it.

    Part #10 will face outside the car, while part #10a will face to the inside of the car. The acetate will be sandwiched between them.

    The long strips of parts #10 and #10 will sandwich the long upper side of the doors. Part #10a will glue inside the door. Part #10 will glue outside.
    Use the numbers in parenthesis to guide you.

    The windshield must be properly aligned with the dash lines of part #6, so that the front hood and the sides match perfectly.

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    paper hollywood likes this.
  2. Hood
    Parts 11-11b

    Score where indicated.

    Cut the upper line of the ventilation scoop grid in the middle of part #11 and turn the resulting tab upward. This will be the ventilation grill of part #11b.

    The radiator grill #11a is glued behind the front opening in part #11, glue close the front of the hood.

    Now glue the small ventilation scoop #11b on its place.


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    Trunk
    Parts12-12b

    Score where indicated.

    Glue part #12a behind the trunk and close it.

    Attach the fuel flap #12b at the specified location.

    Now mount the front hood and the trunk on the chassis. The tabs of the wheel pits can be glued to the hood and trunk through the cut-outs in the bottom of part #1.


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  3. Side sections
    Parts 13 and 14


    These parts must be preformed well. They are critical to the model. And the finish of them depends in a good degree from the way previous parts were finished.

    First pre-shape the sides of the car as accurately as possible. Round the front and rear lower corners (bumper connections). Also round the upper portion of the sides, from the headlights up to the rear where the tail begins. Do not forget to score and fold the tail fin.

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    The lower end of the parts is also rounded, so that the sides curve under the chassis of the car.


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    Once you pre-shape the sides, dry-fit them to check for problematic points where you may need to trim (or not) the paper. But if everything has worked up well to this point, chances are that you won’t need to adjust anything.

    The original instructions suggest to start gluing from the front (front bumper and headlights) and work towards the rear.

    I’ve found this may be very problematic and can lead to huge fitting issues once you reach the rear of the car.

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    If you have been careful assembling the chassis, hood, trunk, and windshield, then there is a much safer and less problematic way to glue the sides:

    First, glue the front corner aligning carefully the bumper line and the auxiliary light circle. Then glue the rear corner, also carefully aligning the bumper line.


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    After that, you can check again for fitting. You will probably see the sides match more or less accurately. If there are small deviations do not worry, once you start gluing the rest it all will fall into place.

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    If you’ve been careful there is no problem which order you choose to glue.

    Once the corners are dry, I started gluing the front wheel pits to the tabs. After that I glued the middle (door) portions to the small long tabs of the chassis, and finished with the rear part, being careful with the fin attachment to the trunk.


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    You will probably have a hard time fitting the rear pointed lights to the inside of the fins. Work patiently. Sometimes they fit like a glove, but sometimes they don’t and you’ll need to trim, crease, dampen, hammer, etc. the tail lights into place.


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    Do not worry too much about perfection in this tail lights, and remember the design of this paper kit dates back to 1957. Just try to do your best. In the end, even if there is a small misalignment, the tail will look very good.

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  4. Headlights
    Parts 15 -17 a


    Make a ring with part #15. Use the white tab to glue it from the inside (red color will be outside). Notice the small folding line at the pointed center end. This is a very light crease.

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    After making the inner ring with part #15a (the colored side will be on the inside of the ring), and glue it inside the bigger red ring. You may need to trim the inner ring slightly.

    Gently blunt the headlights #15b and glue them inside the rings from behind. Put the lights on the front on the designated places.

    Repeat the same with the parts for the other headlights.



    Parking lights
    Parts 16-18


    Make cones with parts #16 and #18, and glue to designated locations on the front.



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    Rear stop lights
    Parts 19 - 20 b

    Glue the ring #19 and close them with the discs part #19a. Finally make a cone with part #19b and glue it to the proper place in part #19a. Glue the completed stop lights to the rear of the car just below the tail fin where indicated.

    Repeat the same with the parts for the other tail light.

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    Bumpers
    Parts 21-22b


    Fold inward the tabs of the bumpers and gently bend the bumpers along the middle. The bumpers have a light “v” shape. When completed, attach them to the designated places on the chassis (front and rear).

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    Then form the bumper horns with parts #21a and #21aa and glue them to the bumpers where indicated.

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    Remember that the bumperettes with the black center are the exhausts, and they will be glued to the back bumper.

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  5. Wheels
    Parts 23 - 26c


    I can't easily explain the wheels. I prefer to invite you to watch at the original image in the instructions.

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    And compare it with the photo of the actual wheels:

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    Is an easy construction ;)

    The axles are not provided with the kit. You will need to use wood dowels or something similar to make them.

    The pit for the axles is rather easy too. But once you have the axles and the wheels there is no way to keep them in place. You will need to use an extra piece of cardstock to complete the under floor.

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  6. Now, before showing images of the finished kit, I'd like to share some improvements I made to the kit.

    Actually, I built more than one T-bird. I built the original 1957 kit, and after that I prepared a more detailed kit, just for fun, and to see what I was capable of.



    I hope the images speak for themselves.

    But if you have any question, do not hesitate to ask!


    This is a more realistic steering wheel:

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    And a metal pin and some cardstock to make a more detailed shifter.

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    Different pedals and added carpets:

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    Silver embroidery thread was used to make a new radiator grill:

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    Parts for a new ventilation scoop:

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    Small hand-cut details for the sides:

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    New wheels:

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    And new hubs:

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    I am using Revell's aluminum aquacolor paint to paint all the chrome parts.
  7. And finally...

    I am happy to present the finished product.

    Actually, three Thunderbirds were made.

    The first one is the original 1957 kit by Otto Maier.

    The second one is a digital re-color I made, trying to update the kit a bit. The differences with the original are not so striking.

    The last one is a much more detailed model, with many scratch-built parts (like mirrors, door handles and the like), and with more detailed exhausts and bumperettes. It also has a much more detailed interior.

    You will notice some mistakes and faults in all three models. I tried my best to avoid them. But I really don't mind they are there. That's why I didn't photoshopped the pictures.

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    Well, I must say I really loved to build this kit!!!

    It was the only paper kit I finished last year (2013) and it was fun to build :)

    Thanks a lot for your kind attention dear friends!