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9101 Views 68 Replies 11 Participants Last post by  Ecurie Martini
A few months back I picked up a rather sorry looking Airfix-MRRC Honda F1 with a view to renovating it - never thought I'd actually get around to doing it of course. Well, that's forums for you I suppose!

I began by stripping it down to it's component parts and giving it a general clean up:

Quite a few parts were missing: one mirror, suspension detail, drivers head and the underside of the nose. The nose was a bit of a curiosity in itself as it appeared to have a slight "V" indent and was a little short compared to my Model Cars plans. Maybe it ran like this somewhere or maybe I just had more missing from the car than I first thought?

Anyway, I set about correcting it as follows:

Armed with a tube of Chip & Dent filler and aluminium car repair mesh I made a small bridge to the underside of the nose:

This was held in place using Araldite Rapid.

After a quick fill (not one of howmet's snack breaks I might add), I lengthened the nose by gluing on a small piece of plasticard,

sanded it to shape and then hollowed it out by drilling a few small holes, finishing off the inside with a small Minicraft grinder.

Next I added more mesh and filler to cover the steering mechanism and rear motor mount cut-outs and ground out the inside of the shell to give as much room for the motor as possible:

Still more work to do but now on with the chassis...
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QUOTE I also said I wouldn't pick up a soldering iron again and my chassis aren't anything more than a frame to connect the wheels and motor together and hold the body in place

Me thinks the lad doth protest too much! Just hold the wheels together indeed - that Lotus 49 chassis has twists and bends that would do a Microsoft screen saver proud.

QUOTE Sorry to hear about your Photobucket Blues EM - there's some lovely engineering in howmet's M7A thread and David's 49B all-in-one chassis concept is quite stunning. Hope you get to see it all very soon.

I'm back in business - did Photobucket just coincidentally come backup when I cleared my browser cache or is there a lesson here?

No lesson EM, just coincidence - it's all black magic
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Ok, an american series!

I think this works if EM participates because of his access to the British postal stuff. My local tracks first, then EM, then home?

Perhaps a winter series starting October 1. Further, late entries will just be added in(in the 60s, teams often didnt quite make the first race or two!)

Are 6 tracks enough for a "World Championship"? As I said, I can use my revell track to model real race tracks. If you guys remember that stuff. The ones that work best for my stuff are: Sebring, Brands, Spa, Monza, Watkins Glen and Riverside all work in 4 lane revell, Things like Monaco, Nring do no.

So, Using EMs 2 tracks, a local routed track, at least one other local club track, and my reconfiguring the Revell to be others; we could do a series 8! (you pick the tracks). Probably finished by next Summer!

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Well, while you guys were busy organising the racing side of things (keep it up chaps!), I was preparing the guide plate and soldering up the main chassis pieces:

As you can see, I've used a standard "bash on" Scalextric contrate for now although I sort of regret it as I've just made life harder for myself should I want to change gear ratio after the motor is soldered in. Ahh well.

The front axle is next up. Not sure what I'll do yet - I may make some sort of cranked axle arrangement form brass tube and piano wire or, I could just have a "U" shaped axle carrier sandwiched between the guide and chassis plate. Hmmm... come to think of it I am hungry now - think I'll make a sandwich.

But I digress, I've also decided to run with the standard Scaley motor: good for my small home track and if David is using these too I suppose it's helps establish a sort of "Gentleman's formula". You cads running Scaleauto's know who you are - just kidding chaps!

Using this taller can meant cutting away the rear end of the shell for clearance although I should be able to get some of it back in before the car is finished.

Here it is all posed up with some "temporary" wheels (and a lump of cork!):

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That is coming along nicely John, you say the wheels are temporary but I think they look exactly right for a 1966 car. From one gentleman to another I like your views on the motor!!

The Scalauto was a joke...

The Scaley lumps a bit big isn't it?.....I thought of a 23K Universal motor, because I was going to use one of Big Al's (BWA) rear ends and the fits so well.

The motor also has plenty of torque, especially with the right gearing, but I'm happy to go along with what everyone else wants, can we just confirm it before I start work.


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Sorry about the cad thing Alan - I feel a bit of a bounder now! Too many Terry-Thomas references on the forum lately!

QUOTE The Scaley lumps a bit big isn't it?
Well, I think the photo puts the problem into perspective - there's not much room in these sixties cars!

My own motor preference is for the mild mannered Scaley but it might not fit your car and the Universal (is that the one with the double end drive shaft?) Johnson 111, 13UO, K's and others all have their own merits for this application I'm sure.
Next up, the guide plate (shortened since the previous pictures) was soldered to the front rails of the chassis. A simple "U" shaped axle carrier runs across the top of the guide plate, front rails and centre plate adding strength to the whole caboodle and holding the 3/16" i.d. brass axle tube as shown:

Hmmm... must grind down some of that solder!

The Parma guide and MRRC Cobra wheels are test fitted:

and then the motor:

Finally, a test fit of the body. Note the new cutouts to accommodate the brush assembly and contrate gear:

The shell might need a little more trimming under the nose to clear the guide although fortunately it doesn't look too far off as it is.

Btw, David - thanks for the comment on the wheels. They're definitely growing on me, becoming less temporary as each day passes! Maybe they just need some six spoke inserts and they'd be fine.
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Looks good John. I take it you have plans in the engine department to cover the cut outs. Wheels look very good by the way.


Thanks Alan. There are two chromed moldings that will hide the motor and gear: one with the engine and exhaust detail that sits over the top of the cutouts and another with gearbox/battery detail that fits to the rear. Should be OK I think
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It's looking very nice John. What decals are you planning on? I have loads of reference books and all the Motorsport magazines for 1966 and 67 if you're looking for any photographs.

Thanks for the photo offer David.

As for decals, I have some clear decal paper from Crafty Computer Paper and intend to make my own. I've had some mixed results in the past but I'm hopeful that this clear paper will work quite well when set against the white bodywork of the Honda.

I'm still undecided as to which variant, although I'm tempted to go straight for the Ritchie Ginther Monza car as depicted in the Model Cars Plans.

Incidentally I don't know if you have seen this site:

Hobby Grandprix 1/12 Tamiya Kit Manuals

This has Tamiya instruction manuals for a number of the older models including the Honda RA273 and Lotus 49 and 49B (no M7 I'm afraid howmet
) which might be of interest. I think they are a great potential resource for detailing, liveries, race numbers, etc.
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Beejay Ive finaly found the Ferrari the bad news is theres an exhaust missing .

The good news is Ive found the supershells chassis kit which goes with it .

Ill pop it in the post tommorrow.

One day Ill catalogue all the bits and pieces Ive got here it'll take about a year!!!
That link to Hobby Grandprix is very useful John and it has some excellent quality refernce pictures and some tempting kits....I musn't.

It also has a very valid tip about researching a specific car using photos from one known source to ensure accuracy.

Although the Parma guide had a certain rugged appeal, I felt it probably was a little too obtrusive sitting under the car. I therefore decided to make up a little adapter widget:

...and try the slightly smaller MRRC guide instead. Here is the chassis, also with a gear in place of the Scaley press on:

I chose red because as we all know red is faster

The motor has been in and out so many times I was beginning to worry that I might overheat the can and damage the magnets but it still seems to work well enough.

The new problem is that I seem to have erm... miscalculated on the guide clearance. Now with the braids fitted, the wheels only skim rather that sit firmly on the track. Would that be within the proxy rules I wonder? Calling Professor Fate! Can anyone suggest an alternative guide perhaps?

The chassis handles well enough but as it's not what I had intended I think I might re-re-build the front end... this one could run and run!
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This may be a surprise, but front tires commonly do NOT touch and roll!

Simply this... people build on a flat surface, but tracks are rarely FLAT!

Commercially routed tracks can have a braid recess of up to .025 inch. Some tracks, such as my Revell is more or less flush, but it has highs and lows. Old Strombecker and "classic" Scalextric can have rails as much as .020 proud. And the "flush" rail new Scalex I have seen with as much as .010.

As I run on a variety of places, as your's will.... I cannot insist on a "touch and Roll" rule because if your set up block differs from the track being used (I think the Baltimore round will be on Scalex), then the rule becomes silly.

Personally, I use my "Prof.Fate Front" which simply hinges that axle tube so that it moves up and down as the track demands! Danny Wilson was facinated by this bit and wrote about it in MCR.

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Speaking of set up blocks -
Grah, what is your chassis resting on?
It looks far too big for a normal block but what fascinates me is the surface finish. It looks more like a scale road finish for both colour and texture than anything I have seen before. It's not shiny either - it looks great, but what is it?
A wild guess is that you have found a couple of large garden tiles that happen to be perfectly set with the perfect gap between them.
But it couldn't be that . . . could it?
Tropi I havent published a pic on this thread yet but to answer your question I use an scd block dont know what john uses I'll post a pic of my lotus on fates thread if star photos working now
Well Grah, by coincidence I am also called Grah on the last Thursday of each month so perhaps Tropi means me

The chassis is photographed in the Ladybrook Valley Raceway pit lane - painted with grey plasti-kote fleck stone spray paint. Otherwise, for general work I have a block of 18mm MDF with a straight-cut routed slot and use a (quite thick) aluminium sheet as a surface for soldering.

Also, thanks for the input there Prof - as I am within the rules (well that one anyway) I shall now ruminate before doing anything drastic to the front end!
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