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Hudson Miniatures 1900 Packard

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  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Hudson Miniatures 1900 Packard
Posted by Don Stauffer on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 12:08 PM

I have started a 1900 Packard, a kit by Hudson Miniatures.  This was a 1949 kit in the era when plastics for model kits were pretty new.  It has plastic wheels, steering wheel, and head and cowl lights.  The rest of the kit was balsa wood and cardboard.

This is real nostalgia.  When I started modeling, car kits were all wood, with composition (a mix of plastic and sawdust) wheels.  Some kits included cardboard parts.  I find it really fun to be putting this thing together.

Here is the body, well underway.

The springs are glued up from strips of cardboard.  Because this kit is so old, the cardboard has really dried out, and the cardboard wants to crease and break rather than bend smoothly.  The picture shows the front springs, using the kit cardboard.  I am planning to switch over to styrene strips for the rear wheels.

Balsa has a very open grain and takes a lot of effort to fill (if I am scratchbuilding a wooden car I use basswood- much tighter grain).  A few times on a balsa kit car I have sheathed it with .020 sheet styrene.  I am debating what I should do on the flat areas of this kit.  In a sense I'd like to leave it balsa, just to show it is possible to get a smooth finish on balsa wood.  But it would make painting a lot easier if I sheathed with plastic. To sheath or not to sheath?

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    August, 2014
  • From: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Posted by goldhammer on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 12:34 PM

Im doing a Guillow's F6F and sheathing in balsa as a shelf sitter.  Planning on using a wood sealer on it prior to paint.  But don't know how mant coats I'm going to need, probably two at any rate.

Lot more sanding invlolved in sealing over styrene, for me would depend on how many curved parts you have to fight with the card and wood.

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Tuesday, April 23, 2019 12:44 PM

Remember Shellac? I'd find some and use it, or if not something like spar varnish.

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 9:01 AM

I have sheathed Guillows kits with styrene, since Guillows kits often provide vacuform details for compound curve areas.  So I just use the styrene for the single curvature or flat areas.  Sheet styrene allows embossing rivet detail.

I have never had good luck with varnish nor shellac on balsa.  I am using a full-bodied sandable primer, but still may clad in styrene on the flat parts.  Much of this Packard body is made up of flat panels.

I find styrene easy to paint compared to balsa.  Balsa takes multiple coats of wood sealer, fewer coats of a sandable auto primer.

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    November, 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 2:29 PM

All I can say is Wow !

 

  • Member since
    November, 2008
  • From: Far Northern CA
Posted by mrmike on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 3:18 PM

Regarding GM's suggestion, Shellac is very useful in woodworking, acting as a barrier coat to prevent uneven absorbtion of stains or other finishes, with a couple caveats. First, use unwaxed shellac; Zinnser's Sealcoat is one that's commonly sold. Second, thin it with denatured alcohol about 50:50 so it strikes in as opposed to sitting on the surface. You'll still need filler, but much less.

Another, even easier technique for paint prep on open grained wood is to seal the surface with thinned white or PVA glue (Titebond or similar). This also helps to fill the pores.

I remember the wooden kits - great to be seeing one built!

  • Member since
    September, 2012
Posted by GMorrison on Wednesday, April 24, 2019 5:52 PM

I love wood kits. One line in particular was a set of wagon models. Wood, leather, brass parts. The wheels were cast plastic. I don't know the scale but it was something like 1/12.

There was a conestoga wagon, ore wagon, chuck wagon and stagecoach. Probably some others. I have found them on eBay but of course they are spendy.

Don, look forward to every step here.

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Saturday, April 27, 2019 10:20 AM

Got the body sheathed in plastic now.  The seat is coming along.  Rear axle finished, and front axle almost finished.  One of the front springs broke due to brittleness of aged cardboard, so will have to do a new one with styrene.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    June, 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Saturday, April 27, 2019 2:05 PM

Hi " G "

    Listen , we all have gone here .remember Hot " FuelProof Dope " ? They made a sanding sealer that was the Cat's Meow ! I still use it too . Harder to get, But It's available through a wood-Carving friend . T.B.

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Wednesday, May 01, 2019 3:52 PM

Got all the springs made!  The fourth rear spring is glued together and drying, three are shown here, with the two front springs.

Also shown is the chassis.  This car was really a good example of the American gas buggy.  The suspension was typical buggy style.  Note that the axles are rigidly fastened together in the chassis, the body was suspended from the chassis (lots of unsprung weight!).

Still working on sanding and filling the body.  Even after cladding there is a lot of shaping and puttying.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Thursday, May 09, 2019 9:17 AM

Have a few coats of paint on the body and seat frame now.  Also a coat on the springs.  Finished the lamps with Alclad Brass.

Also primed the wheels.  The light gray primer I am using makes a good match for pre-1910 tires, so I will just mask off the tires and paint the wheel.

 

 

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    November, 2018
Posted by oldermodelguy on Thursday, May 09, 2019 5:13 PM

Looking great Don !

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