VW Track Maintenance Van
Not a scratch built model but the body of this VW White/Blue Camper Van was modified into a Track Maintenance vehicle enough so to warrant sharing in the forum. The original Scaley VW Van was previously modified to enhance performance by replacing the tires, wheels, axles, motor, pinion and braid. I used a BWA 9 tooth pinion on a BWMS050 motor with the original crown gear fixed to a new rear axle spinning through bearings. Wheels front and back were BW13-200-093-375 with 375LOT4WOB inserts capped with DART half moons. RM0201 tires finished the look. 7 grams of weight were added to the front of the plastic chassis and body float created for better handling.
But the white/royal blue camper was of no use, so it sat on the shelf until now. This past Saturday we ran the IPS proxy and later that afternoon I decided to get off couch and complete this project. If you watched the Blue Jay game Saturday afternoon then you had enough time to do what I did below to turn this pleasure camper into a daily track workhorse.
I removed the body from the chassis and disassembled the entire body and its components. The front and rear bumpers are separate pieces so they came off when the body was removed.
Using dishwashing liquid I washed the pieces that were going to get sprayed: front and rear bumpers, main body, roof, split window front windscreen area and rear windows. I wanted to use Tamiya liquid surface grey primer mixed with a little Tamiya metallic blue (X-13) and diluted with paint thinner for the air brush. This gives the otherwise grey primer a light blue tint with a very faint metallic fleck – a theme to be carried over to other track vehicles in the future. I also wanted to glaze all of the rear windows using Tamiya TS-80, a flat clear spray on both the inside and outside of the windows to keep away any shine and make them almost opaque. After airbrushing the bumpers and entire body pieces everything dried for a half hour or so. I brushed on Tamiya XF-53, neutral grey, on the front and rear seats but left the dashboard, doors and floor the same colour as the body. The dashboard, steering wheel and ‘stiff’ driver were left as is since I didn’t want to make this a whole day project.
While the body pieces were drying I soldered together a working trailer hitch which I fixed to the rear of the plastic chassis. This was just buffed and not painted. I plan to make several trailers including a victory podium trailer… stay tuned for them… but that’s for a NASCAR afternoon…
I also hand painted the front split window edging with the same colour and then highlighted the window detail with some silver paint. This part was a pain in the ass and took nearly an inning. I also highlighted hinges and door handles with the same silver paint (the pictures do not capture this adequately). Since these areas are so fine if you do get some paint bleeding onto the window portion you can simply take a toothpick and rub away the paint using the pointed end of the toothpick after the paint has dried… this trick doesn’t work on any painted surface though.
After the paint was dry I made two pylon holders for each of the rear quarters of the body using .032 wire. These I didn’t paint and simply drilled mounting holes and glued them into place. DArt Urethane Pylons were pushed onto these wires to complete each side.
I then soldered together a small roof fence using .032 wire and buffed it. Again, I wasn’t going to paint this either. This took another inning. I drilled oversized holes for the six posts.
Finally it was time to reassemble and glue everything else together. Loose tires were added to the roof tray but not glued in place. The tray is also large enough to accommodate three straw bales…
I contemplated adding graphics or lettering in white to the body but in the end opted not to, a choice I am glad I stuck with. I can always do so later on if I change my mind. I also have yet to add a rack with shovels and brooms to this van but there’s always tomorrow…