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    1. Kit: , by (Yearly Subscriber) Roger Zimmermann is offline
      Builder Last Online: Oct 2019 Show Printable Version Email this Page
      Model Scale: 1/12 Rating:  Thanks: 2
      Started: 02-25-19 Build Revisions: Never  
      Supported Scratch Built

      People here know that I was doing for a long time a Continental Mark II; most may not know that prior to that model, I have also a 1963 Studebaker Avanti and a 1966 Oldsmobile Toronado, both also at the scale 1:12.
      If the Avanti is a pure static model, the Toronado has an electric motor, centrifugal clutch and a 2-speed transmission plus reverse. Window, seat and headlamp doors are electrically operated, but that's far from reliable as you will discover the next few days.
      The goal was to finish the model, but, like every old thing you are dealing with, surprises arrise, usually to our dismay. It will be the same here.


      Now that the Mark II is ready, I have to really finish the Toronado. Why did I not finish it many years ago? Probably because I was very busy with my real cars; anyway, the fact is that the electrical system was not completed and the seat was no more functioning.

      In the seventies or eighties, a neighbors did for me a voltage reducer: the electrical motor for the traction is fed with 6V, but the motors for windows, seat and headlamps are fed with 2V. I had no idea if this device would still function, I never tried it.

      During the break in January, I did a case for four 1.5V batteries, (it could be that I did not completed the model because I had no 6V source) similar to the box I did for the Mark II.

      The first thing I did was to hook that voltage reducer and try if the windows would work. Nothing! However, the inside illumination was on, so I knew that the voltage reducer was active.

      As I had nothing to lose, I tried with the 3V box from the Mark II. The LH window came up, but with a high pitch noise! The RH window came up and down without noise, but very slowly. The quarter windows were OK too, but much slower than I had in memory. The seat would not move and the headlamps would not come up.

      The first work was to open the LH door and remove the motor.



      In retrospect, I did a very good job as everything is attached with screws. Once the motor was out, I separated the motor from the reduction gear and let it run with 1.5V. I had then the confirmation that the vibration came from the motor and not from the reduction!



      I put some oil at the output shaft, without difference. The back is closed; I tried anyway to put a drop of oil on it. I assume that the capillarity from the construction let some oil come at the right place as with the time, the motor went to a quiet mode.



      It’s now back in place, without noise. With 1.5V, it barely goes up and down when connecting the battery directly to the motor. Therefore, I tried again with 3V; it goes somewhat quicker, but you can almost get asleep in between. That’s a design flaw: to improve the situation, I should use the same motors as the ones from the Mark II; this would require heavy modifications at the doors because the transmission (or reduction gear) is square.

      To understand what was happening and continue the electrical work, I had to remove the rear seat. I discovered the electrical mess under it; if I have the schematic of the system, I don’t have identified the wires with the proper color, so I’m lost. There will be some detective work to find out.



      As some elements covered with leather were out, I cleaned them with a leather product. Despite the age (about 40 years old), they are in good shape; I must add that the mileage is maybe 10 yards!




      Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
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  1. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Quote Originally Posted by happyfreddy View Post

    Roger, besides Your excellent descriptions in Toronado and Mark II thread about forming the body, did You ever
    tried make it by pressing brass/copper chassis sheets with positiv and negative forms like done with the wheel cover ?
    Well, Freddy, I did some pressing with the Mark II: the horizontal line going from the front fender to the taillamps was done that way. To shape copper or brass is requiring a very precise die set. As I wrote once to Don, major body parts are done in several operations, requiring each time a different die set. Imagine the tooling for just one model! At this scale, the tooling must be resistant to the pressure; I'm not sure if a resin Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12 set can handle that without breaking in thousand pieces. You noticed that the wheelcovers for the Mark II were done in 2 pieces; with a press, exact tooling and the material suitable for that, a one piece tooling set could be used. That OK for x thousand pieces but not for 5 or 6!
    Don't get me wrong: this is my theory; maybe somebody will show me that it could be done!
    Anyway, thank you for the various videos; they are very interesting. I was all the time thinking that clay was a relative hard material, but it seems that it's not.


    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #32

  2. MODEL A MODEL's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Hello, the clay is available in several hardness's, and is made soft by heating it.

    Once it has cooled some of them become quite “hard” but remain carvable. Able to hold sharp edges.

    I have not but a very basic knowledge of styling clay, it is fascinating stuff, and infinitely shapeable.

    It is not the artist nor the potters clay. It is oil based, feels waxy, and some smell of sulfur. Reusable as long as it is kept clean. It can be over-heated, and that will ruin the clay.
    Last edited by MODEL A MODEL; 03-03-19 at 06:25 PM.
    QUOTE QUOTE #33

  3. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Probably I’m not alone to act that way: when I see difficulties or don’t know how to perform a task, I’m finding a lot of other things to do: answer emails, polish the paint, improving something which could be done later, and so on. But once, it’s over with distractions. The string replacement at the quarter window was delayed and delayed until I had to grasp the task because only when it’s done can I go further with the model.
    It was like I feared: not easy. I had some habit to work with that new material at the RH front door; finally, I had the courage to begin the quarter window. On paper, it’s easy: a string, do a loop with that, install the window guide and the motor. Maximum 7 screws and no space!
    As you can see from the pictures, the drum at the motor cannot be seen when it’s in place. The string must be rolled on the drums before the installation and, if both strings are not under tension, they unroll themselves!
    I had a first half success: when assembled, I saw that one string is not in its guide (a déjà vu situation!). I removed that guide support, the one which took about an afternoon to install the first time. I took it out to make a wider and deeper guide and I imagined a simple tool to help at the installation. My idea was correct; the guide was in after 20 minutes. Then one electric wire at the motor broke because I used it to manipulate the motor. I could partially take the motor out and solder the wire.
    The attached pictures are showing how the window is moving; the system was pictured in the 1966 Fisher body manual and I adapted it.
    I’m still unsure what to do with the LH quarter window. I will remove the upper trim and if I don’t see any damage at the old wire, I let it that way. I will however rode the string at the LH front door.








    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #34

  4. markus68's Avatar VIP/Sponsor
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    Very interesting mechanism. Great.
    QUOTE QUOTE #35

  5. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Thanks Markus! Fortunately, the original system was more reliable than mine!


    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #36

  6. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    The string at the LH door was replaced; I modify also the tensioner similar to the RH side.
    The lower door’s molding was removed as I intend to sand Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12 and buff the paint under the character line; this lower part still has a strong orange skin.



    As for the RH door, the hinge's pins have too much play; I will do new ones.


    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #37

  7. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    The trim was assembled on the LH door and the assembly was installed on the body, with the harness pushed into the A pillar. I began to solder the cut wires to have a functional door master switch. When I connected the positive and negative wires, I tried the LH window. It went up and down with some hiccup. Obviously, the thick wiring coming out of the door is touching the window front guide. I will have to add a protection here. There will be two more screws into the door shell!




    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #38

  8. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Today, I will relate the birth of that model. Some elements were already done as early as autumn 1967, like the engine and other small parts. My goal was to have a model as accurate as the real one, which means many elements would be assembled with screws. Therefore, the front fenders would be bolted on; a firewall had to be done accurately to allow that specific operation.
    To spare on weight, I imagined doing a core with wood in two parts: once the main body was carved and the negative molds done, the idea was to remove the front end to do the firewall at the right position. The first picture from February 1968 (yes, this picture is 51 years old!) is showing the wood core.



    As you can see, those pictures are small and are scanned from some B/W pictures; some will be colored ones but the colors are faded because of the age.
    There is some plaster on the wood at this picture. Of course, I bought the cheapest plaster, the one for remodeling a room, which was not especially clever as this kind of plaster is too brittle.



    The next picture is showing the overall shape of the body; it was in April 1968.



    After the negative molds ware done for the doors, I carved some plaster away to shape the B pillars.



    The next picture from Spring 1969 is showing the carving for the hood reinforcement.



    When the mold for that part was done, the buck was cut to and the front end removed.



    The negative mold for the rear of the body was done in July 1969.



    Some more carving is done at the firewall.



    Finally, all positive parts are sown on the last picture. Some rework is still needed!




    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #39

  9. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    With all body parts ready, the next step was logically to assemble them. At that time, I could take an incredible quantity of dimensions from a real car which was in the same town. I just had a bicycle; not very convenient to carry all I needed.
    The first picture from that batch, dated Sept. 26, 1969, is showing the assembled body with the plaster one in the back.



    That plaster unit was still in use: I carved the roof structure.



    The next step was to do the floor. A difficult task, accomplished probably mainly with the help of pictures and the Jo-Han scale model seen on a previous picture. The basic material is again plaster.



    The main problem, by working with polyester and fiberglass, is to separate the finished part when the polyester is cured. It this picture from spring 1970, it’s obvious that the separation did not go well.



    The floor is not yet glued to the body; it’s just temporary in place.



    I assume that when I took this picture in 1971 or 1972, I have got the blueprints from Oldsmobile. Most crossbars from the floor were done with brass as I had their exact shape and dimension.



    During summer 1973, the floor was definitively attached to the body. Inside rocker panels were done in brass too.



    The last picture from October 1973 is showing the body; some internal structure has been added to it. I had also the blueprints for the frame; I assume that I did it in parallel to the body.




    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #40

  10. markus68's Avatar VIP/Sponsor
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    Very interesting. Thanks for showing.
    QUOTE QUOTE #41

  11. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    You are welcome Markus! Sorry for the quality of the pictures...


    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #42

  12. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    At the end of year 1975, I bought a reflex camera, analog of course. There was a dramatic improvement for the pictures, even if the scans do not do justice to the change.
    During October 1974 and the end of year 1975, many improvements were done at the body. Unfortunately, I did no picture during that time. The doors were attached to the body with their hinges, the firewall was finished and it seems that the underbody was ready too.





    During February 1975, I began to attach the front fenders to the body with the help of a temporary bracket at the frame’s front end



    October 1975: the body is rather complete; the front end was done in brass as well as the inner side panels from the front fenders. The last picture from the body is showing the hood open, maintained by the hinge’s springs.







    The frame was done some years ago, but it was incomplete: the front suspension was not yet done. They were not part from the frame’s blueprints; therefore, I probably had to look at a real car for the dimensions.





    The last picture from this retrospect is showing the engine on the frame; the front torsion bars are not yet done because I waited to have the weight from the model to do them.



    I will continue now with the “normal” report.
    I did a protection for the wiring; with a brass 0.4mm thick is certainly overkill, but my 02 and 03mm are gone!



    I still have doubts about the reliability from the window system; something which is working all the time with ease: the door locks. Their design is much better than the one from the Mark II and it was also easier to do them.




    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #43

  13. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Once the LH door was ready, I put it on the car and began to solder the previously separated wires. A test was done when each pair of wires was soldered. It was a good move: for an unknown reason, some buttons let the window down when up was desired. At the end, they all work the way they should; I’m wondering what for a gremlin I introduced!

    The wires were next covered with the cover filler and the kick panel was installed.





    The next problem came when I wanted to install the light switch to the dash frame: the wiring coming from the front end has an insufficient slack to allow pulling the switch towards the back. The sole possibility was to remove the front end panel, motor and end travel switch. Before I’m installing the whole parts, I will test if the electrical circuit is still OK.






    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #44

  14. Roger Zimmermann's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Fortunately, I found the wiring diagram I did in 1980 for the motor actuating the headlamp/ headlamps and tail lamps. I intended at that time to let run the motor for the headlamps with 2V and the lamps (in serie) with 6V! Why do simple when you can do complicated?
    Indeed, I will do 2 separate circuits: one for the engine with 6V with its distinct connector at the fuel tank (like I did for the Mark II) and a connector hidden into the trunk for 3V. This will power everything except the traction motor. Of course, I have now to modify the way each separate bulb is fed; they will all get 1.5V; therefore there will always be a group of 2 fed in serie: 3 groups in the trunk for the tail lamps, 1 group each for the headlamps and one group for the parking lamps.
    There is a reason why I’m separating completely the circuits for the traction motor and the other electrical devices: if all would be connected with 6V with the corresponding voltage reducer for the window motors, the traction motor would be absorbing current without turning. To let it run, I have to “give gas” by pushing the accelerator Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12 ; then, when the accelerator Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12 pedal is released, the engine is idling (but it does not start in this position) and I could demonstrate that the windows are going up and down (maybe!). However this situation does not please me.


    Finishing my 66 Olds Toronado, scale 1:12
    QUOTE QUOTE #45

  15. MODEL A MODEL's Avatar Yearly Subscriber
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    Hello Roger,

    I have been very busy at my "day" job, I have worked every day for the last twenty-four days, and yesterday was brutal. But I have seen your postings, and I am going to set aside, probably the whole night, tonight, to relax and read everything!

    A long while ago I had asked if you had considered making a second chassis, or sub-assemblies for your Marl II, to show next to or as an aside to your finished model. -my thinking was to better show the depth of detail and craftsmanship that your work has.

    I know that you had not planned for that, and it is doubling the work, but using your Toronado as an example, I too had thought to model this car, and had started long ago to measure, and collect literature, it was a still-born effort, however, it gave me a better appreciation of the work, the pains that you did go through to create what you had done! The original pictures of your finished model, though obviously done to your high standards, did not capture my attention.

    "Oh, its just another of one of Roger's excellent models" <----- this is what I was probably thinking.

    But now! I am totally absorbed.

    I have worked in plaster, and clay, and . . . but in organic shapes, (sculpture classes), I have done some fiber-glass work, and I am "handy" around wood.
    Seeing your new postings of "older" work is for me, very exciting!

    I hope to increase my own productivity this year, and of course will welcome your reviews.

    Thank you for posting these, earlier steps.

    I have said it before, I am not so much a "car-guy" or a "plane, or ship-guy" -I am really, a "model-guy" model making of all sorts! I enjoy learning new processes, techniques and materials.

    Thank you for all that you show us and share with us!

    -Don
    -craftsmanship is a lifelong project of
    self-construction and self determination
    QUOTE QUOTE #46

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