Model Kits

Tamiya and Italeri's 1:35 GMC truck kits make ideal bases for a conversion, and Masters Productions offer a resin set (MP35006) with all the parts you need to create the vehicle in miniature. It's a beautifully made product but unfortunately the compressor is cast with the side panels closed, so if you wish to display the powerplant you'll be in for some fairly serious scratch-building work.

Alternatively you can purchase a complete kit of the COE (cab over engine) version of the truck, also by Masters Productions, which features single rear axle. It's an unusual but interesting machien with plenty of diorama potential, and a reasonbly straightforward project. We will be featuring the conversion in a future issue of TMMI, so keep reading to see it come together. •


The instrument panel and controls for the compressor and Its engine were located inside the compressor housing. The driver's side panel was raised in order to provide access. Photo courtesy of Steve Keith.

This early compressor truck, notice the closed cab and lack of winch, was displayed with the host of tools with which these vehicles were typically equipped. The array of On Vehicle Material carried made these trucks

The Skil 2127, of which 10,359 were purchased, required 50-55 cfm of air to operate properly under most conditions. It could make cuts up to 4 3/8-inches deep. Photo courtesy of U.S. Army Engineer History Office.

Porsche always holds a fascination for petrolheads, so Tamiya's latest mega model is particularly appealing...

Porsche's Carrera GT set new standards in the world of supercars when it was unveiled, and a few years after the launch it still deserves its place in the top five greatest cars of all time, or at least in our opinion it does! In Tamiya's catalogue you'll now find the Ferrari F50 and Enzo Ferrari in the 1:12 Collectors' Club Special section, and now joining it comes the Carrera GT.

The model is another Tamiya tour de force - only the Big T would create a model in this way, with such fabulous attention to detail. It's hard to know where to begin - so the logical place is with the packaging. A gloss black card sleeve carrying six beautifully photographed images of a real Carrera GT covers the main box, and this takes the form of a large, strong case, coated in matt aluminium and black coloured film creating a sophisticated feel, rather like a giant box of expensive Belgian chocolates. A very good start then.

The lid is hinged at the rear and opens smoothly with a slight resistance created by the gentle vaccum of the opening action, and restrained at the vertical position by two black ribbons. The lid's inner face carries a crisp digital cutaway diagram of the Carrera GT's engine with a list of the car's specifications printed below it, a nice initial fix of techno-jargon for petrol heads.

Nestled within a grey, velvet textured tray in the main box is the model

- it comes in a partially dissassembled state, with the main part of the car plus wheels/tyres, rear body section, rollover hoop, roof panels, luggage, screwdriver and nameplate all siting in their own moulded niche. On each side of the tray are two loops of black ribbon to enable it to be lifted from the main box. The loops are not centrally located, and when you lift the tray from the box you realise why

- the weight of the model situated in the front of the tray balances the rest of the components perfectly, another smile-inducing detail touch, so typical of Tamiya. Under the tray you will find a sheet of instructions for the simple assembly of the model, plus a colour brochure offering a more in depth explanation of assembly and a background to the Carrera GT with some more photographs. O


After unscrewing the restraining plate holding the chassis in the tray, the model can be lifted gently from the box, revealing the amazing miniature replicas of the ceramic brakes and their bright yellow callipers. The correct matt finish is well replicated here, and the first task is to fit the wheels. I have slight reservations about the size of these - the photographs of the real car show these as immense rims, with ultra low profile tyres, but on the model they look a little smaller with chunkier rubber, however the overall effect is very realistic.

Each wheel is retained with a small nut, fitted with the chrome finished box spanner. To cover the non-scale nut a detailed centrelock cap is fitted, red on the left and blue on the right, each held in place with a concealed magnet.

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