Jaguar 1957 XK SS

Revell Jaguar 1957 XK SS by Dale Koppi

And you all thought I would be mad from planking my ship. Well, it turns out that to prevent this madness, I started on an entry for the Revel competition that we have coming up. And this is currently it, unless it all goes horribly wrong and ends up in the bin.

I purchased this kit from one of the many shows I was at this year, at £12 and I thought this might be bargain.

Out of the box this kit came and the pieces were flying off the sprue. There were 4 sprues, one pre-chromed, one clear one black and one red. The red plastic is very brittle, and I had to take care not to snap all edges. These were mostly the larger pieces of bodywork. The chrome sprue, now this is when the nightmare begins. Why oh why do they not remove the mould lines before they chrome it. The fact that when you remove the chrome pieces from the sprue, its black plastic underneath so you have to try touch them up.Then trying to touch up chrome is almost impossible as I found out.

I decided to follow the instructions to start with and paint then assemble. By using a combination of superglue and plastic glue, the majority of the engine and suspension went together without to many moments of regret.

The airbrush did a really nice job. But thanks to my handling, I started to rub it off the paint from the model in places. This wasn’t to bad untill I hit a wall….

This kit does not fit well. This was discovered when I had to put the front suspension, the engine, the drivetrain, the radiator and the front subframe together. I snapped the subframe and radiator about 3 times trying to get the engine and front suspension to fit. This process took alot of time, superglue and touching up of the paintwork. But in the end, it doesn’t look that bad.

The next nightmare was assembling the nose piece. The front lights came on the black plastic sprue and should have been chromed. What made it even better is that according to the instructions, they are supposed to be painted black. All my reference photo’s all clearly show that front lights are chromed inside to help reflect the light forwards. The fact that the 6 main peices didn’t actually fit in the slightest was niether here nor there at this point.

This is when I pretty much decided to start ignoring the instructions and build it how I thought. First on the list was the front grill, bye bye plastic piece and hello fine nylon mesh. This improved the look on the front end quite a bit. With this completed, I decided to start detailing the engine bay. 6 HT leads were made from black cotton and fed from the distrubuter to the spark plugs and two plastic clips were scrath built and fitted. Wow is was fiddly, I need to give Paul the master builder more credit when he does these as each wire took the best part of an hour. It didnt help that I had fitted the carbs which made access difficult. I should have used wire instead of cotton, but it is all part of the learning curve.

Anyway, this tiny detail actually brings alot to the model and I would recommend the effort.

Getting the two main pieces together was a challenge. The top and bottom halves of the car did not really fit unless you gave it some force, and the sound of plastic straining scares me. Last thing I wanted was it to snap into many pieces. I used around 10 pieces of masking tape to hold the two halves in place, while I quickly got the superglue out and fused the two together.

Next on the list was to paint the body the final colour. This required the engine, the wheels and the cabin to all be masked off. I used a combination of masking tape, paper and liquid mask.  This didnt take to long, but I can already see that I should have spent more time rubbing down the body to get it perfectly smooth.

The body was then glossed, the masking taken off and some general touch up performed on the bits I missed.

The next parts were the cabin and the chrome. The chrome went on without too much swearing. What then happened was not good, I started to break pieces off the model which took a long time to fix. The front lights were held in place with PVA while I tried to smooth out bare metal foil around them. Once this was done, the superglue came out the make sure nothing moved.

With the chrome parts flying onto the model, it started to look complete, that was until I snapped off the windscreen, the dashboard and the steering wheel. So another few hours was spent repairing the model again!!! Next on the list were the exhausts, and then a general tidy up, and hey presto. One completed Jag. I intend to put this on a grass base, with the hood up as it would be at an outdoor show.

Materials used during the build.

Tamiya fine surface primer – grey (I like this primer)
Tamiya acrylic paints.
Mr hobby – Mr Cement
Zap-A-Gap Medium CA+ (slow drying superglue)
Mister Sticky Low Viscosity Cyaniacrylate (this is super thin superglue I got from Fratton model shop)
Tamiya masking tape
Iwata CR Airbrush
Alclad 2 chrome
Humbrol gloss black spray
Bare metal foil – Ultra bright chrome

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