Jump to content

Minix (and other) car improvements


quicksilvercoaches
 Share

Recommended Posts

With recent talk of Minix models I felt it was opportune to show some of my own efforts to bring some of these up to modern standards, albeit nowhere near the scale of 'CHARD's incredible undertaking. I still think the body mouldings are superb but were really let down by the terrible wheels, particularly on the later ones with black wheels and bases, but the availability of cheap diecasts makes it easy to sort that out

 

The Anglia and 1100 were the first two I acquired about 15 years ago as painted shells with no glazing or wheels. These both have parts from Cararama Minis, back when they were commonplace. They're showing their age a bit now.

post-16790-0-15150300-1515777530_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-37481600-1515777531_thumb.jpg

 

My next attempt was a Triumph 2000 into a Mark 1 2.5 PI using bits from the Oxford Mark 2. Painted Ford Purple Velvet so not authentic but I like it.

post-16790-0-02270700-1515777980_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-29851200-1515777981_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-58435800-1515777980_thumb.jpg

 

This Victor is my favourite. Transformed from one of the horrible black-wheeled models with Oxford FB Victor wheels.

post-16790-0-90331700-1515777533_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-21676900-1515777533_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-46371000-1515777532_thumb.jpg

 

LHD Simca. An unusual choice for a UK company. Again this has Cararama Mini wheels.

post-16790-0-59246100-1515777534_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-22337300-1515777535_thumb.jpg

 

Landcrab. This still has the original wheels but spaced out to the correct width and painted.

post-16790-0-11715900-1515777818_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-62428400-1515777818_thumb.jpg

 

Corsair with Cortina wheels and interior. I slipped up here as it's supposed to be a 2000E but I realised too late that version doesn't have the chrome side strip (odd that the posh one has less chrome than lesser models).

post-16790-0-23025600-1515777879_thumb.jpg

 

My most ambitious conversion so far. I used to own a Triumph Dolomite and always wanted a model of it, then one day I was looking at a Minix Triumph 2000 and realised with a bit of chopping and changing I might be able to make a passable Dolomite.

post-16790-0-17619300-1515777666_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-77669300-1515777666_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-21967900-1515777667_thumb.jpg

 

As the current owner of an Austin Maxi, for my next trick I intend to try converting a Landcrab into a Maxi using the front end of a Mark 2 Cortina.

  • Like 15
Link to post
Share on other sites

Good stuff! 

 

Bearing in mind that my endeavour is - quite literally - on an industrial scale, I'm reasonably pleased that I don't have to worry about things like registration plates.

 

In addition, as mine will only ever be viewed as wagon loads, parked within a few mm of each other and seen in motion from normal distances, I'm only planning some very basic acknowledgement of things like indicator and brake lights - probably sticking to a single darkish red. 

 

I intend to generally darken interiors - whether they are detailed or not, to subdue the vehicles' appearance. 

 

Wheels are a bit of a concern, but I'm hoping that sorting out the transverse spacing from the wheel-arches should help, even if I stick with the basic silvered centres to represent hubcaps, that were ubiquitous on private saloons in 1966-68.. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

Black chassis Victors are rare; At an exhibition in Kent I was told by someone who said they'd worked for Hornby, that when it was obvious the Triumph 2000 tool wouldn't last much longer (this would have been the early 1980s) the factory re-ran the other tools to see which would be the best short-term replacement while the Ford Sierra (a terrible model who's only redeeming feature was that it screwed together) was tooled up. In the end they chose the Sunbeam Alpine (Hattons still have them at £1 each).

Anyway, here's just a few I've detailed/repainted/mucked about with:

 

wNfIx4G.jpg

 

Ironically a Triumph Mk.I converted to a Mk.II, but I did do it over 30 years ago, long before the Oxford model was even dreamed of. Might finish it one day...

Edited by BernardTPM
  • Like 9
Link to post
Share on other sites

Liking the look of those Bernard. Pity I didn't know about the rarity of the black-chassis Victor, it came in a job lot and the wheels looked so awful I felt I had to do something about them. I have a couple of green chrome-chassis versions too. The only Minix cars I'm missing are the Hillman Imp (not too bothered about this as I have the Oxford version) and the rare two, the Cresta estate and Rambler Classic. 

 

As the Hornby Sierra was mentioned, here are my efforts to make them actually look like Sierras. It took a lot of work to produce something even half-decent from this utterly terrible attempt (I won't even call it a model).

 

post-16790-0-61650100-1515782313_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-76019300-1515782351_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-28507800-1515782352_thumb.jpg

 

The blue one is supposed to be a late high-spec version and has wheels from the Oxford Cosworth. Note the grey grille on the red one: this is prototypical but very rare as it was used only on the base model for the first nine months of production. This is a replica of the only known survivor, which is something of a legend among the car-spotting community. Wheels are from a Mk1 Fiesta and not quite right but as close as I can get.

 

post-16790-0-87948900-1515782478_thumb.jpg

  • Like 6
Link to post
Share on other sites

Good stuff! 

 

Bearing in mind that my endeavour is - quite literally - on an industrial scale, I'm reasonably pleased that I don't have to worry about things like registration plates.

 

In addition, as mine will only ever be viewed as wagon loads, parked within a few mm of each other and seen in motion from normal distances, I'm only planning some very basic acknowledgement of things like indicator and brake lights - probably sticking to a single darkish red. 

 

I intend to generally darken interiors - whether they are detailed or not, to subdue the vehicles' appearance. 

 

Wheels are a bit of a concern, but I'm hoping that sorting out the transverse spacing from the wheel-arches should help, even if I stick with the basic silvered centres to represent hubcaps, that were ubiquitous on private saloons in 1966-68.. 

 

Some very nice work there. On the Corsair chrome side trim, the 2000E came along with the revamp of the model in 1967 and I believe this also deleted the chrome side trim from all other models so not a case of it being there on lesser models but not on the range topper.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Some very nice work there. On the Corsair chrome side trim, the 2000E came along with the revamp of the model in 1967 and I believe this also deleted the chrome side trim from all other models so not a case of it being there on lesser models but not on the range topper.

I'm not sure that's true. All the photos I can find of non-2000E Corsairs, including those registered post-1967 on G and H plates, show the chrome trim so it looks like it was only deleted from the 2000E.

 

The new crop of Oxford Diecast cars haven't escaped the hacksaw either. First a trio of convertibles: Crayford Cortina and Viva, and a Radford Volvo P1800.

post-16790-0-16613600-1515784379_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-11756800-1515784408_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-92498900-1515784420_thumb.jpg

 

And something you might think is a flight of fancy but does actually exist. Two prototype SD1 estates were built (one is at Gaydon and the other in the Haynes Motor Museum), but there is a home-built replica out there using the back end of a Volvo 245 so that's what I did in miniature to create a 'Rovolvo SD245'.

post-16790-0-81369700-1515784504_thumb.jpg

 

post-16790-0-68863300-1515784505_thumb.jpg

  • Like 10
Link to post
Share on other sites

Some nice conversions there, Quicksilver. I started doing a Viva convertible from one of my own kits many years ago - still not finished!

 

XEiSoLw.jpg

 

There's a wider than normal panel between the passenger compartment and boot I need to do, visible in this photo. Making the Cortina a Crayford at least solves the problem of that awful rear quarter panel on the Oxford model. Some good work on the Sierras too, though one of the major problems is that the whole window line is wrong. It's very hard to address that as it requires a lot of hacking, filing and filling.

Edited by BernardTPM
  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • RMweb Premium

...... The only Minix cars I'm missing are the Hillman Imp (not too bothered about this as I have the Oxford version) ....

 

Here's what I did some time ago to an unsuspecting Minix Imp.

 

post-6793-0-45796700-1515785276_thumb.jpg

  • Like 11
Link to post
Share on other sites

The MINIX Imp is nice; I've got several for doing up/modifying.

Here's the Hornby Sierra, still a work/mess in progress:

 

post-1877-0-70001300-1515789366_thumb.jpg

 

The realy hard bit is getting that reverse fold at the waist right; I'm still not sure I'm there. I replaced the entire lower bodyside too so now it's part of the body rather than the floor.

Lima's two 4mm offerings scrub up OK:

 

post-1877-0-08435700-1515789492_thumb.jpg

 

I've also got 4mm scale models of four of the five generations of Vauxhall Victor, shown in this older thread. I am still contemplating completing the set by doing the FE.

Edited by BernardTPM
  • Like 10
Link to post
Share on other sites

As the current owner of an Austin Maxi, for my next trick I intend to try converting a Landcrab into a Maxi using the front end of a Mark 2 Cortina.

The Maxi is 3" (1mm) narrower than the 1800 so going that route it would probably be best to narrow the 1800 body to match the Cortina bonnet. Mind, while there is some superfiicial resemblance, I don't think the two (Cortina) (Maxi) are that close in bonnet shape (ignore the grilles).

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • RMweb Premium

I've fitted the Base Toys Cortina Mk. I body to the Oxford Mk. I flooorpan. The modifications required to the Oxford floorpan is a bit of trimming at the rear sides and a reduction in the turrets around the screw fixings. I also used the Oxford interior. The B-T casting is far better as long as you can find one that has been cast properly without the rear half of the boot higher than the front.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Maxi is 3" (1mm) narrower than the 1800 so going that route it would probably be best to narrow the 1800 body to match the Cortina bonnet. Mind, while there is some superfiicial resemblance, I don't think the two (Cortina) (Maxi) are that close in bonnet shape (ignore the grilles).

They look similar enough to me, bearing in mind the Oxford Cortina isn't especially accurate. Not sure I'll bother with the narrowing for the sake of 1mm as the 1800 body looks the same width as the Cortina. The frontal resemblance between the two is not coincidental: when Roy Haynes joined BMC one of his first jobs was to improve on the ugly snub nose of Issigonis's Maxi design, which he seems to have done by reusing the work he did for Ford on the Cortina.

 

I have one of those Lima Capris too but would love to get my hands on the Fiat 131. Never seen one anywhere though. 

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, I'm aware of the Haynes connection and sadly you're right about the Oxford Mk.II 'tina. What I meant was narrow the 1800 parts to match the ODC bonnet if it turns out that it's narrower; I've seen another 'Maxi' on a layout some years back that used the 1800 at full width and it really didn't look right (a bit like the Fatleks).

The Lima 131s could be picked up dirt cheap in the '80s but, unlike the Capris, they've just disappeared now. A shame I lost most of my stash.

Edited by BernardTPM
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • RMweb Premium

They look similar enough to me, bearing in mind the Oxford Cortina isn't especially accurate. Not sure I'll bother with the narrowing for the sake of 1mm as the 1800 body looks the same width as the Cortina. The frontal resemblance between the two is not coincidental: when Roy Haynes joined BMC one of his first jobs was to improve on the ugly snub nose of Issigonis's Maxi design, which he seems to have done by reusing the work he did for Ford on the Cortina.

 

I have one of those Lima Capris too but would love to get my hands on the Fiat 131. Never seen one anywhere though. 

I would like to get my hands on one of those FIAT 131's. Also the Spanish company Eko who produced HO plastic road vehicles for some reason made their Jeep station wagon in very near to 00 scale. Someone has upgraded one of these models using Oxford Land Rover wheels. He also converted a second to a pick up truck and used the spare body to produce a passable representation of one of the Land Rover 80 inch prototype estates by shortening it and fitting it to the Oxford 80 inch LR.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Not yet... sorry. (front) (rear)

 

Thanks Bernard - I vaguely remember that thread, and then it faded out. The Maestro appeared briefly on Shapeways, and I obtained one, but the glazing of it is beyond me. I had a real Maestro Automatic in the late 1980's, one of the best cars I have ever had.

 

I do so hope you, or somebody, can get a Maxi out in 00 sometime soon, as it was my car in the early 1980's and I need to have it on my layout!!

Link to post
Share on other sites

I would like to compliment everyone who has posted pics of models here: there are some excellent models and modelling demonstrated. :)

I have done a few myself, with a few more languishing on the workbench.

Bernard Taylor used to offer a few detailing bits that assisted, such as white metal wheels of various sizes and patterns. I don't know if he can still offer these - over to you, Bernard, on that question.

I haven't had the patience to flush-glaze any of the Minix models, although one or two have new, flush windscreens fitted. The next best thing is to paint all the insides of the window surrounds in black to disguise the thickness of the plastic mouldings. While doing that, the insides of the wheel arches also benefit from the same treatment. Extending the axles to widen the track measurements makes the wheels sit at more realistic positions in the wheel arches, and even bending a few front axles to pose the wheels in slightly turned positions also add to the poseability and realism of the models. Finally, with the 'chrome' finish on the earlier, better models, flooding some well thinned black paint into the grilles highlights the detail there.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

post-26971-0-78378800-1517171094_thumb.jpgpost-26971-0-09034500-1517171143_thumb.jpgpost-26971-0-42402400-1517171191_thumb.jpg

I would like to get my hands on one of those FIAT 131's. Also the Spanish company Eko who produced HO plastic road vehicles for some reason made their Jeep station wagon in very near to 00 scale. Someone has upgraded one of these models using Oxford Land Rover wheels. He also converted a second to a pick up truck and used the spare body to produce a passable representation of one of the Land Rover 80 inch prototype estates by shortening it and fitting it to the Oxford 80 inch LR.

...and here are those conversions. the Eko Jeep wagon is correct for 1/76 scale, and is now available again (as is much of the old range) under the ToyEko brand. I have now got another example which will one day become a Jeepster convertible. The blue stationwagon has a new front bumper, an interior and Langley FX4 taxi wheels, and depicts a 1953 2-wheel drive deluxe version. The 4-wheel drive pickup had its chassis extended to a scale 118", with a scratchbuilt pickup bed and wheels from a JB Models Land Rover, and was modelled on one I photographed at the Stars and stripes American car show at Tatton Park two years ago. The redundant rear of the Stationwagon was then grafted on to an Oxford Series 1 Land Rover to replicate the Tickford-bodied example on display at Gaydon. The remains of the JB Land Rover might one day be resurrected as an Austin Gypsy, unless Oxford beat me to it.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • RMweb Premium

attachicon.gifja.JPGattachicon.gifjb.JPGattachicon.gifjc.JPG

...and here are those conversions. the Eko Jeep wagon is correct for 1/76 scale, and is now available again (as is much of the old range) under the ToyEko brand. I have now got another example which will one day become a Jeepster convertible. The blue stationwagon has a new front bumper, an interior and Langley FX4 taxi wheels, and depicts a 1953 2-wheel drive deluxe version. The 4-wheel drive pickup had its chassis extended to a scale 118", with a scratchbuilt pickup bed and wheels from a JB Models Land Rover, and was modelled on one I photographed at the Stars and stripes American car show at Tatton Park two years ago. The redundant rear of the Stationwagon was then grafted on to an Oxford Series 1 Land Rover to replicate the Tickford-bodied example on display at Gaydon. The remains of the JB Land Rover might one day be resurrected as an Austin Gypsy, unless Oxford beat me to it.

Thanks for that, I've checked on E-bay and there is a stockist for ToyEko in France but a bit pricy at £9.20 each.

Link to post
Share on other sites

  • RMweb Premium

Nearly forgot, the road/rail wheels as fitted to the Oxford Rail Defenders were invented in America c. 1953. One of the first vehicles to be so equipped was a Jeep Station Wagon.

Edited by PhilJ W
Link to post
Share on other sites

I remember seeing these HO scale powered road/rail Jeeps in the Walthers catalogue some years ago, can't remember the manufacturer, or whether they used the Anguplas/Eko body. Following my acquisition of the stationwagons, I was hopeful that Eko's Jeep FC150 might also be to 1/76 scale. Sadly, it isn't.

  • Friendly/supportive 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

  • RMweb Premium

I remember seeing these HO scale powered road/rail Jeeps in the Walthers catalogue some years ago, can't remember the manufacturer, or whether they used the Anguplas/Eko body. Following my acquisition of the stationwagons, I was hopeful that Eko's Jeep FC150 might also be to 1/76 scale. Sadly, it isn't.

It was manufactured by Bachmann but doesn't use the Eko body as its definitely HO scale.

Link to post
Share on other sites

  • 4 months later...

This is my mild upgrade of the stuff of legend that is the Minix Vauxhall Cresta PB Friary estate.

 

Replaced the wheels with those from the Oxford Humber Super Snipe as their track and diameter are almost identical.

 

Painted the chrome below the front and rear bumpers a darker version of body colour to tone down and bring closer to the prototype.

 

I haven’t touched the front indicators as they’re colourless on the photos of real ones online, which surprised me as I expected to need to do them orange.

 

I touched in the rear lights red. Didn’t do the chrome surround in case I ruined it! The ones online showed the indicators on the inner face of the light clusters - looks wrong so I’ve left it all red.

 

The seats and glazing are welded fast with glueto the body so the interior and body will not receive any painting.

 

I will add number plates at some point.

 

Gap between the base and body is because I haven’t glued them back together and didn’t push it on fully for the picture.

 

Not as in depth or drastic as my usual upgrades but there aren’t the huge backups like with the ubiquitous Anglia etc!

post-34390-0-49530100-1529690192_thumb.jpeg

post-34390-0-64888100-1529690206_thumb.jpeg

Edited by ianmacc
  • Like 7
Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...