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Modifying an Oxford Diecast Van

Warren Kerfoot

WARREN KERFOOT shows us what you can do with Oxford Diecast Austin Van.

Following on the other road vehicles I slightly modified, here is another selection of quick eveningís simple projects I did the other night to the excellent Oxford Austin Seven vans. These ones involving some easy to use items from the range, each to create a model with a bit of difference.

I am aiming to give the vans the look of being checked over, loaded or just 'in action' during the dayís work. The bodies on these great little models are a pretty clever composite and lend themselves to butchery really well.

Oxford Diecast Austin Seven

Dismantle the vans, each in turn for the 'victim of the night' sessions. This is straightforward with a screwdriver. With the body sections detached, get your Gaugemaster Razor Saw and cut off the bits that are going to be posed. If you plan it well you hardly damage the factory finish, minimising collateral damage to paint. Often just a quick clean up with our files to deburr and itís ready for reassembly!

Oxford Diecast Austin Seven

Using Deluxe Materials cyano bond the doors, or bonnet etc where you want them to be. With the back doors open scenario, you do need to lose most of the original body mounting lugs etc. and make a new rear floor in plasticard. Rear glazing is done with Deluxe Materials Glue N Glaze. Refix the whole vehicle back together with Deluxe Max or Hot again.

Oxford Diecast Austin Seven

For the bonnet-open version make a rough over template of the bonnet using a piece of ex takeaway tin foil tray, then remove the front grille from the bonnet. Cut down the bulkhead from the scuttle panel, using your foil template as a rough distance guide to the cab bulkhead. At this stage design an engine. You can go as far as you want in this area, but for my model itís just the suggestion of one being in there was all thatís needed. To do this I needed to pose the bonnet open and then build some resemblance of the engine, detail isnít going to be an issue as itíll be obscured ultimately by our driver servicing it!

Oxford Diecast Austin Seven

During the blackout regulations meant that pretty crude white markings were painted over edges and arches. Iíve tried to replicate this on some and also kept variety into whatís been done.

Iíll deploy Preiser or Noch figures embroiled in some task around each of these ultimately so they look more in context than a vehicle closed up with the wheels pointing dead straight!

Total time from out of the box to 'something different' was about an hour on each. Of course thereís so much more to do if you wish - engine details, wipers, mirrors, loads, ladders, sheets, number plates, or convert one to town gas running, or a roof mounted ad board, convert it to a pick up or breakdown truck whereís my saw?!

Oxford Diecast Austin Seven

A nice simple project done quickly and easily to add a different dimension to the vehicles. The same principles can be applied lots of the superb Oxford vans and cars. There is of course some very serious and skilled modellers of road transport vehicles, if youíre interested take a look at the NARTM (National Association of Road Transport Modellers).

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