Recently I required this Thornycraft Mighty Antar minus its trailer on eBay with some other well loved to death Matchbox's. So my inspirations got the better of me and I decided to turn the Antar into something else. I had some spare bits and pieces and selected the Dodge Crane No 63 C1 for its tray that was minus its window and the front chassis plate had disappeared somewhere. While checking with the vernier callipers gauge and checking to see if it would fit with some alterations helped make up my mind. Yep it will do the job. After scribing and cutting with the hacksaw, I relieved the back half of the tray from the cab. Then I started to fit the tray into place on the rear end of the Antar and with some filing and the job was done.
Then I looked at one or two different jibs and I selected the 8 wheel crane No 30 C3 which seemed to look good for the job at hand. I had to drill out the turning King Pin hole ,which was a little small and drill into the pivoting shaft too so that it could be screwed from underneath the Antar chassis and through to the tray.
The jib ballast block was hitting the storage boxes on the Antar, so I had to grind this away a bit and filled the gap left with some car filler and some super glue first to the surface of the metal. Having positioned the parts together for the final fitting check, it was time for the paint stripping.
As the Antar had domed axle ends and I didn't want to grind one end off, so as to take the wheels off before stripping and painting. I could have masked them up or use Vaseline, (petroleum jelly) which I sometimes use to protect the plastic wheels from the harsh chemicals. I can also use this process for painting as it leaves a film on the surface, so the paint wont stick on to the plastic. It is easily cleaned off later on. I then clean off the bulk of the paint and sometimes I have to use a craft knife and a pin to take off some of the small amount of paint that is left. When this process is finished, I clean the metal surface with a scourer pad pinched from my wife cupboard and give a light rub to take off any blemishes and scratches to the metal with fine sand paper. This also helps with paint adhesive as the die-cast metal is not as pores as the old lead concept days. It is also a good idea to prep the surface with etching primer so that the under coat connects to the metal surface which is the norm with any metal surface.
I decided that the tray and the rear of the Antar should be fixed into position with some car filler to hold it into place. Just before the filler goes to hard, some green trimming off any access of material is needed, for it is better to do this straight away instead of letting the filler go to hard. You can get a very sharp finish which doesn't need sanding much if you are careful enough.
My favourite green for the finish is Brunswick Green, which is similar to the old British Racing green. After the painting process is done and enough time for the paint to curer over several days, the assembly takes place. I used a hook used from the Scammel Breakdown truck purchased from the Recovery Toys. I was going to use the plastic crane hook but I thought it looked too bulky. I drilled into the goose-neck at the end of the jib and fitted the hook with a pin and burred the end of the pin.
So the modification is complete and you can see there isn't any paint on the wheels, although these wheels have seen some tough times during its history of being played with. I suppose those wheels could tell some tales of being zoomed around the place when nice and shiny like new.
All is needed is some decals to be made for the front doors and rear mudflaps and it is ready for RAEME tank support company. The Australian army didn't purchase the Mighty Antar when they required the Centurion Tank as they had Macks and Whites left over from the Second World War. These were replaced by the Scammel and now they are back to the Macks.
This is the second attempt to place this blog on the Mighty Antar conversion. So don't ask me what happened as it just disappeared. Must have been those alt delete buttons again.
The Matchbox major packs hit the toy world in 1957 being slightly larger than the 1 to 75 series and that 1o model toys were produced until 1966. The fist two were the M1-a Caterpillar Earth Scraper and the M2-a Bedford S type Ice Cream Tractor and single axle trailer.
The A1-a Car Transporter Bedford S type tractor and double rack trailer came out in 1957 and were issued and sold under the Accessories pack.
In 1961 the M2-b Bedford TK type tractor and York trailer replaced the M2-a Bedford S type Ice Cream Truck and trailer.
The other Bedford S type was the Bedford S Tipper 40 B3. This revaluation of the 7 ton truck was so popular being called the Big Bedford and the British Army adopted the four wheel drive R type which was a 3 ton which the army nicknamed the Green Goddess with its very high wheel clearance.
They came in 6 cylinder petrol engine or with a Perkins R6 diesel and later on the Leyland o 350 diesel became available. This modern type cab was had strong American influences in its rounded cab design within there first production in the 1950's followed by the TJ which lasted to the 1990's In the 1960's a complete cab design had arrived with the TK Bedford Cab over.
The above are some progress pictures of a cab with front wheels only being renovated or major rebuilding of the Bedford S major. The next is for the box trailer or pan which ever you might like to call it.
At first I tried to see what the Bedford would look like with a rear of a dodge cattle truck in single rear axle with a flat rigid tray. Then I changed my mind and placed a tandem wheel rear end of the Bedford petrol tanker which gave it a rugged chunky look that I was after. Then it became a tractor for a semi trailer which was originally a Yatming box converted to black plastic regular wheels from Matchbox.
The other is the inclusion of windows vacuum formed to fit.
If added some more pictures to help the reader and test out my new camera.
Thank you all for visiting.
What do you do with a dilapidated well loved old scraped die cast toy. Yes you can bring it back to life to its original state, but this is sometimes very hard as parts are not available at all for the complete make-over. Some times I let my imagination go and dive into my collection of scrape bits and peaces collected over the years. I am always cannibalising some old discarded wreaked toy for parts just like many of us do when scrounging around the Flea Markets or whatever for re-births.
First was the Dinky Honest John rocket launcher ramp that had lost its way from the rest of the truck. Then I had to fill in the center of step down ridged tray of the plane transporter with a rear cab of a K134/1 Peterbilt Fire Spotter Plane Transporter. Then my imagination had to go into overdrive and fitting bits of plastic junk into something that may look like something out of Space Wars. A thorougher clean down by stripping the paint off with some paint stripper. As I didn't want to separate the spring suspension and wheels from their mount and keep the windscreen undamaged from the paint stripper I masked up what I could and carefully applied the paint stripper.
After cleaning off all paint. came the task of marring the bits into place. Fist of all I did use bog on this one with some screws for holding down the peaces being added. This I did with a squash out type for the adhesive with body filler and green trimming where possible from the squash out for the central crew cab. A little bit of sanding and paint preparation was carried out with primer. Before painting I used warmed up petroleum jelly over the plastic parts of the under carriage and wheels so as to put a film on that surface. The windows were re-masked and paint process was completed in the normal way. After spray painting and washing away the vaseline painted areas and demasking the finished product is complete.
In the end this is what it turned out like and some of my collector friends said to me, do you want to sell it and the answer is no, no not on your life mate. Now that I have found a compressing or zip software program I can now submit these photos. Below are some of the much older conversions and re paints of some wrecks that I have done. The wooden 5.5 BL Gun was carved and wood turned by me. Even-though it is near enough to scale along side a Britain, Dinky and Airfix 5.5 Guns. The picture blow has part of a lithograph from the Battle of Quatre Bras which was 48 hours before the famous Battle of Water Loo. The original painting was done by a female artist and prints can be obtained from the British Museum.
Some more of my rebuilds back in the early 2008.