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  1. Appreciate all the encouragement. Impressions are positive now the latest homemade FDM printed chassis is in my hands. The parts have been printed by @Jamesssb on a BearMera Mk3s with black Eryone PETG filament. The new chassis weighs 216.2g compared to 203.4g for the original Tamiya items (chassis and battery cover); so pretty close. From the outside there is a nice smooth sheen and once assembled, with the electrics in place up front, it is only from the inside of the battery bay that you can see where support material was required. It’s a very easy chassis to build because M3 x 10 mm self-tapping screws are used throughout. The ball joints for the dampers are a nice tight fit. Overall, it feels like the chassis could take quite a bit of punishment. I wanted to remove the camber at the rear and introduce a bit more at the front without fouling the drivetrain. With this version I’ve got the camber pretty close - so think we have a stable version for the time being and wanted to share some progress. I've tried to capture the similarities in the side-by-side shots with a restored original SWB from 1982. Temporarily I’ve added a basic set of FDM printed rims to double check both the i) track front and back, and ii) confirm the height of the body front and back. Some minor adjustments are needed but hardly anything noticeable to the naked eye. After more test driving I may raise the height of the wheelie bar to get longer wheelies during more of the battery life. Will now work on a new design for a set of wheels and will report back soon.
  2. I thank you for your comments @simensays - you raise valid points that I have struggled with. I very much admire the models both you and @Willy iine have made. I wanted the challenge of going down a different path - in the same way I respect @s2-g2 who is taking a different path again by redesigning and printing the body (https://www.instagram.com/p/CM3FGw8sYvt/?utm_medium=copy_link). With access to several NIB kits it would be too easy to build another one - but it still wouldn’t be a custom 4x4. I wanted to replicate the stance of the original SWB wheelbase model and initially investigated redesigning the rear suspension arms - we didn’t want to disturb the steering geometry at the front. In the end I felt that the body would still sit too high - especially at the back unless we lowered it by reducing damper travel but that seemed less than ideal. Admittedly the Tamiya GF-01 chassis has the same wheelbase as the LWB version (within a millimetre) but using the front axle as a reference point we calculated that the body would still be approximately 4.5 mm too far back when reversing the body posts around as @Willy iine has suggested. This might sound small (and can easily be disguised with a clever camera shot from the front) but compounded with my preference for a SWB wheelbase these little differences became a noticeable annoyance. In contrast, with a custom chassis we have complete control over several aspects, including, but not limited to: i) the wheelbase, ii) the position of the body over the axles, iii) the height of the body at the front as well as at the back, and iv) where the camber links are mounted. Little adjustments can bring nice benefits and the placement of the receiver switch to where it belongs next to Willy just made perfect sense while we were at it. Irrespective of the financial outlay, by the time I have invested effort in painting and weathering the body it becomes the most valuable part of my models. I didn’t want to cut holes to reduce the body height if I could help it - if anything I’d like to fill in the drivers footwell just like the original but we’ll see. I recognise that the SLS printing Shapeways offers is expensive today - it may become cheaper in the future - we all hope so. In the meantime if anyone did want to follow us then we could consider offering a FDM printed chassis for about the same price as a nice set of new tyres. Like so many things we do in this hobby - there isn’t always a good answer to ‘why?’ - but because we can is often enough.
  3. Having recently converted a GF-01 chassis to accommodate the Wild Willy 2 body (here) there was a lasting impression. That to replicate the look and feel of the 1982 original SWB then some custom design work would be required, namely: - a modified chassis with a shorter wheelbase and the body lowered and correctly positioned over both axles, and - custom wheels with an offset to get the correct track front and rear. Initial focus is on the chassis and getting the wheelbase right - once successful then attention will shift to the wheels. My initial GF-01 conversation (here) had been done with the spirit of: - maximising the use of Tamiya parts, and - minimising the impact on the body. After countless hours on a computer with a friend, @Jamesssb, and multiple working prototypes a new chassis design started to emerge. This chassis, we’ve called it GF-01 SWB, has the following characteristics: - 165 mm wheelbase (as per the first 1982 SWB Wild Willy), - compatible with GF-01 four wheel drive gears, suspension parts and wheelie bar, - compatible with the Wild Willy 2 chassis rails and body posts albeit with the height reduced by two holes, - requires only the the L-shaped wall on the underside of the WW2 body to be removed, and - correct ride height when used in conjunction with original or reproduction tyres and Tamiya hop up dampers. The hump pack has been inverted to save space and allow the height of the body to be reduced. The front camber link has been relocated in an attempt to try and replicate the characteristics of camber of the original. The rear camber link has been repositioned to reduce the camber during normal use - in an attempt to reflect that the original had a live axle and zero camber. For fun the receiver on/ off switch is located in the original position next to the driver and can accommodate the traditional protective rubber cover. Will put up on Shapeways when complete but suspect it won’t be cheap - but happy to take advice on alternatives. However, this approach will allow me to bash about with a model where consumable/ spare parts are readily available (and many metal aftermarket items) combined with a currently produced (cheap) body that requires minimal cutting (just the L-shaped wall on the underside). I’m keen to hear suggestions that could be factored into the design; for example, maybe a LWB version with the rear axle pushed back by 10 mm. Will post more pictures as the project develops.
  4. ... and don’t forget that a couple of coats of Tamiya PS-53 lame flake before the colour coats can be cool too.
  5. I understand the chrome was applied on the outside of the Avante and Hotshot limited edition bodies so the effect will be a bit different to PS paints applied on the inside. There are two separate gold chrome ones on a popular online auction site up for sale at the moment - but the prices aren’t for the faint hearted!
  6. Can’t recommend TS-101 highly enough - it’s a great base for TS-26 and often only requires a thin coat to ‘neutralise’ a darker colour already down. It is really good and means that only a thin coat of TS-26 is required thus reducing the risk of any runs.
  7. Suggest a white base for red although if you can find it I think the Tamiya pink primer is superb - even for small areas. Suggest a white base for yellow - definitely don’t use black. I find the Tamiya fine white primer is dry enough to sand in ten minutes and ready to apply another coat at room temperature. I found my model making career made a huge leap forward once I had discovered water based paints. I find water based coats are easiest for the details - easier to fix mistakes and easy to build up with thin coats without clogging the details and don’t bleed (giving you that grey). I too have just painted and detailed a Hotshot driver that you can’t see with the body on 🤣; you can see the paints I used here in my showroom - hope it helps: https://www.tamiyaclub.com/showroom_model.asp?cid=136304&id=18923
  8. PS-53 lamé flake (please don’t be put off by the name - it is awesome) goes down first - I found that 2/3 coats gives a good sparkle. I can’t tell you how superb this is in sunlight. Don’t know why Tamiya have used a dark coloured paint cap because it works on all shades - all their other ‘clear’ paints have clear caps. Pictures never do it justice - I have promised myself never to paint a polycarbonate body ever again without PS-53 - it even transforms metallic colours. (I will only break this rule if ever the 959 gets re released!) The picture shows the 2/3 coats of lamé flake - excuse the extra masking tape but after I’d had the scissors out the protective cover was lifting in a few areas but hope this helps. When spraying multiple parts - like the body and spoiler - I taped the parts to a board in the proximity they are on the model before spraying - that way both parts receive the same amount of sparkle, you don’t want to paint them separately only to reunite them and realise that one sparkles more than the other. For fun non-scale models PS-53 is an absolute MUST - just like having bearings. One can did both my Hotshot and Avante with a dribble leftover. Then PS-18 - metallic purple - goes next and I probably did 3/4 coats. The PS-41 - bright silver went last - probably only gave 2 dusting coats because it provides good coverage and is enough to take away any translucent nature of the purple. Usual rules apply - gently and evenly scuff the surface first and make sure it’s dry and clean - the PS paint is very flexible and sticks well so this number of coats is not a problem. As long as the coats are even and nothing runs it’s hard to make a mistake - especially with the Hotshot where there is no masking required - the Avante was a bit trickier because the masking has to line up with the trim decal. Looking at the time stamps of pictures taken before and after - on a warm day - the painting process only took half an hour from first coat to pulling off the protective covering - couldn’t be easier.
  9. I’ve got a new set unopened if still interested. Have just completed a BS but used the original stickers.
  10. Just posted purple in a showroom: https://www.tamiyaclub.com/showroom_model.asp?cid=136304&id=18923
  11. Success! Going through the password reset process using a different email service to hotmail did the trick - many thanks for the perseverance.
  12. I’m struggling to understand how Microsoft will interpret my request; “I’d like you to make sure I receive all emails from info@tamiyaclub.com - every other email is blocked but the others come through just fine.” What are the defining characteristics of the emails that your server sends that don’t get through? Also, I can’t be the only user of tamiyaclub who has registered with a hotmail account so am especially curious why I only receive every other email. Can someone with admin rights change my hotmail address to another non-hotmail address? Or, can someone with admin rights close my current account and allow me to open a new one? I’m genuinely keen to pay to contribute to the community but am baffled how we got into this special situation and how someone with admin rights can’t make an override to fix a situation that has persisted for weeks.
  13. Have added tamiyaclub.com to the Hotmail white list but sadly the first request for a password reset email never arrived! Have tried at 20:40.
  14. Is it technically possible to assign a different email address to the account?
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