Model: (Click to see more) 58028: Toyota 4x4 Pick Up
Status: New built
Date: 24-Oct-2019
Comments: 14
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Not strictly a Tamiya 58028 of course, but essentially modelled on the same early 80's body style as the original Tamiya HiLux step-side pick up.

model name: Hopper's HiLux (aka. Cilla G)

driver: Jim Hopper (Chief of Police, Hawkins Indiana)

body: RC4WD Trailfinder II cab and grille, Loops RC step-side pick-up bed.

chassis: RC4WD leaf-sprung Trailfinder 2 ladder chassis (copy)

wheels: Tamiya King/Knight Hauler (1.7) - dual rear wheels

tyres: no-name all-terrain tread (1.7 x 85mm diameter)

motor & transmission: RC4WD 35T motor, 5:1 ratio planetary gearbox. RWD only

suspension: Tamiya Truck free-wheel front axle and leaf springs, RC4WD Yota II rear axle and leaf springs. Hot Racing 50mm (1/14th truck) shocks - twin shocks on rear.

wheelbase: 282mm

track width: f: 167mm / r: 180mm

overall width: 230mm

overall length: 475mm

overall height: 193mm

custom features: Where to begin?! - Without a doubt this has been my most complicated and elaborate scale build yet - essentially everything in this build has been modified in some way to create a unique example of a more lowly 2WD Toyota HiLux pick-up circa 1980.

There is a full and detailed build thread in the builds section of the TamiyaClub forum, but in summary... The Gelande/Trailfinder pattern aluminium ladder chassis (from Ebay) was modified to accept the slightly more narrow [1/14th scale] Tamiya Truck front axle (again a pattern aluminium part from Ebay), inverted so the leaf springs mount underneath - keeping the ride height lower, while the steering hubs are essentially like a portal axle, improving front ground clearance (see photos).

The rear axle is an RC4WD Yota II style (again, via Ebay) using longer 1/10th scale leaf springs (genuine RC4WD), similarly flipped over with the springs mounted under the axle.

The wheels are Tamiya 1/14th Truck plastic wheels (ie. 1.7 size) - modified with scale acorn nuts (6 bolt Toyota pattern) and centre hub-caps. They have also been rusted using a metal infused paint and activator solution to create real rust!

The body is a combination of the RC4WD Trailfinder II cab (essentially a Tamiya HiLux clone), with their 'Marlin Crawler' round headlight and grill panel, which is similar in style to the original Tamiya HiLux/Bruiser model. This was paired with a Loops RC step-side rear body tub (again, essentially a copy of the original Tamiya HiLux pickup bed), but which features a fully dropped bed height. I carefully removed the moulded tailgate and reattached it using hinges, and also extended the original step-side arches with styrene to cover the wider track of the vehicle with dual rear wheels.

The paintwork theme was always going to be a twist on a previous model I built - Tam Mater - itself based on the character Tow Mater from the movie Cars. In this regard, the main body would be blue with rusted panels (although not quite as extensively rusted as Mater), together with contrasting green doors.

Unlike my Tam Mater build which was based on a Lowride/Midnight Pumpkin 1950's F100 shell and meant it was difficult to create a removable bonnet as per the movie Mater - fortunately the HiLux shell is far easier to modify in that regard, which in turn meant I could also incorporate a fully detailed engine bay - with all the vehicle electronics disguised, or hidden between the engine bulkhead and full interior. The bonnet itself is held in place with four hidden magnets, so the vehicle can be run/displayed with or without the bonnet as desired.

The engine detail includes a V8 engine (motor) cover and air-intake assembly, while the internal cooling fan was removed and repurposed as a fan for the fabricated radiator cowl. There are twin batteries (ProLine accessories) including real grease on the terminals!, a brake servo constructed using random Tamiya sprue parts, and a pair of coolant/washer bottles made from a translucent case for X-acto blades, and detailed with suitable caps and translucent paint.

The interior is the full RC4WD set for the Trailfinder II, however that has a flat floor almost inline with the seat base, so I fabricated some full-depth footwells and a transmission tunnel from styrene, and covered the seats with actual flocking in a suitable 1980's shade of beige. I have also filled the interior with all manner of snacks, cigarettes and even a walkie-talkie radio, to keep in the theme of this being Hopper's drive on his day off.

All the windows in the cabin are custom made from 0.5mm clear lexan, both side windows slide up and down in their own custom runners, and the rear window features a slide opening, with a 'missing' centre panel. The wipers are actual metal (including tiny springs to hold them on the windscreen), and along with other parts of the body, have also been rusted with the Iron paint/activator solution for authenticity.

On the right hand side of the step-side bed is a Propane tank (the holder made from a bent wire coat-hanger), while on the left behind the driver - a fuel filler neck with removable (screw off) cap. The load bed sides have been capped with real cherry wood strips, complete with coach-bolts/screws made from pin heads.

The drop down tail-gate is secured with three dolls-house working hinges, and a pair of dead-bolts scratch build using aluminium rod/tube and styrene. The safety chains are short lengths of necklace chain, secured with small nails.

At the rear, the original metal chassis cross-member was cut down to fit between the narrow body sides, and mounted approximately 20mm further back on extensions, which also leaves room for a working winch mounted behind the cross-member, with the cable exiting through a roller fairlead above the tow hitch. The towing hitch was attached to the tow-bar (itself an inverted suspension bracket from the Yota II axles) using a scratch-built drop-plate made from styrene and suitably braced.

The rear lights are a pair of Axial mirror brackets, with the mirrors replaced with a pair of 12mm spot lights, and mounted upside down. These housings were modified to accept a 3mm LED in the top (rather than 5mm in the rear), and the rest of the lights are a customised RC4WD loom for the 1985 4Runner model in the [similar size] Trailfinder II lamp housings - with extensions and modifications to hide all the cables as required.

Unlike [almost all of] my other models, I did decide to forfeit the ability to fit a regular 6-cell NiMH battery pack (which would have fit under the bench seat at a pinch) and instead use a pair of smaller cube-shaped 2600mAh batteries - one under each seat - one to power the vehicle & lights, and one dedicated to the winch - although either can be connected to the ESC to extend running time.

While I had always planned to sign-write the doors (using dry transfer lettering) as a nod to the original Mater logos (but this being a HiLux, also put a Japanese twist on it), it was only once I'd decided on a suitable [scale] driver figure that the final concept was realised.

The casually dressed 'date night' Hopper from Stranger Things 3 was the perfect size (7' tall, so just under 6' in 1:1 size), and indeed, the initial articulation offered by the figurine meant his arms could be positioned perfectly with one hand on the wheel, and the other holding the window frame (complete with a custom rolled cigarette between his fingers). He did need some rather major surgery to his thighs so he could fit behind the wheel (using the upper legs from a Wild Willy figure), and once seated, I fixed his pose with superglue before filling, sanding and painting to hide all the original articulated joints.

A couple of other 'in theme' finishing touches were the engraved licence plates, plus I felt the No Problem/Problem upside down sticker was particularly appropriate!

The finishing touch was of course a way to display the hood once it was removed from the body to reveal the engine bay - and who better than Eleven to hold the hood up with one hand (using magnets!)

I trust you will enjoy exploring all the little details in the build - I've most likely still missed out something in the description I'm sure!

6 a modern twist on Tow Mater 7 bonnet held on with hidden magnets 3 original 1980s step-side HiLux - 2WD 3 wheel arches extended for dual rear wheels 4 you say TOYOTA I say TOMATA 3 real wood cappings on load bed sides 5 dented door and rusty wings 7 all-terrain tyres to fit 1.7 rims 2 Bruiser style round headlights and grille 2 detailed engine bay - that's a Tundra V8 baby! 6 Hopper's snacks, ciggies and a walkie-talkie 4 propane tank and custom bracket 4 screw on/off fuel-filler cap! 5 rusted wheels with scale hardware 2 twin exhausts, rear winch, engraved licence plate 3 working tailgate and latches 2 geeky reference to original HiLux factory 5 Eleven uses her powers (magnets!) to hold the hood 2 for when the vehicle is displayed 5 RC4WD liked it too




Wow, there is so much awesomeness baked into this fine creation I think my head is going to explode!!!!!! Holy crap!!!!!!!!!!!!!



Next level awesomeness !



I just can't find the right words...but straight into my favs !!



On a whole other level. I lack the patience/skill and imagination to do anything not even remotely close to this. Well a bit of fear Awesome job again!!!!



that is an awesome build, well done!



Fantastic work again JennyMo, that weather and rust work is superb and the overall look is great, original thinking, love it!






This vehicle is amazing congratulations !



?????? Damn how are you so good!!



Just one word, awesome!



Nice work!






Wow! Excellent work!

Mad Zero


I’ve seen real HiLux’s less realistic than this

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