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As I got a warm reception to the Peterbilt conversion I showed you guys, I have been encouraged to put this latest project out for consideration....

So there is a vision here....... this is to be a heavy haul lowbed tractor, that a western coastal logging company would have. Our west coast, has some of the largest off road specific built trucks in the world, these units are huge, and this vision , was taken from that concept, and made into what could be a smaller logging company that has to move loaders, Cats, feller bunchers or highlines , the big heavy iron.... this is a fictional build, not taken after any specific unit, but has all the pertinent details.............

The model kit is the re-relased 1/25 scale AMT Autocar DC 9964B Tandem Dump truck. This kit was originally released in the late 1970's or early '80's, I recall building it box stock , many many years go... actually still have most of it... so there is going to be some modifications and  hopefully my skills have improved a little bit over the years and do this old kit justice. Everyone knows these old AMT kits were cutting edge at the time but by todays standards, require a little bit of extra work to achieve a good job, BUT, in some cases , they are the only game in town and this is one of them. Now... I am not  a huge Autocar fan ( as the ones we had at work with the triple 4 Cummins 15 speed air shift clutches , were VERY heavy and a bit clumsy for our application of road maintenance. They were overly heavy on the front axle, took 900 acres to turn around, the air clutch was difficult for some of the guys to get used to, because it was on or off and only needed an inch or so travel not the full travel as a regular mechanical clutch. As the had the triple 4 up front in winter, they were touchy as there was no weight on the drivers and coming down steep icy hills could be an adventure)  BUT Autocar has a very proud history and heavy trucks is their thing, they made lots of them during the war and they KNOW heavy trucks. So with all that in mind my vision had only one real choice, so it is the DC9964B.

So, the AMT kits need a little help in the detailing and clean up of parts even though Round two have cleaned the molds, they stuill need a little love, and as mentioned, by today's standards , some extra detailing can be useful......... so I am going to attempt to try and give this old kit a little love..... so this is my first WIP ( sort of) I hope I put the pics and the details in the right places... it might be a dog's break fast, but here goes......

I did the frame first, cleaning all the cross members and gently adding each to a frame rail and holding them tight until all the glue dried, so as to keep it straight and true, kind of a dull, no mind thing so no pic... then came the trans mission rather plain.....so I added inspection plates, and bolts to hold the plates on... I LOVE Meng bolts...

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Then as the  rear end and springs got a little love..........  You will notice that the rear leaf's have a silly gaping hole .... sigh..... so that had to be filled, it was and turned out 'ok ' as it is on the inside no real big deal. The oil drain plugs, as simple as that is, makes a huge difference under a splash of paint and some mud. The rear ends and suspension are a bit plain...

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Then the 235 Cummins engine... again very basic.. so a few bolts on the fuel pump, and ultimately on the air compressor as well, then a splash of paint an airline and fuel line and it starts to take shape...then a little oil leakage and some dusty dirty roads and she is beginning to look like a an engine

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Jeff, thanks for sharing. It's great to hear the back story on some of these subjects and with your hands on experience with the real things, it brings a greater sense of appreciation of your work. 

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So then came.... " should I plumb it or not"??  too much open space within the frame rails to not make it look busy..... THEN, the bigger question.... stay with the old school 'wedge' brakes or move to 'S' cam.......... after some consultation with my buddy RonG, it was decided to keep it old school, and stay with the wedge brakes........ Not the greatest set up by any means, but in theory a good idea, .... I had wedge brakes on a 1973 Ford Louisville 9000 Cement truck.... not the greatest for holding a loaded cement ruck on a steep hill..... but it is old school, and that is the way it will be, so had to drill out the very small brake chambers to accept 'air lines'....

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so trying to think ahead, I took the frame and gave it a shot of semi gloss to get into all the nooks and crannies, before I totally assembled it....and had added some of the rear suspension... the rear suspension included in this kit is VERY accurate and represents the Rockwell suspension quite faithfully................so I added the spring hangers for paint... once this dried I started the air plumbing  as some of it needs to be tucked behind springs, and hangers and rear ends...

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Had a bit of a battle with the Rockwell suspension, but persisted and got her together and straight and level, and even a splash of paint...

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Now it's fire wall time, again old kit not a lot of detail............. so a little wire and some drilled rod....the horizontal 'valve' across the top of the fire wall is to represent the windshield wiper air valve, yes the wipers were operated by air... and the  jar with the line on the right is to represent the air brake alcohol container with the line to the air system. This precludes today's Bendix Air Driers, where as back in the day, in cold climates like here in British Columbia, the air system always contains a lot of moisture due to the compressor generating heat during it's operation and leaking some oils, when the weather is cold, the air systems were somewhat prone to freezing, which is not a great thing when going down a hill loaded and needing to make a brake application and it was frozen, this alcohol system was set up so that every time you made a brake application a small shot of alcohol was sent into the lines and prevented freeze up. I worked really well, as long as during your pretrip you topped it up. I always checked, before I took the truck out, because the last guy would just jump out of the truck and head home, and it was always good to be sure, just in case anyway. This system is long gone today, but I thought it would add a little cool little known detail...

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So , now it is  paint time, as I wanted to do an older well used but not abused unit, and sort of period correct, a fancy paint job was not in the picture, and no metallic paints either, so as most old school trucks were either yellow or green or a light blue, something like that, I decided as I had already done a couple yellow ones, and Cathy said NO red ( huh) green was the solid choice... had to represent being out in the weather and not fussed over, as it is a working truck not a show piece... I chose MM enamel Dark European green..... after sanding the cab and deepening the door gaps, she got a shot of Euro Dk Green..... after the paint dried, it was very flat, so I took a cloth and rubbed it to take the flatness off and give it a 'sheen'... that worked a charm... it cam out exactly like oxidized paint, precisely what I was after............. then a light brushing of white pigments to tone down the green a little more and to show 'rain' streaks, then a little light go of rusty pigments on the door hinges , door handle and back window seal..... the air cleaner needed to be modified to a horizontal style rather than vertical as included in the kit.... so some drilling and adding some aluminum tube, and there you have it... old school.... de chromed the luberfiners, and added them and the appropriate hoses......... the glass is one piece,( I hate that ) but I did try and cut the driver's door glass out to give it a little more visual appeal. Nothing too fancy on the interior, but did use Gofer instrument decals and some crystal clear for gauge faces

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Now it is time to install the engine, line up the drive line with the rear ends, and add fuel tanks and plumbing... fuel tanks were detailed with a plate for the fuel line fitting and fuel vent fitting as well as fuel transfer line.... also added the modified steps to the tanks, the air line from the compressor to the first wet tank was also installed. The transmission inspection plate looks a lot better with a splash of paint and some oil leakage as well...

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33 minutes ago, mark31 said:

Ooo boy i  take a seat and a beer.

Will follow so far great start.

 

Mark

 

Thanks Mark, I was kind of hoping there may be some interest.... a craft beer? :beer: Glad you are here .....

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As it was time to decide on wheels and tires, a new after market front heavy duty steer axle was needed to accommodate the new front steer wheels and tires as the kit set up would not work... so a  CTM  metal and resin front axle was installed.... and all the steering assembly had to be adjusted and modified somewhat to allow the axle to be installed......... took a little brain power and a look at a few old school Autocar front axle and steering assy's.  Happy to say it all connected and 'could' work in real life......

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Next.................. Tires.... for a heavy haul off road unit , 'street tires' are absolutely not acceptable, for a couple reasons, first off they are too light, although, very heavy to lift and mount on rims and heavier to mount to the truck ( ask how I know .....) they are too light for very heavy loads and for off road operations, as the side walls are not strong enough for  huge weight and the face could not stand up to sharp rocks as neither the side wall. SO.......... a much heavier tire is going to be required. So, I managed to source the perfect off road tire for this project..... the kit tires represent a Uniroyal Fleetmaster 11:00 R 22 highway tire, you will find on any highway Class 8 truck....not really conducive for heavy off road work, so I decided to use the Roadx DT990 16 ply off road tire.... a much larger tire than the Fleetmaster style and would absolutely take the punishment of heavy off road use, very strong side walls for weight and rough road, as well as very deep tread for sharp rocks , pot holes etc.... a photo of the real thing to compare... the rear drive rims were swapped out for resin replacements that are much finer detailed and represent Dayton heavy duty drive rims much better than the kit ones.... Drivers,  tires and rims............ sorted

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Now............. need a proper heavy duty steering tire and rim..... the kit came with a Dayton style 5 spoke 'float ' rim..... again not conducive for off road operations.... I was going to use an aftermarket float tire and rime, but decided they were too small.... wide enough but not tall enough and would not be, as in real life a workable........ need a viable option.... so Roadx is the call with a heavy duty Dayton 6 spoke rim, to match the drivers.... first pic is the kit tire  ( r ) and aftermarket wide float...next pic is the replacement Roadx tire and new rim... the rim is 3D printed and VERY detailed......... steering axle, tire and rim, ...........sorted....

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The cabin painting came out great, Jeff, I love the slightly weathered, bit sun bleached appearance. Tyres and rims look great too.
By accident, I have seen a Peterbilt resin engine some minutes ago. It might not be for this build, but...

GPmodeling DD60: Engine 1/24 scale - Peterbilt Detroit Diesel Series 60 - for Italeri references 3857, 3894, 740 and 746, or Revell references REV07527 and 7527 (ref. DD60) | SpotModel

Cheers Rob

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4 hours ago, DocRob said:

The cabin painting came out great, Jeff, I love the slightly weathered, bit sun bleached appearance. Tyres and rims look great too.
By accident, I have seen a Peterbilt resin engine some minutes ago. It might not be for this build, but...

GPmodeling DD60: Engine 1/24 scale - Peterbilt Detroit Diesel Series 60 - for Italeri references 3857, 3894, 740 and 746, or Revell references REV07527 and 7527 (ref. DD60) | SpotModel

Cheers Rob

Thanks for the kind comments Rob ……. Now to that 60 series…. Great , now I have to spend more money 🤣🤣 I may have to get that engine as it looks REALLY nice but as you mention, not for this particular truck. As this is a representation of a much older unit, the power will come from a 335 Cummins naturally aspirated non turbo engine. Old school lower power high torque. BUT I am also working on a Peterbilt 378 line truck and that 60 series will fit PERFECTLY. Thanks for the link, I had not seen that before 

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10 hours ago, DRUMS01 said:

Enjoying your work and the direction this is going, keep it up!

Thanks very much. I hope you will like the final result 

Jeff

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