Improving the Tamiya Ferrari F50 1/12 scale: The yellow dream!

by Mario Covalski © 2010 Modeler Site

Legal Notice

No material from Modeler Site any Web site owned, operated, licensed, or controlled by Damian Covalski may be copied, reproduced, republished, uploaded, posted, transmitted, or distributed in any way, except that you may download one copy of the materials on any single computer for your personal, non-commercial home use only, provided you keep intact all copyright and other proprietary notices. Modification of the materials or use of the materials for any other purpose is a violation of Damian Covalski's copyright and other proprietary rights.

Read More here > Legal notice

If you’re a Ferrari fan in 1/12 scale and want to add a F40, F50 and Enzo to your collection, you’ll find nothing good to build. There two kits available of the F40: one from Protar/Revell and the other from Monogram but in my opinion, none of them are worth the effort. Thus there’s no other solution than resorting to the diecast Tamiya and Kyosho have been offering. Without entering into details, the Tamiya Enzo and the Kyosho F40 are acceptable but not the Tamiya F50 1997 release.


I bought on eBay a Tamiya F50 #23104 for a good price thinking it was the same quality as the Enzo. I was surprised when receiving the huge box since its presentation was good but the model inside looked a little better than a Burago or Maisto. I’ve some experience with diecast, in the 90’s I’ve detailed several 1/18 from Burago, Maisto and Minichamps, precisely the F40, F50 and the 288. Details were in general poorer than a 1/24 kit and very doubtful accuracy; even nonexistent in several cases.

Finally, I decided I would detail the Tamiya F50 to an acceptable standard so that it looked like a model……and not a simple toy. The aim of this article is to share this experience with others.

Tamiya’s model

It’s incredible that Tamiya have offered such a bad model as the F50, just a toy. The engine comes poorly detailed and bad represented, the wheels and tires are wrong, it lacks of PE parts, grill for bumper and rear grill have been made out of plastic…well, an endless list and this before studying the subject in depth.

The arrows show the wrong shape of the wheels and tires

The reference book I have is the Ferrari F50 from Automobilia, a good material, anyway I repeat this is a cheap Chinese toy.


I regret to say this since Tamiya is my idol, but here they failed and it’s incredible that they have made a reissue in 2003 (the yellow F50 I got) even worse than the offered in 1997.

Where to start from? 

This article is devoted basically to collectors/modelers or less experienced modelers, advanced probably will follow their own way.
I had to make several decisions about the level of details I would pursue and the use of aftermarket or not. Thus I started to disassemble the model, remove the bolts that attach the doors and remove them very carefully, it’s a must not to damage the yellow paint (or red if you have this version) all the rest has solution. I kept the doors taking much care.

Next, it was time for the screw bolts of the lower area. The one in the front doesn’t have to be removed.

This note is offered in PDF format to be read or printed using Acrobat reader, contact our webmaster > Here

Includes more than 71 pics, here we show only the text pages.


Esta Nota es ofrecida en formato PDF, el cual puede ser leído o impreso usando el Acrobat reader, contacte a nuestro webmaster > Aquí

Incluye más de 71 imágenes, aquí solo mostramos las paginas de texto.


Big size photos are only available in our PDF format.

Support us ordering our notes in PDF > Here