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The car I wanted to build is the Kimi Raikkonen’s Ferrari 2007 in the splendid livery that was used in the second part of the season, where the Ferrari fluo red used in the previous races (and years) was replaced by a stunning, very characteristic (sort of) candy metallic red.
The build was planned as curbside model, with great attention to the detailing of the exterior and visible areas of the car, so very small efforts was put the internal mechanics. The kit is the Fujimi, with aftermarket decals for the tobacco sponsorship as the main add-on. Some additional aftermarket parts were also used here and there, such as antennas, rivets and so on, together with some scratchbuilt parts.
As previously mentioned, the aim of this work is to describe the build of a curbside model, i.e. a model with all the cowling parts on. The scope is to display the main design line of the car instead of the underlying mechanics. I generally prefer to plan at the beginning of the build if the cowling will be on or not, or if the wheels will be in place, building the model consequently.
In fact, 1/20 models with highly detailed mechanics are generally quite difficult to close, mainly because of the thickness of the parts. So, I never build models with detachable cowling or other parts. If the car will be shown open, I work very hard in obtaining the best details, otherwise I prefer to remain focused on other aspects of the building, such as body parts fitting, painting and external details.
This will result in a build process quite different from that described in the kit instructions, since all chassis, cowling parts and aerodynamic devices should be put together. In this way, any joint could be conveniently smoothed. However, this will result in the need for continuous checks of the building process itself: if I mount the cowling on the car sidepods, will I be able to put the body on the flat bottom? Will I be able to insert the seat within the chassis? Will I be able to correctly mount the suspension arms? Will the car lie correctly on the four wheels? Will the car height from the floor correct? All this questions need to be clearly answered, and are in some cases a little bit tricky in F1 cars, in which chassis, body parts and suspensions need to be treated as a whole.
A first look at the kit pieces puts in evidence that the fitting between main parts (chassis parts, cowling and sidepods) is far from perfect. This implies that some work will be necessary to put things together smoothly.
The chassis main parts (upper and floor) were glued together in order to close all the seams and allowing sanding and puttying where needed.
The bridge wing was put in place, then the two wings (one par at the beginning) were cut away. Small holes will be drilled in the nose and in the wings so that two small metal pin could be used for fixing the wings in the correct position, with the smallest possible visible junctions. This sub-assembly operations are crucial for a curbside build, but as a consequence, several modifications should be done on other pieces to put all parts together. As an example, the seat needs to have some part cut out so that it could be mounted from the lower part of the chassis, that has now a narrower opening.
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