Friday, 12 December 2014

Bedford ML Ambulance conversion - Part 3

Onto the cab and bonnet. Now, this isn't going to be a complex conversion - nor the most historically accurate - it's just a simple 're-badging' job. The grille of the Airfix Austin kit will be replaced with the Bedford grille from the Cooper Craft kit. So let's do a test fitting to see what work this entails.

First of all I will put together the cab's front end, thats he windscreen section and bonnet...

Now this doesn't look too bad at first glance. But even if you build this kit as intended the original Airfix parts are a little vague in their fit, so you do have to do some 'jiggling' (and sanding and filling) to get the whole bonnet/front-end section to play together nicely.

Oh, so close, but I don't win a coconut! The Bedford grille nearly fits onto the Austin bonnet parts. Some more sanding and filling will be needed to make a perfect fit.

Accuracy note: As I said, this is a fudged conversion. To do this job properly you would need to modify the bonnet as well as the grille. The vents in the bonnet sides - for example - are different on the Bedford.

The bonnet planning done it's time to continue with the parts of the original Airfix kit that go together as normal. So, let's continue with the cab interior.

The Austin/Bedford is novel as the cab is semi-open (it just has some canvas covers that act as removable 'doors'). Therefore I think it is easier if you start the painting process at this stage without the bonnet section or some of the interior parts so that you can base paint the cab's rear wall properly...

You can see the amount of parts that have to be squeezed into the cab, so it's
probably best if you base paint the basic cab surfaces before fitting these.
Having sprayed the base colour onto the cab's back wall and floor you can now start to add some of the interior detail. This way everything get's painted correctly - otherwise trying to paint the interior with things like the spare wheel and driver in place would be a pain in the butt. But that's for another post!

Next: Cab finalised and bonnet/roof to add...Let's finish this thing!

Colour: The traditional colour that most modellers associate with the Austin K2 ambulance is a khaki colour (and that is what Airfix suggests), but it also came in green and - importantly - the ones supplied to the Soviet Union were all painted in green schemes, so that's what I am going for.

Note on Cooper Craft kit: You may well be thinking 'but what about the rest of the Cooper Craft kit?' Well, don't panic, it's not going to waste. I have another conversion planned where the remainder of the Oxford truck kit will be being used. I don't like waste either! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment