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Once again I'm starting something new with several projects ongoing... but as so often there's nothing to do about it. When I got the first new 1/24 Renault 4 kits, the sunroof version, from Ebbro I was impressed with the content and almost started one the same day, but I really wanted to start one with the plain standard roof, which should come later, so nothing happened.

The next to come from Ebbro was the Fourgonnette which would possibly be even more interesting. The other day they arrived, a few months(!) before anticipated. When opening the first box it was immediately clear I had to start one right away.

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The kit offers parts to build different versions; the model with the latest square plastic front grille and the mid model from -67 on with the rounded aluminium grille, as on the box art. Unfortunately not the oldest model which IMO has best looking front. Never mind, the older of the two included versions is also very nice.

When going through the kit it seems to be made as the later version with many of the important parts supplied to back date, but not when it comes to details in the engine bay. Might need some work here. I'll try to be restrictive though. I have plenty of references if need be, including all factory repair manuals and spare part books from -62 up to the -80's. This is just a small selection of the R4 books from my Renault library. :)

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I made a start yesterday cleaning up the body shell, which looks very nice. Sanded off a few ejector marks in the roof and filled some under the front end. I'm going to build it with all doors closed so I will prepare everything to complete the body shell first.

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There were also mould parting lines to be taken care of in the rear corners.

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The windscreen is clear and a good fit. The visible mounting lugs should disappear when the black rubber surround is painted. There is an inner part to complete the firewall that I will also fit before any paint.

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As the kit offers the late version as well the plastic air intake grille is present, and will disappear if the older style cover is used. That cover is just a little tiny short of covering the top edge, so I'm filling the joint first. There should also be thin strip on the top edge that is the cover hinge, which is missing. I'll see if I can add that. The firewall is a bit compromised in the mid section, but I will not bother with all of that. I have also filled the battery mounting slot in front right corner. On the older version it is mounted on the right firewall which will need a little work to accept it.

R4F6.jpg

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This brings back some memories. My first girlfriend's father ran a fleet of these for his business, and a hatchback for family use.

Basic, crude but very comfortable. Going back to '67 now.

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After sanding the filler the cover is fitted. There is hardly any room to add the hinge strip, not sure I will bother.

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I moved on and test fitted the doors. All gaps when closed are sizeable, but pretty much like the real car where some gaps are huge indeed. However, the slots in all openings that are for the open door options must be filled, or they will easily be seen. I have glued Evergreen strips that were cut to a tight fit. They now need to dry over night before I can cut and sand them to shape.

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On the right side there need to be space for accessories inside the engine bay and on the left side the silencer is on the outside above the wheel. There shall be a hole for the exhaust pipe there, haven't looked closer how Ebbro has solved that yet.

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Looking good Jorgen, I see you've drifted off subject a little, as don't we all. I'll follow your build with interest. Now what we need is a Citroen van...

Colin

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This brings back memories I did my apprenticeship on these, 8's, 10's and 16's so will follow this with interest!

Roger

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Yes, the French did make cars with some strange features. Comfortable, but technically challenging to work on due to bolting lots of fittings on top of engines, and unorthodox thinking in the design department.

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Looking good Jorgen, I see you've drifted off subject a little, as don't we all. I'll follow your build with interest. Now what we need is a Citroen van...

I do drift around, I'm a quite complex personality... :)

This brings back memories I did my apprenticeship on these, 8's, 10's and 16's so will follow this with interest!

That's great, all lovely cars. My current 1/1 enthusiast fleet includes a nice 1970 R16, always a joy to drive. And interesting to work on.

Yes, the French did make cars with some strange features. Comfortable, but technically challenging to work on due to bolting lots of fittings on top of engines, and unorthodox thinking in the design department.

Vive la France! :)

I found an interesting little fault in Ebbro's tooling. Here is the left side door opening, this is how the lower rear corner is supposed to look like, a nice rounded corner.

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And here is the right side. A sharp angle.

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I glued a filling piece of Evergreen strip to be shaped later. The problem is the same on the ordinary hatchback body as can be seen.

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All doors seem to sit slightly low if just glued as they are, not by much though. I glued 0,25 mm thick Evergreen around the roof hatch inner surface to adjust. This is probably a more complicated way to do things, but sometimes I like to work like that.

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After sanding off a little from the strip I got a satisfying fit and glued the hatch in place.

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The rear door got the same treatment along the edges.

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I sanded off a little to get the fit I wanted, and also carefully checked that the inner section/window still fitted.

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The door glued in place. The hinges will get some more attention later.

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After much test fitting I decided to only add two tiny sections of 0,25 mm thin Evergreen strip to place the doors as I wanted. It's important to keep checking that the inner sections/windows fit correctly as the doors are installed permanently.

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I have good help in those matters from Dita. It actually works surprisingly well working with her in my lap...

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And the doors glued. The top hinges need more work just like those at the rear.

R4F20.jpg

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Jorgen, are you sure it's you making the Renault and not the cat? You know how pusshytehy can be. I like the idea of the windows and door cards as a one piece moulding. I don't think you are complex in the slightest, unless that is what all modellers are...

Enjoying watching this build

Colin

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Wonderful stuff again J├Ârgen, great work on the details so far. The fella I work for had

4 of these and always says they were a great car, and as a Renault aficionado, you might

be interested to know, (or you might not) that yesterday I just got a new chair for the modelling

room from a Renault showroom I was helping to demolish,

Sean

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Thanks a lot guys. :)

I prepare some more parts while I'm working on the body shell. Here are some interior parts.

R4F21.jpg

I glued the engine/gearbox halves. Then looked at the other parts. Hmm...

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I'm afraid the engine and gearbox are not looking very convincing. The cylinder head is wrong around the spark plug recesses, the alternator not placed quite correct and the gearbox is, well, strange. It's supposed to represent the new 4-speed version from the later -70's, but not very well. The older 4-speed which was a development of the original 3-speed looks quite different. I will have to do some work here even if I'm trying to avoid it.

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The gaps around the bonnet looks huge and I thought I would have to widen the bonnet to make it OK. However, I think it will be good when the body is glued to the chassis if one is just careful to adjust the gap while the glue settles.

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The main chassis part and interior floor.

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Here they are cleaned up and the mounting position for the alternative floor mounted hand brake lever is removed. The rear wheel wells are also added.

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The seats are another problem area. They are probably good for a late ordinary hatchback model, but not for an older one, nor for a Fourgonnette. They should look like the illustration for my car which is quite different.

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I might be better off using these, which are from Heller's 4CV, as a starting point.

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The seat problem reminds of my Renault Estafette project that first stalled on the seats. Then I scratched new seats, only to stall on the high roof. I really should get this going again, together with the Fourgonnette...

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I knew I had a set of real Fourgonnette seats of this model stored somewhere. This is what they should look like.

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The front suspension was fitted. The drive shafts will have to wait until the engine/gearbox goes in. The steering linkage is another thing that will need replacing, it's very visible on top of the gearbox and should be a more complex housing than this rod.

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The rear trailing arms is another thing not looking quite right, but when all is painted it won't make much difference.

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The exhaust system is the simple version exiting in front of the left rear wheel. In many markets it was routed around the rear suspension to exit under the rear bumper. That's what I need.

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I set about modifying it and building the extension from Evergreen rod bent over the heat from a soldering iron and a pipe from s syringe needle at the end.

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And here's the result of the efforts.

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I', enjoying watching your build, congrats with the exhaust extetion Jorgen. It's little tricks like these than make a model so much more interesting. I do hope the front wings pull in when you get to that stage, it's probablty just part of the moulding process that they are leaning outwards.

Colin

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Very impressive workmanship, interesting subject too.

There was a program recently that james may did which covered various desgins including the renault 4 and citroen 2cv, iconic cars alhough they wouldn't be my first choice of ride!

Rich.

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Cracking build so far. I was surprised at coming across this as it's not a subject I though the manufactures would have bothered with. Nice to see all the detail you are adding too, no doubt all those manuals are a boon.

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Thanks a lot guys. I have made some more progress over the last few days. Some of the exterior details have been prepared, but mostly it's about the detail under the bonnet. I'm only going to make it a bit more accurate for a model around 1968, nothing spectacular.

The six-blade fan in the kit is a modern feature, so I cut down a four blade from Heller's 4CV and started adapting it for the radiator. The radiator itself will need some work too, the right top corner is compromised and the two connections at the bottom are nothing like the real thing.

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There is no water pump in the kit, so I took the 4CV pump. It's not perfectly correct but when the connections are added later it will do. The end of the generator blob was filled and the tension wheel under it was cut down to a more reasonable size.

R4F38.jpg

I need to change the details and their placement on the right wheel well, this is what it's supposed to look like. The battery sits on the firewall on a shelf.

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I seem to have lost some photo, but I filled some mounting holes and modified the jack, the crank and the water tank. The jack is still a bit of a blob, but I'm leaving it, I think.

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The wind shield washer bottle was filed down and reshaped. The master brake cylinder in the kit is for the modern dual circuit system, so that was cut off and a single circuit cylinder and a round container was sourced from the scrap box.

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The top corner of the radiator was fixed and the two bottom connections removed.

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I need to make something to the weird steps in the firewall recess. I cut off and saved the voltage regulator and then removed some offending material.

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It won't be perfectly accurate, but it will be much closer to how it should look. This is from the R4 Super 1963 that I made a full ground up restoration to in the mid -90's.

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Thin sheet styrene was added inside and then 2-part filler applied.

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I have also started work on the oversized modern gear box. I've cut it down to be a bit more reminiscent of the old style 4-speed, it will still be a bit large but probably OK down there. I will add some surface details to it as well.

R4F47.jpg

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Nice work Jorgen. Only the Frogs could but the gearbox in front of the engine... Mr Isigonis put everything inline with the wheels and didn't that look good?

I'm enjoying your but seriously, I think I'm going to have to get one of these kits.

Colin

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