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McLaren Honda MP4/6 Ayrton Senna 1/12

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@Simon: planning isn't exactly my favorite bit of the build process, but it is a necessity in order to find out what to do. 


@Shaun: that must be the language barrier, I'm by no means down about the build. There's also no reason to be, because safe for the order of the build, nothing has changed. 


I'm happy to be able to start making the engine, as that's the part I very much look forward to. 


Thanks for your motivational remarks!

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23. The final three drawings were mad and the bottom panel was bent into shape. 





24. These extensive preparations have gathered me several insights, for instance the presence of a noticeable serial number on the transmission. I intend to (try to) photo etch that (treshold for my other build, now I'll really have to do it)... fortunately I have all tools already.




The transmission-serial code of one of the no. 2 McLarens (driven by Gerhard Berger) was MP4-6-2000D. Does anybody know, extremely coincidentally or endlessly specialistically knowledgably, whether Ayrton Senna's car had the same transmission number? In case nobody knows, I'll use the mentioned code. I could take a gamble and assume that Berger's car had serial MP4-6-2000B and MP4-6-2000D, Senna's car MP4-6-2000A and MP4-6-2000C, but it wouldn't be more than that... a gamble. I prefer to use something I know really exists. 


@Spookytooth sent me, very kindly (thanks again!!), a Tamiya magazine from 2004 featuring a highly detailed McLaren MP4/6 build. The article contains plenty of useful information and tips to take into account while building this model. It has already pointed out several things I wasn't aware of. 


Spent time: 4,5 hours (build) + 11,5 hours (study)

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@Spookytooth A colleague builder advised me to use 3D-decals (see here). That's a good idea so I ordered a sheet. Yesterday I had drawn part of the serial but printing it high-quality wasn't easy. I wonder if I could have pulled it off without having to ask a printing office for help. I'll probably need to photo etch some stuff during this build so we'll see then. 



Regarding the serial code on the transmission box I have contacted McLaren Racing. I called them and they provided me with an e-mail address. Within two hours after my e-mail I received an answer by the legendary Mr Neil Trundle, former chief technician of McLaren / Ayrton Senna! I had not expected that and I am deeply in awe...


Mr Trundle says:


That number is the same on all the gearboxes. It is not specific to that box but is the casting number and type. 

So you can leave that number on because Senna’s box would have shown the same.


That issue has therefore been solved. 


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@Simon: I'll probably need the photo etch stuff later during this build. Was thinking of making Calsonic Logo templates, but somebody told me those templates are sold in the USA for $2.00 so I got one of those. I'm sure I'll be tempted into some other photo etching during this build, for example the rear wing holders. 



24. Sometime, somewhere we need to start. That's today, the dynamo. First, drilling holes using a .6mm.-drill. 



25. The drive belt is made out of brass sheet. Scribing a couple of times with a knife, then bending to and forth a couple of times to make the sheet break (clean cut).



26. Folding (pushing / pulling) using a folding knife. 



27. Bend a drive belt around small diameter drill, to be used on dynamo pulley. 



28. Drive wheel-curvature is achieved by means of a punch (punch&die-set). 



29. Bending patiently and carefully until the shape corresponds to the original. 



30. Measuring the distance between the two pulley axles before cutting off the old drive belt. 



31. Using balsa foam as a template: both attachment pins are pushed into the foam. This way I will know the required length of the drive belt. Should the balsa foam give any problems I still have the measured distance, see previous picture.



32. As a replacement dynamo-pulley I used a 'nut on a washer 1,4mm.' by Masterclub (MC435078). Tamiya's nut is too small and doesn't have detail whereas Masterclub's item closely resembles the situation as found on the only reference picture I have of this pulley. 


The drive belt will be airbrushed separately after which pulley and drive wheel will be glued to the drive belt using brown Gator Glue. The lower part, including micro-marriage of the two messing strip ends, will be completely out of sight after finishing the model.  



Spent time: 6 hours (build) + 13 hours (study)

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I've been hording an MP4/6 for 10 years. Lack of skill and the existance of detail sets that one can't get hold of have stiffled the urge to rip the packaging open and start sticking stuff together... Until now.


On the strength of this thread I bought the full detail set (never done resin or photoetch before) today. As the youth of today might say O....M....G what have I done.


Will continue to watch with interest. Worried my org skills will not be up to the standards you have set so far. It would never have occured to me to do anything other than live with warp.


Thanks for the inspiration. Long may it continue. I am going to need it.



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@sharknose156 Thanks! Well that pulley and drive belt will probably be in sight if peeking behind the exhaust manifold. I'll only model those things that might (perhaps theoretically) be seen. 


@SPARKER The more people motivating me in this thread the merrier! Any idea when you're going to start your set? 


@NickD Yes! Top Studio's set is brilliant. Only minor things I've spotted that need correction. In the hands of a capable modeler it will make a beautiful display piece. Please let me know when you'll start your build and I'll definitely push the 'follow' button. If you have not worked with photo etch before it might be a good idea to buy a cheap set somewhere, random model, to practice. Because obviously you wouldn't want to mess up Top Studio's beautiful set. Although I must say that these folks are making it a bit easier for us as the photo etched parts are not attached to their sprues... they were etched 'loose'. In case I can help you with photo etch or resin works just let me know. In general the friendly folks here at Britmodeller will be more than happy to introduce you to these great means of detailing your model.  


33. The dynamo I tried to amend by drilling out, cutting and sawing the holes. It's not easy though and it didn't look even enough. 



34. So I drilled out the inner works, filed it and (from the inside) drilled again. Detail to be replaced was sanded off.



35. Small lengths of Evergreen Rod, three thicknesses, to represent the dynamo's intestines. Glued with brown Gator Glue. 



36. Evergreen strip #100 (0,25mm. x 0,5mm.) cut to length, the ends were sanded in a curve. Placed upon a 4mm. 'punch&die'd' disk made of Evergreen plastic. 




37. Rolled a piece of 0,3mm. thick copper wire in order to straighten the wire (matter of 10 seconds). 



38. Cutting pieces of 2,34mm. length.



39. Getting a bit of brown Gator Glue, rubbing the copper wire in with the stuff and getting most off. It stays sticky. Then patiently push into the designated position. Two pieces at a time. 




Let this dry for half an hour before I can reprise work on this dynamo... time to do some writing on this forum :)



The spent time includes miserably failed attempts.


Spent time: 8 hours (build) + 13 hour (study)

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Some very nice detailing going on here Roy! I'm looking forward to seeing all those AM parts being used.


From memory, the Tamiya article featured the work of Bil Attridge; I know his build has become the reference benchmark for this model (and Andy Matthew's of course!). Bil has a page here that may give you supplementary images to the Tamiya feature:





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Thanks for the support. I'll let you know when I start. It will be interesting to see just how "competent" I am.


Still not sure I would try to rebuild the dynamo, it would require an eyeball upgrade (that the finance director would veto in favour of a new patio).





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@sharknose156 I hope the trouble is worth it, see the last two pictures at the bottom of this post... not much left of this view in the end most probably, but maybe I'm wrong (that wouldn't exactly be rare). Fortunately there's little to scratch as far as I can see, thanks to Top Studio's extensive detailing. As far as I can see now I fully understand as to why they didn't trouble themselves too much on the dynamo. 


@Jnkm13 Thank you but remember, it's larger than it seems, being scale 1/12. 


@Sgt.Squarehead My previous build was out of the box (a 1/24 BMW 507) and still took me 164 hours to complete (I used my own definition 'don't add anything except liquids or powders... so it turned out I spent a lot of time shaping the plastic bits and pieces). So I reckoned, next time I'll just go back to detailing.


And so it turns out as you say, not exactly OOTB this one :D 


@rjfk2002 Thanks, I added all the drawings to make life easier for those who are going to build this kit. By the way (to all concerned): if any translation of my notes on those drawings is required, just ask and I'll write a short explanation and/or translation. 


For me, preparation isn't the most fun but it always provides insights as to which steps to undertake first, what things to add, etc. Some people don't plan and seem to get away with it perfectly, I'm just not that talented so I have to make a plan. Also to get stuff sorted in my head :)


@vontrips Probably after reading some more of your posts, next time I won't have to purchase an aftermarket set like this. I've seen your beautiful work on the Fiat 806 (still haven't finished going through the thread) and it is very inspiring. It even made me consider getting a mini-lathe. Extremely fortunately from a financial point of view, I now have this aftermarket set so I'm in no hurry. But your posts and your results are dangerous reading material for the eager large scale modeler... When I'm ready to purchase a mini lathe I'll go through some of your explanatory posts again so I bookmarked them.


Indeed the Tamiya article regards Bil Attridge's MP4/6. The link you post I had already visited and studied before I received the magazine, very interesting stuff. The Tamiya magazine article text is uncommonly specific and extensive to list all the items Mr Attridge amended and added. 


@NickD My advice on the dynamo is, probably, don't rebuild it if you're a sane and normal person unlike myself. For you I made the last picture of this post in which you can see how much (most probably) remains in sight after putting everything in place. I do advise you to add one bolt + washer. And maybe to replace the drive belt. But all the extra work is probably superfluous. Still I can't be sure until everything is in place, that's why I decided to detail it anyway. 


@Spookytooth Brown Gator Glue (not Gator Grip!) is a glue not made specifically for modeling and I may be the only modeler using it but I love it. It's ideal for tiny parts, as it's sticky from the beginning. Other glues are not, allowing the smallest of parts to move from their designated positions until the glue sets. Disadvantages are long drying time (25 minutes), expansion if used in more than minimal quantities, and very short shelf life (approximately 9 months). How to deal with these matters: while it's drying I post my forum update / use tiny quantities so that it won't expand / get a new bottle every 9 months. Advantages of brown Gator Glue: it glues all kinds of materials, the achieved bond is very strong, it's tacky from the first second, it's great to glue (primed and) painted surfaces together (tested and approved). 



40. Punch-died 1,4mm. hole in a piece of brass sheet.  



41. Centering (watch closely and precisely, check) and punching a 3,5mm. diameter disk.



42. Glueing this disk with brown Gator Glue on the front of the dynamo. Time for dryfit.



43. As said, in the end not much will be seen of the dynamo. Can't say exactly how little but I think approximately what can be seen on the next picture (within the red lines). The rest will remain invisible behind the protection cap. Even the part within the red lines will partly get blocked from view by a support piece.


On the other hand I once learned the hard way that parts seemingly disappearing from sight after final construction, will in fact remain visible be it from another perspective. So my detailing activities are just for security's sake.




The one thing that will definitely remain in sight is the added bolt (the grey thing my index finger points to)  so if any work is to be done on the dynamo it should probably be adding that bolt. 


Spent time: 9 hours (build) + 13 hours (study)


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I`m loving this build ,fantastic start Roy , I`m watching this with great interest as I also have the mp4/6 and full top studio set , the set looks amazing although a little daunting as a lot of the parts are tiny , a quality magnifying glass is a must have .




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@Spookytooth I forgot to mention that the brown Gator Glue's disadvantage of a long drying time can also be seen as an advantage. 


@NickD After I'll have put the engine together I'll make a short vid to see how much will eventually be visible of the stuff behind the exhaust manifolds. 


@caterhamnut Thanks :) Everybody has his own specific methods and maybe you've seen or will see something new, notwithstanding your great BT52B build. 


@CrazyCrank I'm delighted you are following this build!


@Red 5 A magnifying glass could work for some modelers I suppose... personally I can't seem to get used to it and I much prefer an Optivisor. Cheap and works perfectly!



44. Further preparations for priming the engine: removing some moulded bolts.



45. The supports for the rear wheel suspension are screwed into the block (eventually the screw will be totally out of sight) and, for the sake of security, glued (brown Gator Glue).



46. The oil pump-subassembly's moulding lines are removed (knives, sanding stick, files, sanding paper, sanding grip, glass fiber pen).



47. Tamiya invented a support for the exhaust manifolds. As it doesn't exist 1/1, I've removed it (both sides).



48. Extremely carefully the following part is heated (better to use a hair dryer) and bent slightly. 



49. The next hose was moulded too short and will be replaced by a bit of Evergreen rod.



50. A cool hose-end is scratched. Tamiya forgot to include it. It's a piece of Evergreen Rod, shaped into an S, put into a pre-drilled hole in the engine block. 



51. The oil pump is attached to the block in two spots. Tamiya only moulded one of both. I simply cut to length a piece of Evergreen Rod, upon which a bolt will be glued later. 



52. Top Studio's heads can be improved slightly: two out of thirteen torx-bolts need to be positioned in deeper recesses. I simply slized off the resin.  



53. The Honda logo (consisting of two photo etch parts) is glued on the head (brown Gator Glue). The long trim to the left and the short trim to the right of the logo will be put in place after painting. After painting, first the logo will be 'scraped clean' using a knife, so that the metal will reappear... or that's the theory anyway. 


The left side of the engine block is now ready for priming.

Spent time: 12.5 hours (build) + 13 hours (study)

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