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Spiny

Countach - Another Italian Wedge

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Having completed the Stratos is pretty quick time (for me at least), it's time to move on to the next project.

 

This time, it's the turn of the Lamborghini Countach, which I picked up a couple of years ago. I had a read around before buying this kit, and Aoshima's Countaches generally seemed to get the best reviews. Having bought the kit, I can see why - even sitting loose in the box it looks great.

 

First reaction on opening the box though was that not only did it look good, but also a little bit daunting as there are a lot of sprues which suggests lots of parts. I think it's only a similar quantity to the Trabant, so maybe not that scary.

 

Work on this actually started way back in June with spraying all the chassis and bits which need to have the same finish as it, alongside the body and all the body coloured items. No pics of the chassis work in progress (just Halfords grey primer then satin black), so I'll go straight onto the body.

 

Not only is the body crisply moulded, but there are also minimal mould lines and I only found a couple of sink marks on the rear deck above and to the side of the tail lights. Needless to say, they have been filled prior to priming.

 

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And with the filler sanded down.

 

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Aoshima do seem to have been very conscious of those thin A- and B-pillars, so plenty of bracing to be cut out prior to construction, but much better that than snapped or bent pillars. Even better, a solid part is provided for where the windscreen belongs to help protect that delicate A-pillar prior to the glass going in. You remove the windscreen brace first, fit the solid windscreen to provide strength, then remove the rest of the bracing. This is where it ended up after the primer had gone on.

 

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After that, it was a case of adding the colour coat. The Countach isn't a car which needs a bright colour to stand out, but I remember a bright orange Matchbox Countach I had when I was about four, so that was the obvious colour.

 

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I fully appreciate that in that photo it looks like I've peeled an orange and glued it to the body, but after it got a clear coat it does look much better. Currently it's part polished, so is a bit of a work in progress. I taped the sills on from behind for spraying, they're sitting in a box now and will get properly fitted in due course.

 

This weekend is really where I'm starting the build proper. Tomorrow I should be able to provide a small update :)

 

 

 

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I had one in yellow, I loved it. Great car. 

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23 hours ago, JeroenS said:

I had one in yellow, I loved it. Great car. 

I presume you mean the Matchbox version? If not, I am profoundly jealous!

5 hours ago, dbostream said:

I like the color choice, look forward to seeing it clear coated.

Thanks, this is where it sits at the moment. The clearcoat is on, the panel lines and grilles have been washed (I can't remember whether in black or dark grey) and some bits (roof, front wings) have had the Micromesh treatment.

 

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No work on the body this weekend as I made a start on the build proper. Unusually, this one doesn't start with the engine, but instead with the front wheel hubs. So, following the instructions I got the brake calipers carefully painted ready for decalling and detailing.

 

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Oh bugger! misread the isntructions :( Turns out the calipers should be something resembling steel with black bolts and not the other way around. Fortunately, I caught it in time and repaint the calipers before any harm was done. I do have to say too that I do like the 'chrome' on this one, not that bright which gives a very good metal look. It would be no use if you were using it for a '50s American car, but here it works very well. With the bolts painted and decals applied, I finally got these looking something like they should do.

 

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Once the glue on these had dried, I was able to fit them into the chassis. That was another bit I'd painted earlier in the year as was the subframe, so it was only the steering arm and upper subframe which needed work now. The spraying of the subframe meant I had to get out the pin vice to open the holes back to where they were, but the hubs fitted fine otherwise. Placing the steering arm was fiddly as you have to thread it though a gap then fit to the hubs, but eventually clicked it into place - I have working steering now, just not much else.

 

49117967536_38f1de333e_c.jpg

 

And with that, I'm bang up to date. Thanks for looking.

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9 hours ago, Spiny said:

I presume you mean the Matchbox version? If not, I am profoundly jealous!

Uhm, yes, definitely the Matchbox version! As for the full scale version, I'll just quote Jeremy Clarkson: "the Countach is like an elephant; nice to look at, but you wouldn't want to own one" 🙂 

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That's what I've heard too - Ferrari's are built to drive and Lamborghinis to look good on small boys' bedroom walls.

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Almost frustratingly slow progress this weekend has seen me do no more than the front springs and wheels... and they're not even fitted to the car yet.

 

The springs were what did for me. The instructions would have you do gloss black for the springs, and red for the damper element. But it seems that I'd overthinned the red so it took four coats to get a good coverage there. Add that into that I've never seen a suspension set with a shiny dust cover, so painted the bits between the springs in matt black - it looks better but added to the time taken. Of course, once it's fitted it'll be tucked away so you can barely see it :fraidnot:

 

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As for the wheels, the instructions tell you to "paint pH8 [silver] thinly to make more realistic". Personally, I think the wheels are pretty close to spot-on finish wise as they are and would only be made worse by me daubing silver paint on them, so I've left them as they are. To give an idea of how muich thought Aoshima have put into this kit, that shiny centre boss is shiny becuase Aoshima put it on a separate sprue which is finished in shiny chrome rather than slightly dulled chrome. The only painting which is on those wheels is the wheel nuts which I've done in aluminium. All that's left is to add a couple of decals to each one, but that won't happen until I've got them onto the body. The tyres are also excellent - I presume there must be a join in the mould but I genuinely can't see it and these are exactly as they came out of the box with no rubbing down at all.

 

Like I said, not much progress this week - that one photo is all I've got done. Here's hoping for better progress soon.

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Slow progress is still progress 🙂

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20 hours ago, Spiny said:

 

As for the wheels, the instructions tell you to "paint pH8 [silver] thinly to make more realistic"

IMO you've made the correct choice.  They look very nice as is!

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3 hours ago, JCH said:

IMO you've made the correct choice.  They look very nice as is!

Thank you, and glad you agree with me. I have to say that this kit has the best chrome of any kit I've done so far - no stripping and repainting planned here!

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That is one bold colour choice but definitely suits the car.  Love these old boxy, angular type car bodies. I look forward to seeing this progress.

 

Coops

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Looking good so far!  That orange does look good on Lamborghinis of this era.

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Thanks everyone, I'm pleased the orange is finding favour. With something like the Countach, I think it needs to be a bold colour as it's all about in-your-face standing out from the crowd - an Audi grey just wouldn't work.😁

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28 minutes ago, Spiny said:

. With something like the Countach, I think it needs to be a bold colour as it's all about in-your-face standing out from the crowd - an Audi grey just wouldn't work.😁

I heartily agree with your color choice my friend, I take exception to your statement however.

At 130 MPH I find nothing wrong with Gray. :devil:

4v-2.jpg

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21 hours ago, Codger said:

I heartily agree with your color choice my friend, I take exception to your statement however.

At 130 MPH I find nothing wrong with Gray. :devil:

4v-2.jpg

OK, I concede! That's pretty strong evidence that I was wrong.

 

In truth, it was said a little tongue in cheek as sitting on my driveway is a grey version of another car best known for being bright orange (Focus ST) :)

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My thoughts are whilst that grey looks great on a late model Countach with the wing and flares, I reckon the brighter '70s colours such as orange, yellow, mid blue and line green really suit the simpler, unadorned versions much better.

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1 hour ago, Paul H said:

My thoughts are whilst that grey looks great on a late model Countach with the wing and flares, I reckon the brighter '70s colours such as orange, yellow, mid blue and line green really suit the simpler, unadorned versions much better.

Well if you're an immature scoundrel like I am, that '70's shape looks fab in virtually any color or configuration - even GREEN. I only turn up my nose at the rubber bumper and Anniversary cars.

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8 hours ago, Paul H said:

My thoughts are whilst that grey looks great on a late model Countach with the wing and flares, I reckon the brighter '70s colours such as orange, yellow, mid blue and line green really suit the simpler, unadorned versions much better.

May I present you... Simon Kidston's Viola Countach Periscopio. An absolutely fantastic colour, I would pick this colour if I managed to get my hands on Aoshima's kit.spacer.png

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Codger, looking at the detailing, is that a very early one?  That is such a period correct green 😎  I can easily imagine one that colour on Lamborghini's stand at a motorshow.

 

Tyas - not seen purple on a Countach before, and that does looks smart.  The '70s was a great decade for distinctive car colours! 🙂

 

 

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2 hours ago, Paul H said:

Codger, looking at the detailing, is that a very early one?  That is such a period correct green 😎  I can easily imagine one that colour on Lamborghini's stand at a motorshow.

 

Tyas - not seen purple on a Countach before, and that does looks smart.  The '70s was a great decade for distinctive car colours! 🙂

 

 

Yes Paul it's a Periscopo. I never saw the bright window trim before however. These days you can't know which is original or done during restoration.

It's just a timeless look (rare for the '70's) photographed from a great angle. I much prefer it to what's coming out of McLaren, Ferrari and the other hypercar builders.

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To the best of my knowledge, the original Countach had the black window surrounds as you say - I guess the chrome is part of the restoration project. As for the choice of colours originally, the kit instructions give yellow, orange, green and red so at least those are valid choices. But, given that the first owners had shelled out for a bit V12 in the depths of an oil crisis I doubt money was an overriding concern so I'd fully expect cars to be sold in whatever colour the owner wanted if (s)he paid enough.

 

As for my particular version, I got the springs put into place over the weekend. Not the easiest thing to see where you're putting the end, even with lots of light and magnification, but I got it in.

 

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Unfortunately, that's about all you'll see of the springs. As the next picture shows, with the wheel in place the springs are all but hidden. (At least I'll know they're there!)

 

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After the front suspension was completed, it was onto the transmission. The finish on the gearbox is pretty much the same as on the wheels, and I felt it was just too shiny for underneath the car. So I've gone over it with a dark grey wash and am very pleased with how this turned out, it's the first time I've done an overall wash on chrome rather than trying to black out the gaps in grilles and it does seem to have added some definition to the shape too.

 

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After that, it's onto the rear suspension. Unfortunately, I'm still only halfway through getting the brakes sorted, so (apart from the sub-frame in the background of the shot above) no pics this week on those.

 

Thanks for watching.

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I have a home-brew wash made up of Humbrol Matt Black and Humbrol Gloss Brown highly diluted in enamel thinners.

I produces quite a good subdued effect on engines and transmissions. 

 

P.S. I couldn't tell you the ratios of anything, but I don't think it matters too much, It's kind of a 'grubby' tone.

 

Cheers, Alan.

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I know the tires are period correct (and the wheels are outstanding), but they crack me up as they look like donuts!  How tire technology has changed.  Work looks great please continue posting.

 

content.homenetiol.com_2001243_2130496_0

 

P.S. White looks good too!

 

Edited by JCH

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