The Old Weird Herald

 

Proxy Race 2

Production Class Prospects

by Bob Ward

Photos by Kris Kassens

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The second Fantasy World / OWH / Daytona West Proxy Race, to be held in October and November, 1999, presents some new challenges to builders. The Production class chassis rules are virtually the same as the rules for the NASCAR class in Proxy I, but the body rules allow much more room for creativity. You can flare the fenders, put spoilers and airdams at the front and rear and generally create the more aggressive profiles of road racing cars.

There are many 1/32 scale model kits available for use in your car building project. Monogram has made a number of them over the years and most can still be found at low prices with a little digging. Lindberg recently offered a Corvette and a Porsche that fit the class rules perfectly. And then there are the current European slot car bodies, such as the Fly Dodge Viper, several companies' Ferrari F40s, and Proslot's excellent Porsche 911 GT2.

Because the racing classes being modeled are less familiar to many entrants than the NASCAR Winston Cup cars, we thought it would be a good idea to do a few "example" cars and let everyone see them to get a better idea of the kinds of things that are possible under the Production class rules.

The three cars presented here are all made from Monogram kits. We really like the Monogram snap kits because they are plentiful, inexpensive, and easy to modify. They have one-piece bodies, which makes them relatively sturdy for racing conversions.

One of the chassis is an easy modification of the classic Monogram brass 1/32 scale frame from the 60s. The other two are built from brass and wire off the K&S rack, along with some miscellaneous motor brackets we had lying around. Their design used the "lead sled"-type cars of Proxy I as a starting point, but it goes on from there to give the chassis more flex and "tuneability" without excessive complexity.

The wheels and tires are all JK 1/24 scale stock car tires that have been narrowed and in some cases turned down to fit the 1/32 scale cars. These tires, along with similar ones from Pro Track, are excellent "scale" tires for 1/32 cars. They come in appropriate diameters and the wheels are large enough to accept a detailed platic insert for realistic appearance. If you don't want to use inserts the drilled centers have more character than plain aluminum discs.

All three cars use common 1/8" axles, gears, guide, braid, and other parts available from any raceway. The construction of chassis like these should be within reach of just about any basement racer with a moto tool and a soldering iron.

Now that we have them all to at least the primer stage and have had a chance to test them all and make sure they work on the track, we thought this would be a good time to show you what we're doing.

'79 Greenwood Vette
This car has a Monogram #1016 1979 Corvette body reworked with Greenwood-style fender flares on the front and bubble flares on the rear to cover the tires out to 2 1/2". Additional body modifications include reworking the nose to incorporate a full-width airdam and adding an enlarged spoiler at the rear. This car looks like many cars that raced in TransAm, IMSA GTO, and SCCA amateur racing in the 70s and 80s and can still be seen in vintage races today.
A side view of the car shows the brass side pipes, which are soldered directly to the chassis. A Corvette race car just wouldn't be a Corvette race car without a good set of side pipes, right?
Vette - Side View
Vette Bottom View
The Corvette's chassis is a Monogram adjustable brass unit from the 60s with a pan assembly of .063" brass added. The side pipes are soldered to the edges of the pans. The bottom of the chassis is covered in self-stick lead to get weight down low and forward for proper balance and handling. The original mounting points for the motor and front and rear axles are used. If you look closely you can see where the front of the body has been liberally reinforced with epoxy.
The Corvette's body and chassis. The original Monogram chassis is used almost intact and could be restored to its original 1960s form except for new .063" guide tongue that replaced the original. The chassis leaves plenty of room for wide JK wheels and tires at both ends. This shot also shows the extent to which the fenders have been extended using sheet styrene and body putty. You could do a simpler version of this car with bubble flares front and rear.
Vette Body & Chassis
Another Bottom & Top Shot
Another view of the 'Vette body and chassis. This shows clearly the side pipes soldered to the edges of the pan assembly. The pipes will be painted when the final finishing of the car is completed.
Our 69 Camaro has the longest wheelbase of the three cars at 3.325". This car has a solid front axle. The JK front wheels, originally designed to free-wheel on an axle, have been modified with set-screw hubs. The 69's chassis plate was cut from a single piece of 2" wide .063" brass. The body is from a Monogram #1032 snap kit. It and the Corvette were actually built as static models over 10 years ago and only recently converted to slot cars.
69 Camaro Body & Chassis
69 Camaro Belly
The 69 Camaro's chassis follows classic "basement racer" construction techniques. Wire and brass strip construction with brass motor bracket.
The chassis of the 1990 Camaro. This one is made of steel wire and brass strip with an old 60s-era rear axle bracket. Note how chassis extends up into nose to add weight forward to balance motor. The gear is a 27-tooth Parma King Crown.
90 Camaro Belly
90 Camaro
"Tube frame" Camaro, as seen in the TransAm and IMSA GTO around 1990. This body was made from parts of 2 Monogram #2004 1981 Camaro kits. The body is widened to 2 1/2" and the wheel openings are radiused and subtly flared. The hood hump, front airdam and rear spoiler are made from sheet styrene.
This shot of the right side of the 1990 Camaro shows how all the elements of the bodywork have been blended smoothly together. It takes a lot of puttying and sanding, but the result is a car that really looks the part of a modern TransAm car.
90 Camaro - Side View
90 Camaro Body & Chassis
The 1990 Camaro's body and chassis. The split front axle tube is braced fore and aft. The front stub axles are kingpins from an Associated R/C car. Note foam rubber padding on the body mounting points. The body floats on its mounts and the rubber absorbs noise and vibration.

 

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