2016 Ford GTLM – 24 Hours of Le Mans GTE Pro Winner: Model Gallery

This is a Gallery Post of my 1/24 Scale model of the 2016 Le Mans GTE Pro class winning Ford GTLM, celebrating 50 Years since Ford won Le Mans outright in 1966 with the GT40. See my post on the model project here if you want more information on the build. This post is timed to post at 9:00am Eastern/3:00pm Central European Summer Time, when the virtual 24 Hours of Le Mans is starting, instead of the actual race which has been rescheduled to September 19/20, 2020.

All the pictures below are the same angle in “Day” and “Night”, to show off the LED lighting I installed in the kit.

That’s No Train Part 4!!!

I am at my heart, a model railroader, but I enjoy doing other things in the world of model building, and I grew up building plastic kits of cars, airplanes, and ships. Most of the kits I built as a kid into my teenage and university years are long gone, aged by poor construction, moving repeatedly, or lack of space/interest in keeping them, but they filled a purpose in building model making skills I still use today. This post, is about my latest not a train project, a model of the 2016 Ford GTLM Race car which won its class at the Le Mans 24 Hours, 50 years after the original Ford GT40 first won Le Mans for Ford. This is my second GTLM/GTE style model I’ve built after my 2016 Daytona 24 Hours winning Corvette C7.R.

I didn’t make it out to my local race at Mosport in 2016, so these pictures are of the 2017 GTLM, slightly different paint scheme and some modifications to the car’s appearance, but it gives a sense of what I am seeking to achieve.

This will be a photo heavy post of what I did. I generally built the kit as per the Revell instructions, but I made improvements here and there. I added after market parts from Decalcas (for the diffuser, fuel fillers, and air jack, the kit had tires and windshield wipers, nutthe resin parts in mine were not well cast, so I didn’t use them); Zero Paints for the 2016 Colours; decals from Le Mans Decals to get the correct 2016 logos and graphics; LED lights from Evan Designs; and, a driver figure from GF Models. Unlike my previous Corvette where I had to build the difusser, the resin replacement was a breeze to do once the clunky kit one was cut off.

First things first, get rid of the hideous diffuser in the plastic kit floor, and replace it with a much finer looking resin one. The diffuser is a pretty obvious part of the car, and the Revel kit one was just lumpy and ugly. Even unpainted the resin replacement looks more authentic to my eye.
Adding a resin driver figure from GF Models. Getting the fit in the body, and painting miniature Dirk Mueller/fitting him into the model. I am a firm believer that if you are going to build a model of a race car, and have it look like its doing something other than sitting there, it needs to have a driver figure. It always made me crazy as a kid getting race car kits that didn’t have drivers in them!
Primer Phase, getting primer on and sanded clean to provide a good base for the actual paint. For this I used Tamiya Fine Surface primer in a rattle can.
Painting Phase. Using Zero Paints for the first time. Other than their being significantly more chemically smelling and needing a potent lacquer cleaner after use unlike the acrylics I normally airbrush, I had no problems with this paint, and really loved how well they sprayed and settled.
Decalling in Process. To get the correct 2016 livery, I sourced decals from Le Mans Models who makes sportscar racing decals. Other than a couple of decals I screwed up (their decals are super thin), I used the decals from their set on the exterior. Fortunately, the decals from the Revell sheet were similar enough for any I screwed up it didn’t matter. Some of the logos like the “Powered by Ecoboost” were completely different between the 2016 car I modelled and the 2017 decals in the kit.
The base is a 12″x12″ birch ply panel, with curbs made from air dry clay and painted. The rubber track weathering in pan pastel powders, then sealed with a flay fixative spray.
Working on wiring the LEDs into the model. The brake lights, rear channel lights (a purely decorative bit of lighting on the GTLM), position light (1 for first) and headlights were lit. I’d have liked the headlights and position light to be brighter, but they are visible when the lights are out, and overall I am pleased. The lights were held into place as were the wires with Bondic, a UV cured resin material that I’ve written about before, and its a life-saver for wiring jobs.

A taster of the finished model is below, a full Gallery Post of the finished Project is available here.

Sorting out some Small Part Storage

I am a bit of an organizer, I like to keep all my projects, parts, supplies and work bench organized. Some things I have been doing for organization are working, some things are not. One of the things that wasn’t was my organization of small parts you go through a lot of building freight cars, like grab irons and screws. I found a variety of options for little screw top containers on Amazon, so I bought one to see if I liked it (a $10 investment tacked onto an Amazon order isn’t a big deal). I really liked the little screw top containers I chose, and they came with a little clear plastic box to keep the 12 individual jars together, so I bought a 2nd. Then, I realized that wasn’t enough storage, so I bought two more and now Amazon Canada seems to be sold out! (sorry, I won’t bother linking as they are out of stock).

All in all, I am really happy with these, two are full, one is half full, and one is empty for future re-organization and expansion of my small part storage. Each tub is labelled with sharpie on the top of the jar, I tested, it will wipe off (despite Sharpie supposedly being permanent!), so I should be able to relabel them in the future.

Shot of one of the organizers after it arrived from amazon, easier to see the 12 tubs inside the bigger tub in this picture.

There are a mountain of listings marketed as cosmetic pots or bead containers or similar on Amazon if you too are looking for something to boost your small part organization. These are now a lot easier to get at rather than having to drag out the big container of detail parts they used to be stored in in the cupboard, as they can now stay in a corner of the work space out of the way and readily accessible.

Quick Layout Progress/Status Update

I just wanted to write a quick update. I’m fine and working away on the layout or layout related projects, and even some projects that have nothing at all to do with trains. I just haven’t been sitting down to write about it. I’ve still been taking pictures, and hopefully at some point will catch up, but I just haven’t had the motivation to spend more time on the computer at home at my workbench after spending my whole work day here. I’ve been motivated to use the workbench time doing what it was meant for, making models. I realized my last few posts have mostly been Tuesday Train railfan shots, and I’ve lined up those until the end of June as I’m not out railfanning at the moment (but I’ve found some great stuff in boxes of old pictures I’ve now scanned to make up for that!).

I hope those who read my blog are well, and are finding ways to keep busy with whatever lets you unwind as we continue in varying degrees of lockdown to hopefully stay healthy and safe.

As proof of progress, a couple of pictures below of the resin cast manhole and storm drain covers being painted. The first of these are now installed in the roads on the layout, and I’ve got enough pre-painted to do all the roads, so I just need to find a night to get motivated and start the next chunk of road paving!

Resin cast manhole and storm drain covers taped down to a sheet of cardboard to be pre-shaded before installing in the roads.

Every now and then…

You write something believing it to be the truth, only to find your memory really really sucks.

In a recent post, I said:

I’ve been using a modified technique for ballasting, based on something I learned from my friend Trevor Marshall, and using thinned Weldbond Glue (why in 20 years of modelling has no one ever told me how much better this is than normal white glue before now!!).

Then, I was searching for a photograph of something else in a box of pictures, and came across a photo of my old “layout” from my high school and early university days. I don’t know the exact date, just that it’s pre May-2000 as that’s when I moved out of the house for the first time to move to Toronto for a Co-op Placement, and my parents moved out of the house and this layout was torn down for good while I was working in Toronto that summer.

WaterlooLayoutWould you look at that, a bottle of Weldbond on the end of the layout next to my workbench…

So yeah, turns out I just have no clue what I have and haven’t done! Also, yeah, I have no idea what this layout was trying to do at the time! Other than the Lima Class 156, Hornby HST, Tri-ang 2-6-2T at the front, and Tri-ang Transcontinental coaches by the Weldbond, everything in this picture is gone from my collection.

In the interest of fairness, this photograph is of the peninsula extension of my first layout, a 4×8 plywood pacific seen below that served from around 1989-2000 and from Chatham Ontario to Dartmouth Nova Scotia and back to Waterloo Ontario.

The Plywood Pacific in earlier guises in Chatham and Waterloo, love that chandelier layout lighting I had! I’m pretty sure it had a circular fluorescent tube in it!

Its always nice to look back a little, which is what I was doing when I found the first picture today and had that “huh, I have used Weldbond before? Who knew?” moment!

A new Task Lamp for the Workbench

IMG_2288New task lamp ready for unboxing and setting up

At the beginning of February we got together at my friend Hunter Hughson’s, and I was admiring his LED task lamp on his workbench. During Train Night In Canada last week, I was asking him about it and if he liked it. He reported that he loved it, so that was enough to sell me on buying one to try. Generally I’m happy with my workbench, except for the fact that I don’t have light shining at my work, its shining at me. This isn’t something I can easily fix, but a fixture like this that has super solid joints, and bright LED’s is perfect, as it can sit beside me and shine light on what I’m working on instead of in my face.

New light out of the box on my workbench, and set up in at least the first place I’m going to have it sit.

The light is touch on and off, which is great as it means it won’t get marked up by paint and glue if I’ve got any on my fingers. It also has three colour temperatures and can be dimmed/brightened on each setting. The lamp is by Tensor (there only seems to be a website for their parent company, not them individually), I bought it through Amazon, I don’t know if its available from others. As I write, Amazon.ca shows one left in stock. The model number on the box is 20276-002 if you are google searching for it.

So far, I’m quite happy with it. My workbench isn’t bad in the daytime because of the skylight, but at night, the current room lighting is garbage, and when I replace that with layout lighting, it won’t necessarily help the workbench, so this was an affordable approach to get some more light easily that I can direct where I want. It’s also helping with workbench photography as now I can get light from behind the camera instead of in front of it!