Uncertain T

Built by: Jim Ervin [Canada]

My Uncertain T model began with just the front half of the body, as a gift from my friend Charlie Cowley, a great builder of 1/8 scale rods.

Most of the interior parts , engine, grille shell, headlights and wheels and tires came from my own collection. Then another friend, Ron Martin, loaned me his partially built Uncertain T so that I could scratch build the other parts, using his model as a guide.

The headers for the engine came first and this involved making lots of omellets before I could make an egg. I finally went with aluminum tubing and a plastic header plate The key at the back was another trial and error process. I didnít like plastic because I couldnít Bare Metal foil it. In retrospect, maybe I could have used Al Clad Chrome paint on it or just a good silver paint. Instead I scratch built the key from solder and polished it, It still doesnít look like chrome, really, but it was a challenge and I had to try.

The frame was a real challenge. Building it was easy enough but when I drilled it at the front for the scratch built headlight stands, it broke apart at the front corners, 3 times. Finally I got a little bit smart and inserted the stands into plastic tubeing and glued the tubeing to the inside corners .The headers and front axle were airbrushed with Al Clad. My extensive fitting of these parts caused wear marks on the Al Clad. This was resprayed and covered with clear Future Floor Polish to prevent more wear marks.

Just to be different, I turned the front wheels to the right, since they were originally turned to the left on the model. Then there was the little matter of the back half of the body. At first I scratch built it but it wasnít quite right. The finished product is the result of another friend, Doug Spencer, who resin cast it, using Ronís original as a mold. Other problems with the body included one side post and a door section which broke out because the plastic was so brittle.

The final paint job is the result of several coats of Testors Orange Laquer over a gold underbase and clear coated. I was at first quite disturbed to see that inserting the interior caused a crack to open on the driverís side of the body. It was mostly hidden behind the racing slick but was visible in my first photos. It took a lot of determination and was a tough decision but I decided to remove the body, fix the crack and repaint everything. The results, I think are an even better representation of the original colour of the Uncertain T.

Ordinarily, I would have been too discouraged to finish a project such as this which involved so much scratch building. But in this case I persisted since I originally seen the Uncertain T when it came to the Pacific Motorama Car Show in Vancouver, B.C. in April of 1965. I even met Steve Scott when he was setting up his display and took one black & white photo of the car. A copy of that photo is now in the frame behind my model on a display base which I also scratch built, using Ronís original as a guide. Ron had most of the chrome parts of the trophy as extras. So I traded with him to acquire those and scratch built the platforms.

The only thing missing is the girl for the display. Now if only Steve could get the original car (which I hear he still has) back on the show circuit.



Show Rod Rally Home Page | Gallery List