Auto Art – Crafted Wooden Cars & Truck Models.

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Recently, I had the pleasure of watching local Menshed woodworkers create handcrafted wooden model cars and trucks. The expertise and patience it takes to create such projects is astonishing . Each piece has to be cut perfectly to fit perfectly into each other. Very tricky wood crafting skills indeed.

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Before we discussed the skill and procedure of making these beautiful works of art, a summary and explanation of how this hobby started is presented below.

History of Model Cars

Collecting and building model vehicles is a hobby that transcends age and gender. Collectors and builders range in age from octogenarians to preteens. The modeling of automobiles started as a promotional notion to help producers to promote their cars. Model automobile scaling runs the gamut from small adequate to match in your hand to double the size of a manufacturing vehicle.

A variety of materials have been used in the introduction of models over time, although plastic and die-cast zinc are the materials most regularly used today. Wooden handcrafted modern grew in popularity at the same time.

The first models had been duplicates of manufacturing automobiles and originated in Europe, quickly accompanied by way of American makers. These models weren’t built as toys or for collectors, though. Models have been ordinarily built for promotional functions back then.

In the late 1920’s, automakers began to create models of the cars they were producing. This is due to the fact making a scale mannequin of an automobile allowed them to easily visualize sketch elements of the vehicles, in a way that they may or may now not determine to put into production. It was once round this time that a wide variety of automakers began focusing on modern ways to market their cars,too. French automaker Citroen was once one of the first to do this, in 1923. These models were finely crafted out of a range of materials. For instance, Studebaker used wood to make a double-size reproduction of a cabriolet that used to be put on show in front of the organization headquarters.

Studebaker by Heirloom Toys 1928

Modeling was also a way for automakers and their suppliers to find new format talent. For instance, between 1930 and 1968, the Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild Competition used to be run by using General Motors. This model-creating competition drew lots of opponents each and every year. Winners were given scholarships to learn about vehicle format concepts.

In 1932, the Hudson Motor Car Company produced 12 1:4 scale precision model of its 1932 automobiles for the New York Auto Show that had been made out of the same materials that had been used in the considerable manufacturing vehicles. It wasn’t lengthy before automakers realized that model automobiles should be used to appeal to the next generation of buyers, for the reason that the models had been small enough for kids to play with while their dad and mom perused a dealership’s selection.

car model
Automobile model. Fisher Body Craftsman’s Guild Model Car, 1957. 1987.0449.01.


Building model cars or truck as an interest started out at some stage in the World War II era, when Ace and Berkeley started out producing wooden scale models. The first plastic car model was the Maxwell kit from Revell. It got here out in the late Nineteen Forties and was once little greater than an unassembled pull toy. The first proper plastic mannequin auto package was a 1932 Ford Roadster and used to be created by way of an Englishman via the title of Derek Brand. Brand was once recognized for his 1:32 scale model kits.

These grew to be so popular that they were soon exported to the United States and allotted by using Revell. However, Brand was once also partly accountable for a drop in the recognition of the plastic mannequin car package hobby. By the mid-1960s, Brand had moved over to Aurora, where he commenced working on HO scale electric powered model vehicles that grew to become each kid’s favored toy: the Aurora A/FX slot vehicle set. The introduction of video games endured the downfall of the recognition of model kits. Thankfully, Monogram helped fire a resurgence of the hobby in the late 1980s with their NASCAR duplicate series. Aluminum Metal Toys (AMT) also came out with a very popular 1966 Chevy Nova model in 1988 that helped to buoy the industry. There are tips for scaling down original plans however there are some ready made instructions available on the market now saving you from reinventing the wheel.


In the early days both brass or lead were used, as these are effortless to work with. Some products were made using the real materials that the manufacturing car will be made out of, though car-makers sculpted wooden and clay when making their concept models. Today’s die-cast models are normally made from zinc alloy or pressed steel.

As mentioned above, the model car “kit” hobby began in the post World War II era with Ace and Berkeley wooden model cars. Wooden model car and truck kits are still available. The kit building hobby became popular through the 1950s, while the collecting of miniatures by adults started to pick up momentum around 1970. Precision-detailed miniatures made specifically for adults are a significant part of the market since the mid-1980s. Woodworkers designing from scratch, have been equally interested to pursuing their collection but doing it by handcrafting it themselves.

Please press CLICK here if and it will take you to Etsy if you wish to purchase and try out a ready-made KIT to create a wood car models or truck model. You can make it from scratch but if you are a beginner a kit will be simpler.



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