24-Hour Model Car Build Challenge

The finished build

The finished build

A fun and exciting way to challenge your model car building skills

Each January, Gary Kulchock, a talented modeller from the North Central West Virginia Scale Modelers club, organizes a 24-hour model car build to coincide with the running of the 24 hours of Daytona race in Florida. This year, the 24 Hour Model Car Build Challenge will take place on January 26-27 starting at noon EST. This challenge is an excellent way to challenge yourself and complete a model at the beginning of the year. Because of the limited time frame, the idea of building a kit in 24 consecutive hours is both challenging and limiting; done is better than perfect and one cannot give in to the temptation to super detail everything and fix every problem one may encounter.

Modelling can be a solitary endeavour at the best of times, and even though some groups of modellers get together physically, many people participate in this challenge via the internet. There is something reassuring and encouraging when you post a picture of your work in progress at 4 am and several other modellers respond with words of encouragement as we are all in the same situation.

Gary used to post this challenge on the Hobby Heaven message board but has moved over to a private group on Facebook. While Facebook is undoubtedly a divisive platform, this supportive group is a great place to post pictures and discuss your progress amongst other enthusiastic modellers.

I have participated in this annual build since 2008 (at least, that was the first photo album that I labelled as part of the challenge), though this year is the 13th annual build.

In 2018 I chose to build a Lancia 037 Martini rally racing kit from Hasegawa. This kit checked off all of the things I looked for - a simple paint job, good fitting kit design, exciting subject matter and enough of a challenge to keep me awake in the early hours of the morning. I completed the kits with less than half an hour to spare (with only about a 45-minute nap to allow a second wind). Not all details were flushed out, but enough that I was proud of the build without having to go back and fix things later.

The following pictures and descriptions highlight my journey through the build. If you can make the time, I highly recommend the experience. If for no other reason than you will have a decent box-stock build completed by the end of January!

Starting on the interior while the body was in the dehydrator

Starting on the interior while the body was in the dehydrator

The interior roll cage is starting to come together

The interior roll cage is starting to come together

Out of the dryer and some challenging details added

Out of the dryer and some challenging details added

A mock up of the body - starting to look good.

A mock up of the body - starting to look good.

The interior is taking shape

The interior is taking shape

A rear view of the interior detailing

A rear view of the interior detailing

Time for a few added detailing steps

Time for a few added detailing steps

Brakes added

Brakes added

Seat details

Seat details

Ready for assembly

Ready for assembly

Up on wheels.  Looks good for 24 hours

Up on wheels. Looks good for 24 hours

The back shot

The back shot

The stance looks good to me.

The stance looks good to me.