After I reworked my ’71 ‘Cuda I started to take a look at some of the other kits. The main premise of the rework on the ‘Cuda was to add detail to the chassis and engine bay. The body of this GTX was well done but everything else was rushed and minimally detailed. The scope of this rework includes cleaning the seams on the engine and painting it, adding detail to the interior, painting the chassis and engine compartment body color and lowering the suspension.
The ride height in front was corrected by cutting the wheel stud and reattaching them higher. The rest of the project involves a lot of masking and paint.
I had seen another Mopar built that used a set of Pegasus wheels and liked the look. It gives it the pro touring look! After I corrected the ride height in front, I worked in a set. The only modification I had to do was to grind away material on the chassis pan. Other than that, the wheels fit perfectly.
The rest of the project was fairly straight forward. I primed and painted the body colored components. I separated the exhaust from the rear axle to make them easier to paint and add realism. The engine was messaged to repair the heavy seams and sink marks. I decided to try and paint the wood grain in the interior. I did everything except for the instrument cluster. Later I realized that I could have easily done the work but I’m still very pleased with the results. The exhaust was finished by using aluminum tubing. I used two sized to help me attach large tips to the standard exhaust.
I finished this project earlier in the year but forgot to strip the air cleaner and paint it. After a several month break from building, I was able to paint the air cleaner and officially finish the project. The end result is a mean looking GTX!
Originally Completed: 2001
Rework Completed: 2014
The front sits entirely too high.
I lowered my ’71 ‘Cuda by grinding away the k-member and chassis. I used a trick I read about to lower the front. I hacked off the wheel stud and glued it higher.
The stance is much better and looking great with the Pegasus wheels.
Primer for the underside of the model.
The engine wasn’t bad, but definitely from a time when I was being lazy. The exhaust was painted black.
The engine bay is also being pained body color.
The wheels were a little “too” chromed. Metallic gray took care of that problem.
I really like the way this is turning out.
I hacked the exhaust off of the rear axle. Not only does this allow for more accurate painting, but it looks correct.
Moving along with chassis detail.
The prep work on the axle made a huge difference. Too bad it sits under the car!
Steel color paint work completed
Rear suspension detail is complete.
The seam filling and new paint made a huge difference on the engine even at this stage.
Silver paint work.
I’ve masked and painted the automatic transmission pan.
Curing the paint on the engine.
This engine bay rewards detail painting.
New plugs wires installed and routed correctly for a 440.
Having separated the exhaust from the axle, I had to get creative to properly attach it to the chassis. I made small pucks that fit under the mufflers.
Giving the wood grain a shot.
I didn’t use enough clear orange, but the results are still very pleasing.
A little bare metal foil was used by the shifter to wrap up the interior detail.
Another 440 from the Roadrunner project.
The wood grain does a nice job of breaking up the black interior.
The body mounted and permanently attached. Moving along…
Comparing this to the original work…much better.
The original wheels weren’t that exciting which is why I went with the Pegasus wheels. Just to check, I mounted the wheels that were prepared for the Challenger build. I would have been happy with this setup.
More and more pieces are finding their way back onto the kit.
I just had to have over-sized exhaust tips. I used two sizes of tubing to make this work.
You can see the new tips here and how I rolled the edge of the tubing to give it a smoother look for the size transitions.
I think it turned out awesome!
At this point, the project was complete. The only thing left to do was finish painting the air cleaner which I had forgotten to prepare earlier in the build.
I entered this into the local model contest without its air cleaner. It got second, but to a very well built kit. I was not disappointed.
Six months later, I finally finished painting the air cleaner. Now it is finally complete!