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Johannes Gerl
42 articles

Lotus 49, 1:20 from Ebbro, Part 1

December 17, 2018 · in Automotive · · 10 ≡
This article is part of a series:
  1. Lotus 49, 1:20 from Ebbro, Part 1
  2. Lotus 49 Drive Train, 1:20, Ebbro, Review Part 2

Hopefully, for some hours this jolly yellow-green fellow will inject a bit of a happy appearance to the homepage of iModeler.
Two years back at the Nürnberg Toy Fair the kit was given to me directly from the owner of . In return I promised a on iModeler.

Have you guys ever built a Tamiya 1:12 kit of an F1 car? In level of detail, parts break-down and design, Ebbro's contemporary 1:20 kits remind me much of those - I could hardly say anything more positive.
With the chassis finished, the fit so far was excellent. The plastic, however, is a bit brittle and the sprue gates are opulent, so you really have to take care to get the parts cut off without damage.

Dozens of rivets spread all over the body look marvellous and the panels are almost frighteningly thin. This is moulding at its very finest.

All in all I'm very pleased with the way this little model is coming out till now, but two spots required some additional attention.

The seat, as still normal in 1967, didn't feature any safety belts.
I first couldn't believe this and looked for references to confirm. Surprisingly none of the pictures I found showed a seat that looked anywhere close to the shape offered by Ebbro. May well be that Lotus changed the seat at some point and I just didn't come across the proper reference, but I preferred to scratch build new side panels that can be seen on my personal references. The weirdly shaped diamond stiched ones offered by the kit were removed from the seat.

The kit's shock absorbers which are moulded in one piece are kind of okay.
Actually they aren't.
I removed everything between the end pieces and scratch built it from plastic rod, tube and brass wire.

The yellow stripe is offered as decals, but be it that I'm too clumsy, I found no way to get them aligning to the rivets nicely. Eventually I painted it using Zero Paints made specifically for this kit. It's the first time I use this product and I can say that the way they spray reminds me much of my favourite brand Mr. Paint. Even more important, the match of the yellow with the decals is perfect.

Getting some bling on this thing means painting several clear coats with intermediate sanding and polishing. Lots of work, but very rewarding.

That was the first part of my review, look out for part two including the rear suspensions and the engine and of course there will be a final presentation of the finished model that contains a bit of the car's great history.

Reader reactions:
14  Awesome

2 additional images. Click to enlarge.

10 responses

  1. Beautiful! I remember that car! (I live in Indianapolis)

    • Thanks, Jeff.
      I guess what you then remember is the Lotus 38. 🙂

      • Maybe he’s remembering the Lotus Mk 3...

      • When you mentioned 1:12 Tamiya I saw the shocks and thought Ebbro had them functional in 1:20th! Nothing looks better than actual coils over the shock. (And they don't look too hard to make either!) I just scored a 1:12 Tyrrell P34 last week for $60 so I'll be starting that when the Matra gets finished. The only F1 car I've ever finished was Tamiya's RA272 in 1:20. Wish they did it in 1:12th as well.

        • That’s a good deal, @jpatt1000.
          The Tamiya 1:12 kits are increasingly hard to get these days. I have the 1:12 Lotus 49 from Tamiya in my stash, but that one is more than a 50 years old now and requires some serious scratch building to get somewhere.

  2. Me gustan los coches de ésta época.Esta quedando muy bien !.Es de agradecer las fotos con los detalles de construcción y pintura .

  3. Masterful piece of work, Johannes. Clean as a whistle and beautifully finished.

  4. You stole my comment, David, A real masterpiece!

  5. Nice review of the Lotus, Johannes, looking forward to seeing part 2.

  6. Beautiful build, Johannes, Lotus and Jim Clark were my favorite F1 Team when I first got interested in Auto Racing in the late 1960's. Racing news was slow to arrive in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania where I'm from, and I think that I did not learn of Jim Clarks Death until '69 - '70. I was aghast when I found out that they did not wear seat belts until made mandatory for the 1969 season. but the way Clark hit that tree, belts would not have saved Him. Keep up the good work, its a labor of love.

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