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FROM THE February 2011 ISSUE
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How to make a working trunk

Add functionality to your next model with this simple procedure
1929 Model A Hot Rod
If you're looking for a little something extra for your next project, think about adding an opening trunk compartment. The steps are relatively easy, and the operation can be completed with a few hours of work.

I'll use my recently-completed channeled 1929 Model A Hot Rod Roadster to demonstrate the basics, but this approach will work on the trunk compartments of most automobiles.

The same basic steps can even be used to hinge doors, although not all 1:1 cars use the opening-outward technique shown here.

Imagine the pride as you show your modeling buddies your latest project, then open that trunk lid to display a fully detailed compartment!
Step 1
Begin by separating the trunk lid from the body. You can drill a small pilot hole, then cut out the trunk with a jeweler's saw; or you can cut the trunk out with gentle swipes of your hobby knife with the blade positioned backward.
Step 2
Use a large file to touch up the edges of the trunk lid and the surrounding body. Test-fit the lid in the body. If the gap is too large, glue strips of .015" sheet styrene directly to the edges of the lid, then file to shape.
Step 3
File a chamfered surface along the inside of the lid, where the hinge mechanism will be. This provides clearance that will help the trunk lid clear the body as it goes through its upward arc.
Step 4
Bend a paper clip to this shape to form the hinge. The outer edges attach to the body, and the large center surface is epoxied to the inside of the trunk lid. I've added inner flanges along the top and the bottom of the trunk lid opening in the body (shown in white).
Step 5
I've captured the edges of the paper clip hinge in Evergreen sheet styrene tubing, and epoxied the tubing to the underside of the body.
Step 6
I glued the hinge to the trunk lid and let it dry. In the open position you can see how the hinge's shape provides clearance for the trunk to rotate. I painted the outside edges of the trunk lid flat black, to hint at a more-scale-correct thickness for the trunk lid.
Step 7
Determine how you are going to finish the interior of the trunk compartment. In this case, I had to add a trunk floor and paint the existing insides of the body in the trunk area; you may need interior trunk sides as well. I used .015" sheet styrene for the floor, and black Ken's Fuzzi-Fur for carpeting.
Step 8
I also cut a forward trunk compartment panel to separate the trunk from the interior. You can also see how I've glued the rest of the hinge to the underside of the trunk lid, then finished the remaining trunk-compartment panels flat black.
Hinged trunk compartments
A hinged trunk compartment is a great finishing touch for a scale hot rod, or any model car project. I added wood trunk-compartment walls on the 1932, and a side-hinged trunk compartment on the 1970s custom.

Editor's note: Tim posted some additional photos in a thread on the
Scale Auto Forum. Check it out!


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