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 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor 
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Post 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Got the rough shaping of the MD-3 started. I was able to find some dulley tires at local farm supply store today. I'm going with the A/S32-31A version which is an upgraded version of the A/S32-31. From the research I have found the 31's started getting upgraded in the early to mid 60's and used up till the late 90's. The Navy is slowly phasing them out with the A/S32-32 carrier tractor. If all goes well with this progect I plan on maing the APU unit to go on the back.
I would be interested in any input you guys would have. I have scoured the internet trying to find a meaning for all the GPCX TR056 markings on the references I have. Were these assigned to a specific carrier or just the tractor references? I am encouraged by the progress so far. As time and work permits I'll post pics.
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Sat Jan 07, 2012 9:28 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Nice! I've always liked ground support vehicles.


Sat Jan 07, 2012 10:27 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
flayrah wrote:
Nice! I've always liked ground support vehicles.

correction DECK support vehicles lol

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Sun Jan 08, 2012 12:09 am
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Very cool! This seems like such an obvious thing for one of the aircraft manufacturers to do but alas they are pretty dry these days so you'll be set. :-)

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Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:08 am
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Very cool idea! Looks good too! 8)

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Sun Jan 08, 2012 6:45 am
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Probably need one to tow my son's F/A-18 to my work table!


Sun Jan 08, 2012 4:28 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Found a few minutes to work on the deck support vehicle :D . It's starting to take a little more shape. Little more sanding and I'll hit it with some primer. Next item to work is the front area. Anyone have any suggestions on what to use for the extended wire mesh on the hood area?
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Sun Jan 15, 2012 3:52 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Little more progress.

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Wed Jan 25, 2012 2:26 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Yes...
I've seen some better (front) wheels on Playmobil, Brudor and Schleich trucks and farm tractors (mainly 1:16 and 1/24th scale), if you know children who would let some to you for molds...
You asked previously for chains or wire or tubes, did'nt you? I got very fin chains at what seems to be like the hobby-storesyou have in the US, in the lady's corner where to buy kits to make your own jewelry . Used them to make snow chains for my 1/18 humvees, but also to make buccles for belts (made with fin ribbon). If you're not afraid to be the only man in a haberdasher's shop, you can find a lot of small usefull stuff. Elastic thread from different diameters makes excellent tubes... or tear away the copper thread from electric lines and keep the insulated sheath.


Thu Jan 26, 2012 1:18 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Thanks Granch. Are those European brands? My local tractor supply store was looking at me funny while I was measuring every tractor and truck wheel in the toy isle. I looked on line but you can't get tire dimensions. It's a hands on deal.

The dually tires off a 1/16 new ray dump truck and the front off a CAT tractor. Dimensionally they are accurate. The yellow rim doesn't help matters.

I'm not gettng much feedback as I thought I would. It looks like a turd now but I am getting alittle more time to work on it. I think she'll polish up nice. I'm open to ideas or suggestions. I am going with the KISS (Keep it simple stupid) method. That way I figured if there was interest the costs would be low enough to make cast and resin copies. To add an engine or stearable wheels that all adds to the cost. I was hoping to keep it in the $20-25 range for a kit.

Interest????


Thu Jan 26, 2012 2:20 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
I think it's a great project pizzaguy, I just don't know if there would be enough interest to make and sell. I've made a handfull of WWII custom vehicles, all aviation-themed - from a bomb transport to an airfield tractor - and couldn't get enough interest to even pay for my materials. I have some other vehicles I'm considering, but my enjoyment is in the making and when they're done they just sit around. There's also the question of drivers and ground crew which generally need to be customized or modified to be at all accurate.

Bruder and Schleich manufacture toy, but relatively realistic, vehicles in about 1/16 or larger. They are on the expensive side and generally at high-end toy stores but Bruder, particularly, can often be found at the big discount stores like TJ Maxx. A few weeks ago I saw a fire engine on clearance for $10.


Thu Jan 26, 2012 2:46 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Go on, Pizzaguy! Once finished, your vehicle could wake much interest! I've made some carrier deck crew with cheap 1:18 vietnam tank drivers from 21st century. My helmets were poor, but well, I've just spent 1 hour on them, so... as you can see, your tractor would be nice here (please, note that it's only a trial, I hope to have one time the possibility of moving my tennis table at the seasid for the background):
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I'm just sorry my son doesn't want to trade his FA-18 for my F-16. Oh, and I just saw at toys-r-us 3 3/4" toy soldiers sold as twin package, one had the exact headsculpt for the typical carrier crew).


Fri Jan 27, 2012 5:20 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Looking great Nathan!

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Fri Jan 27, 2012 9:17 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Quote:
I just saw at toys-r-us 3 3/4" toy soldiers sold as twin package, one had the exact headsculpt for the typical carrier crew).


Granch, Was that online or in the store that you seen those figures? Do you recall the name of them? I'm hoping I can find sometime this weekend to make a little more progress.


Thu Feb 02, 2012 2:00 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Pizzaguy,
It was in a store, they don't have the figure anymore. I searched on the web and could get a picture, it's a true heroe 2010 release. Buy one if you can, make a mold and some copies of the head sculpt (I have a need of 6). I think it's the closest head+helmet+mic+earpone+goggle you can find for a deck crew figure:
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Sun Feb 05, 2012 12:53 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Pizzaguy - saw those figures on the peg, the headsculpt has much potential but is oversized IMO and would look odd on the bbi body. It would take some work to find a correct body without looking overscale, but it should be possible.


Sun Feb 05, 2012 4:49 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Flayrah, I conceed that I had'nt any BBI figure in my pocket to compare the size and scale to the true heroe figure. BBI are 3 3/4", True Heroes seems to be 4". I'm sorry if you're right when you're saying the head sculpt would be too big for any 21st ore BBI body.


Mon Feb 06, 2012 3:04 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Dude, I so need one of those tractors to go with my Tomcat (that is sitting on one of your stands). I LOVE diorama stuff. Any chance we can convince you to next to a EPU tractor or a fire engine? PIZZA GUY: THE GOD OF BIG ASS DIORAMAS!


Sat Feb 11, 2012 3:26 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Astro, I am hoping to get this done soon. I've been swamped with orders and work that I have not been able to get much done. I made a little more detail work a couple days ago. I need to work on the hood vents then I should be ready for a couple primer coats and sanding. Then it's on to the tow bar.

If I were to tackle the deck crew. What is everyone expecting? Static or poseable figures? The more detail and articulation increases the cost and time. # of crew?


Sun Feb 12, 2012 5:52 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
I can't wait for you to release these because I know they'll be top notch. As far as figures: That's a toss up- poseable figures offer versatility but they NEVER are able to really be posed in realistic positions: IE a shooter lunging on the deck sending a plane off the cat. No hip joint short of Marvel Legends is gonna pull that off, whereas a non-poseable figure could be sculpted like that, but then you lose that versatility. Honestly, I'd design one "generic" poseable figure, something with a basic deck crew attire, and then he could be painted as any of the colored shirts and used in multiple. You could even do two heads (goggles down/goggles up) to add a little variety. Add some different skin pigments, and you've got lots of versatility there. I'd also consider a static figure or two, like a plane director signalling (fingers and all) or the shooter I mentioned before who would look very dramatic but only useful for that. Maybe even a driver for your awesome tractor? Honestly, I'd rather see a fire tractor or the little EPU tractors get made first, because reasonable substitutes can be found for deck crew, but nobody has support vehicles except you.


Mon Feb 13, 2012 9:58 am
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
double post due to crappy network hangups... :hornet:


Mon Feb 13, 2012 9:58 am
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Made alot of progress the past couple days. I finally was able to get the body sanded and primed. Worked on the driving compartment items and tow hook. I ordered the Verlinden 1/32 Carrier Deck Accessories to get some ideas on the tow bar. I have not been able to find any good pictures. I am going to make this version with what apprears to be a counter weight on the back. Then I have future plans to make a EPU to go on the back. I thought about using small magnets to make switching out the parts easier.

I am at the stage now that if there was any interest I could cast the parts. Roughly looking at the cost of silicone and resin a kit would run in the ball park of $35 + shipping. I would need to see if Jackson could produce the decals for me. :D Then next up would be the figures. Maybe a fire engine?

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Thu Feb 23, 2012 2:35 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Nice growing project, go on Pizzaguy! Please, try to make a tow bar that allows the towing of BBI's Hornet, compatible with JSI's F-14...


Thu Feb 23, 2012 4:22 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
Got my Verlinden resin kit today. I don't understand why I am getting so worked up about cleaning up the parts before they go out. I was always under the impression the parts needed to be in semi ready to assemble shape. These came in with the sprues and flash all attached. I plan on reverse engineering the tow bar and making one in 1/18 scale.

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Fri Feb 24, 2012 4:45 pm
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Post Re: 1/18 MD-3 A/S32-31A Carrier Tractor
I have a bunch of 1/72 Verlinden kits that also came like that. I guess you could always offer a rough kit that is similar to Verlinden's kits and then a "ARB" kit for more $ that was almost-ready to-build, kinda like the RC plane kits that are sold either as a full build or almost airworthy forms. All I know is I'm in for $35, and if it comes with decals that would be over the top. Painting one of these up in yellow wouldn't be too hard. Are you doing axles with rolling wheels or are you fixing the wheels a-la the Verlinden tractors?


Sun Feb 26, 2012 8:59 pm
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