Saturday, October 9, 2010

Pimp my Hot Wheel

Images are links to much larger versions

This tutorial covers the repainting of a Hot Wheels 2010 series.

Step 1: Drill out the Rivets

Take a drill and drill bit roughly the same size or larger than the rivet head on the underside of your Hot Wheel. Drill the rivet until you start to see plastic shavings. Most Hot Wheels have two rivets. If the plastic bottom doesn't come off easily, drill some more.

Different model in this picture, but this is basically what it looks like

Step 2: Paint Stripping Soak

I use Simple Green (non-toxic since I have small children) but there are lots of options to strip the paint. Once the rivets are out, set the plastic parts aside and drop the die-cast metal component in your paint stripping soak.

When using Simple Green, I soak 48 hours for non-metallic paint and 96 for metallic paint. Then use a toothbrush to scrub off the rest of the paint. If any lingering paint exists in cracks/seams, I use a hobby razor blade to pick it out. The goal is bare metal.

Volkswagen Sp2 and a Dodge Charger soaking

What a Hot Wheel looks like stripped to bare metal

Step 3: Add Weapons

Add whatever weapons you like or have. I have provided images showing where I found weapons for mine.

Hood Mounted Vulcan Gun

Rear Mounted Oil Jet

Nozzle made from a piece of bent solder, inserted into a hole drilled with a drill bit and pin-vise drill.

Also, Stan Johansen Miniatures in Florida produces a fantastic line of weapon add-ons as part of his Road Warrior 20mm line. Simply buy one of the packs and glue them on. Good times. (Part number RW008 "Light weapons" which is $8.00 is a personal favorite).

Step 4: Airbrushing

I'm going for a Brazilian flag theme (the SP2 was produced in Brazil only from '72 to '76).

First color, the yellow

Masking off the yellow "diamond" in the center of the flag so I can paint around it.

Second color, the green

Masking tape removed

Step 5: Hand Painting

I cut a circle in a piece of masking tape and used that to help me paint the "night sky" blue globe, when I was done I removed the masking tape.

Anything you missed and anything you feel needs to be painted you do it now. I painted gun barrels, the oil dispenser, head lights, tail lights, touched up the green, yellow, interior of the wheel wells, and things of that sort.

Step 6 and 7: Blacklining and Gloss Coat

The blacklining was done with a Sakura 005 (0.2mm) Micron Pen (black ink). I simply traced over all the panel lines. It took very little time.

I also sprayed a couple of coats of gloss on top of the paint job to seal it all in and protect the paint. In my case, I used Pledge with Future (an acrylic based floor wax) because I can airbrush it and it's cheap. However any spray gloss will work fine.

Step 8, 9, and 10: Reassembly, Magnet, and Base

Reassembly is done with superglue. The picture below has a green circle that shows where I simply pooled the superglue after I just snapped the model back together. Easy. Repeat for both rivets.

Red circles show where I placed two strong Neodymium magnets from I did this because I want to still be able to roll my Hot Wheel along and play with my children with it as a Hot Wheel. However, I don't want it rolling around when I am playing Car Wars and end a turn on a sloped surface (hill, ramp, incline, etc.).

The base is created with a 1mm piece of styrene plastic but cardstock (an old index card or cereal box cardboard) will work just as well. I cut it into a 1.5" by 3" rectangle (standard token size in 3x scale IIRC). I spraypainted it black. Then spread a bunch of Elmer's Glue (PVA Glue) on it with my finger. I then dusted it with Corn Meal (finest grind I found in the store). Once it dried, I resprayed it black again. It's the best 1:64 scale "asphalt" surface (for penny pinchers anyway) I've yet found.

FINISHED! Pictures

Other tools I used not explicitly mentioned above (lots of other options, this just happens to be what I have)
  • Reaper Master Series Paints
  • Winsor Newton Series 7 "Kolinsky Sable" paint brush (Size 0)
  • Badger 150 Airbrush
  • Paasche D200R Airbrush Compressor
  • Hobby knife/razor
  • Self healing cutting board
  • Film can with pennies in it and hobby-tack/poster tack on top of it to act as a "handle"
  • Pin vice drill
  • Needle files and ultra fine sandpaper

    Thanks: Closing

    I hope this gives you ideas on things you can do to pimp your own Hot Wheels. I will most likely continue to post pictures to this thread (if that's ok with the Mods) of other conversions I do to continue to give ideas.

    We also discovered that due to the Neodyne magnets... the car makes a GREAT fridge magnet and storage on the side of various metal things is easy. :)

    Andrew Kolb said...

    I know I am months behind but this is nerdtacular! Two things stand out, your use of cornmeal to add texture and your use of magnets to make these dual purpose toys. Thank you so much.

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