Sunday, August 10, 2014

Dodge AT-AT

In the summer I spend a lot of time driving the secondary highways and backroads of southeastern Ontario.  I recently saw this Mercury for sale in someone's driveway, and a memory kicked-in.
It might have been chopped down from a van, or maybe it came from the factory that way, but regardless, it reminded me of a kitbash I did back in 2009 or 2010 - before I started building my model railroad - of what I called a Dodge AT-AT. Basically, the body was donated from Lindberg's 1/25 scale Dodge Little Red Wagon dragster, and the legs came from AMT's Star Wars AT-AT Walker
I didn't take many construction photos, but the project started by filling in the wheel-wells.
The filling is pretty crude at this stage, and like the Dodge Rampage project, it required considerable work to get everything smoothed out.
This is the beginning of a new frame to attach the legs to the body. All new components were cut from sheet or shaped styrene.
Here it is up on the legs. Nothing is glued together at this point; it's just a test fit. A bit more body work had been done at this stage, and it's more or less ready for priming.
Seeing how I worked on this during the winter, and the AT-AT seemed to be a winter machine, I couldn't resist taking it out to the backyard for a photo. That rather rude exhaust nozzle is a cap from a whiteboard marker.
The body and legs were painted separately and then glued together. I built a make-shift rig on the workbench to hold the body square and steady while everything was glued together.
That's all I have in the way of construction photos. The vehicle was meant to be some sort of fishing machine. Why use a boat when you can walk right in the water :-) It's got seats on out-riggers so one can fish in comfort - but watch out while stepping on the outrigger because one misstep will land you in the drink! The passenger side door doesn't lock properly, so a convenient rope keeps it closed. That robot arm is a repainted item from a discarded Playmobil spaceship toy.
The giant gear shift is the pocket clip from a discarded pen.
There's no window in the back-wall 'cause you gotta climb outta the cab to make your way to the fishin' seats :-) One needs to be limber and not too chubby.
There's a handy bench seat so you can sit down while you use the robot arm. That's quite a gap between the outriggers and the pickup bed! I wouldn't want to be in those seats while this thing is walking. Probably should add some seatbelts.
By the time it was finished, the snow was gone and the robot arm was needed to thrash its way through the tall grass.

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