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Polar Lights 1/24 scale Mr. Norm's Super Charger funny car

Manufacturer: Polar Lights, from Playing Mantis, P.O. Box 3688, South Bend, IN 46619-3688, 800-626-8478.
Kit: No. 6501
Scale: 1/24
Price: $16.99
Comments: Injection molded, 121 parts (7 vinyl), decals.
Pros: Good first effort, good clear parts, good detail, instructions label parts, excellent decals.
Cons: Some parts need modification to fit, instructions sometimes vague on parts location, thick sprue attachments make removing parts difficult.
Grand Spaulding Dodge in Chicago was long known as the place to go in the Midwest for performance cars. Led by dealer president Mr. Norm Krause, its staff would take the already potent Dodge muscle cars, tune the performance, modify the engines, or make entire engine swaps for their customers. What better way to advertise a performance dealership then to put some high-powered cars on the track in front of thousands of potential customers? Mr. Norm's choice was to run in the popular NHRA Funny Car class. The Funny Car's supercharged Hemi race engine sat in a steel tube chassis encased by a fiberglass '69 Dodge Charger body. This kit is an accurate replica of that car.


I was anxious to dig into this kit, especially since it's the first release by a new player in the plastic car kit market, Polar Lights. The first thing I noticed was that the instructions identify each part with a number, color code, and name. The paint chart listed the Testor's Model Master color, and I followed their recommendation. Exploded views of the assembly sequence are provided along with the chassis- and body-notes on a few specific areas. Knowledge of this type of car or model is helpful, as many of the mounting points are not shown on the instructions.


Assembly went without any major problems, but there are a few things to watch out for. The engine front mounting plate (No. 53) should be reversed so the holes for the pins on the engine front cover will match properly. The parts for the blower (63, 64, and 65) required considerable cleanup for proper fit. For a good fit of the rear axle, you'll need to cut off the alignment pins. Also, the pin faces the wrong direction where the steering linkage (31) mates to the steering link (30).


While this is a brand-new kit, it reminds me of a typical product of the mid- 1970s. There are a lot of mold lines and ejection pin marks to be sanded. Thick sprue stubs make it difficult to remove small parts. Clipping sometimes took small chunks out of the parts, and this was most evident on the chrome pieces. With a little care, the chassis assembles straight and the suspension parts mount with ease. Several sets of wheels are included, as is a Hilborn fuel injector for building different versions of the car.


The excellent SLIXX decals are opaque, most evident when the white and silver decals were placed on the metalflake red body. A 1970 grille decal also is provided on the sheet. The body sits properly on the chassis and, with the exception of the tire smoke, looks just like the picture on the box!


Other than the few small bugs, this is a good effort on these vintage drag cars. I recommend it to modelers who have built a few dragsters. I spent 25 hours on my model, and look forward to more from Polar Lights.

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