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1910 Buick Bug

I have been admiring this little racer for a long time.  It seemed to be advanced in design for 1910.

Louis Chevrolet drove the Buick Bug in a Vanderbilt race


I have been studying this Buick racer for a long time as to how I might be able to duplicate it.  Styrene always seems easier than finding existing parts for a "creation."  I am not sure styrene would work with all of these contours.

I am going to attempt it using the frame and rounded undercarriage of an HP Mercedes kit.  I will remove all of the fender detail and adjust the frame as needed.

I noticed the other day that my Best / aurora indy racer collection had one model that fit the contours of the bug very well.  Thank you Fred for your built extra Maserati racer.  I will remove the broader area along the bottom of the Maserati body.  The upper part of the maserati body and the frame and rounded lower part of the mercedes seem to match up very well.

I have a rear piece from another 1/32 kit which I believe will match the rear contours of the bug.  

Much cutting and fitting!


An interesting project Tom...... although I cried a little to see that rare Maserati body in pieces!  

But I'm looking forward to seeing the Buick racer arise out of the ashes!

The maserati gave it's life for a good cause.....I seemed the only possible solution to the buick.

"Rising up out of the sawdust" might be more appropriate, though that saw was getting hot with all the cutting.

This man is crazy .....  drunken

Cut a Maserati to do a Buick Bug .... Bzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz ....  blob7

Tom ,
I can see why they named this one Bug.It's hard to believe she's a 1910 design as the design reminds me of the racers from the 30's and 40's I've seen on the internet.Anyway I'm looking forward to following the build and your next update.
Highest Regards,
Gregory Jouette

What Maserati?  ha ha

I feel like I have committed a crime using the old aurora Maserati, but i think if I am successful with this project that the Buick bug will be a much rarer and more valuable build.  I don't think this creation would be possible without the Maserati contours.  After working on the upper body I discovered that the lower body was not deep enough just using the HP mercedes contours, so I have added the lower portion of the Pyro renault (blue) with modifications for the lower body.

So far so good.

Much, much sawing and sanding later I have reached a stage where the bug is starting to emerge.  I have a complete collection of the six aurora racers.  I never stopped to think about how thick and heavy the plastic is on these old kits until I started sawing.


While doing some additional research, I found this picture with the motor exposed.

So I thought, what's one more saw cut?  I am in the process of adding a motor to the bug.

The area over the cowling between the hood and the driver's seat will  have the exposed radiator coils.  I am experimenting with ideas to recreate these exposed  coils .  I purchased some very small "pipe cleaner" pieces today and this may work.  I am still open to ideas.

Tom........ this is by far the most complex build I've seen you attempt (I think) and I'm getting itchy just waiting for the next installment.  

It's definitely captured my interest!


Help, Help .... where is my Maserati ? ....  help

... Ha Ha Ha .....  happy7

Beautiful work my friend ...  cheers

.... nevertheless, I continue to watch to verify that you do not cut too many pieces here and there ....  geek


Do you have any old bass guitar strings for the radiator? They may work out. The more I look at this enlarged, the more I think just wires with windings spaced far apart will work, Then paint it by hand flat black.

Also, you remember when wires had cloth insulation and were woven? If you could get some of that, and paint it flat black...

Now im wonderiing about rounded black shoe! geek

I like the guitar strings idea....I will look into that a little more...That may give the detail i'm looking for.

Out of the paint booth.  All other detail will need to be brush painted.

I have used a set of Pyro Rolls Royce wheels and tires.  The Pyro rolls Royce kit wheel has a series of eight bolts visible on the rim.  After a series of experiments, I have removed all of the spokes and inserted a styrene filler piece in the wheels.  I am debating whether to highlight the rims and bolts like the example picture with the engine exposed.

I really like the idea of the old bass guitar strings for the radiator coils....Great idea Mark, thanks.... and I was successful in finding a "used guitar string" that struck the right note with me...ha ha.  The owner of the guitar shop was highly amused by this transaction.  I doubt he has ever been asked for radiator coils before.

The radiator pieces are cut and ready.  Eight separate coils are visible in the example picture.  Each string is about 1/16th of an inch in diameter with eight of them needing approx. 1/2" over the cowling.  I have set the end "receptors" for these coils using a modified running board tool box from the pyro Packard kit.


Brilliant!!!!  This is going to really hit the Mark (haha), Tom.  

Hoo wooda thort?


OK for the Bass ? ... Tune your guitars .... All right ...

Ta Ta Taa, Ta Ta Ta Taa, Ta Ta Ta Ta Taa ....  headbang

"We all came out to Montreux
On the Lake Geneva shoreline
To make records with a mobile
We didn't have much time
Frank Zappa and the Mothers
Were at the best place around
But some stupid with a flare gun
Burned the place to the ground
Smoke on the water, fire in the sky" ....


Brilliant idea to use bass guitar strings ....   thumbup

Nice to see this project ....  cheers  cheers  cheers

This creation will start a n entire new meaning to a "Tune up."

You have to "Tune up" with " Smoke one the water " as a background sound, otherwise that will not work .... Ha Ha Ha .... drunken

This was certainly an interesting project.  I think I raised my own bar to accomplish this...even baring the wrath of destroying an aurora maserati.

I think it shows how advanced in engineering and streamlining this 1910 "bug" was that it took a 1948 indianapolis racer to recreate the body contours.  I can see that the rear portion behind the seat is not exact to the example pics, but I am satisfied with the overall creation.

I like doing a creation that requires some "out of the box" solutions and a little help from my friends...Thank you Mark the guitar string radiator was a great suggestion and you can see it was successful.  Thank you Fred for making a trade with me for the Maserati so I could attempt this project.

Just to make it interesting I added a motor to the project.


You nailed it!!!

Tom, this is definitely one of your best ever.......  and I agree that the radiator coils look perfect.  You're really paying more attention to the details and it shows!

Next stop........ the virtual museum!

What's next?


Very impressive project my friend. I agree with Tony 100% she's your best work to date.Your modeling skills and craftsmanship really shine in this latest project. Beautiful body work and excellent detailing to boot.
Highest Regards,
Gregory Jouette

Unique model of milestone racing car. Only glad i could help. Keep on building 'em. cheers

cheers  cheers  cheers

Tom, a very beautiful model ! ...
....I don't regret to have sent a Maserati to you ... Ha Ha Ha ....  flower
phil marchese

What a wonderful build, pictorial record, and example of the cooperation here.

1910 Buick Bug

Until now , I've seen only B/W Photos of this Car . Surely this is a great addition to your Collection . Re-Sale Red is shocking to me for the Paint Color . But , this amazement is just me . You do nice work indeed .
 As far as the Maserati , sure I don't have one yet . I will when the time  is right . It is only Plastic , this one is yours . Your Creation here is Beautiful IMHO .
 I missed this until today . The Radiator is Located a'la Renult IMHO . I would like to suggest for Flex Pipes on Supercharged '20's - '30's Scale Cars would be Springs . I found mine at Hobbylink Japan . I am converting the Lindburgh / Pyro Cord into a respectable replica .  This part is just one of the Problem areas in this Old Pioneering Tooling from 1955 . I think the solution you used is better for a Radiator then mine suggestion .
  Thanx for sharing ..  cheers

Yes, Hubley/Gabriel used springs on the superchargers exhaust of it's Duesenberg kits since the 1960's. As for the Buick, guitar strings worked well in this scale...

This is fun....retro month I guess, some older builds coming back around again.  I'm glad you guys picked this one.  This is one of my favorites and one of those projects that seemed to fall into place each step of the way.  As Phil pointed out, this one had a lot of help from my friends.  Starting with Fred, who sent me an aurora Maserati body in pretty good condition, and the rest is history.

hhmmm!  I had some good pics in the old Museum that are gone now.  I think I still have the backgrounds so I should try again. Forum Index -> automobile projects in progress
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