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Aoshima Toyota Crown 'Athlete' GRS214

Paints:

  • Kapci automotive 2K primer
  • more coming soon

Additional Parts:
  • Hobby Design HD02-0303 photo-etch set
  • Aoshima BBS-LM 20-inch rims
  • Photo-etch steering paddle shifters
  • HD photo-etch and custom seat belt buckles
  • Hobby Design HD04-0005 black Brembo decals
  • MG Models Malta grey Antracite flocking
  • ScaleLab_24 seat belt photo-etch pieces
  • T2M black cloth seat-belt material
  • New grille and clear parts for Fog Lights

Modifications:
  • Chassis cut and modified to align front wheels better
  • 2 sheets of styrene glued to chassis to make a 1.5mm extension
  • All brakes were corrected on the back side to make more realistic
  • Custom speaker grills added made from Tamiya mesh
  • 3 holes cut into rear seat for the seat belt buckles
  • Original Fog Lights cut out from front bumper and area smoothed
Click for more info
Aoshima Box. The Best Car GT, No.02-SP 
All the pieces provided inside box

I have made a full unboxing video of this particular kit and uploaded to YouTube. So if you're interested in knowing which parts are included, feel free to watch this video above

I shall also be using the Hobby Design HD02-0303 photo-etch set to make this Crown more realistic. This is actually dedicated for the Royal Saloon version, not the Athlete. However, only the badging are different, so I'm able to use most of the parts from it

I have also made another unboxing video for this photo-etch set where I mention the differences between both kits and what I'll be able to use. Watch it from the above link

This kit comes with a lovely set of 20-inch SSR Professor VF1 (bottom rims). However, I had these BBS-LM in my wheels cabinet and when I compared how both rims looked beneath the large Crown body, I liked the BBS more! So I've decided to use the LM!

A person who's into the Aoshima VIP scene, knows that the chassis is shared with various other kits. When mounted to a GRS214 body, one can notice that it's a little short on the front part, as can be seen above. This causes the front wheels not to be exactly in the middle of the arch. On the back, it's ok. But on the front, the wheels are too backwards

This all means that the chassis need to be slightly longer. Aoshima didn't make it, so let's make it ourselves! First thing to do is to mark where exactly to cut the chassis in two!

Chop Chop.. the chassis is in two parts! Big thanks goes to local friend Mark for the knife as it has cut the chassis as if it was made of butter! As you can see I chose to cut behind the rear interior pins, so that it won't affect the installation of the interior tub later on 

Next job was adding the styrene. I used two sheets, 1.0mm and 0.5mm to achieve the necessary extension of the chassis. These were then covered with super glue

Super glue was then sanded smooth and on the back side I also added 2 styrene strips in the opposite direction for a stronger bond.! More super glue was also added!

It was then time to re-assemble the chassis to the body and test the wheel position once again. Now, the front wheels sit much better in the middle of the arch, as seen above

With the wheels sorted, I started preparing all the parts for airbrushing the primer. The brakes were a beauty from the front, but on the back they needed some work! Pin holes were so deep they were filled with a 2mm styrene rod and then covered with super glue for a smooth finish. The Brembo lettering and bolts were sanded down while on the back, the caliper had no detail at all. So I added some simple resin pieces to simulate this

It was then time to start working on the interior and the first thing I noted was that the original paddle shifters were too simple. So a quick look at my parts box revealed I had an extra photo-etch piece left over from the LFA. Obviously, I decided to use this instead!

Then, it was time to sort out some new seat belt buckles. For the front, I will be using a pair of Hobby Design, photo-etch pieces. For the rear, I made some simple resin ones

With all the chassis and interior parts cleaned from mold lines and prepared, it was time to airbrush some layers of primer. For this, I used automotive 2K grey primer

Next job were the seats covers. For this, I mixed a custom dark red using a Zero Paints Red Leather colour together with some drops of Alclad Gloss Black. I also applied the same colour to the bottom section of the dash and door cards, referring to the real Crown

Then, it was time for the second colour: custom dark silver. For this, I first masked where necessary, then I mixed a custom colour using Alclad Gloss Black and AK Aluminium

Then I did the brake calipers where these were airbrushed in yellow, Brembo black decals from Hobby Design attached and finally cleared with several layers of Zero Paints 1K clear

Once again, all necessary items were masked so that I could airbrush the satin black

Every part was then airbrushed in satin black. For some pieces, this will be the final colour

Next, I continued working on the chassis where several parts were masked and then gloss black followed by chrome was airbrushed. The engine tray was airbrushed in silver

The photo-etch disc brakes received some sanding before attachement to make them more realistic. All the steps performed are explained and shown in the images above

Some final details were added and all the chassis pieces were ready for final assembly

Almost ready! Clips holding both silencers in place while the glue is hardening

Here's the all finished chassis of the Crown 'Athlete'

Then it was time to continue working on the interior, beginning with the speaker grills! The original door cards had no detail at all, so I used some Tamiya mesh as seen above

The rear seat needed 3 holes to insert the seat belt buckles into, just like the original. So I masked this and carefully cut out the 3 required holes, careful not to damage the paint

Next step was the flocking! I decided to go for a dark grey colour, so I chose the Antracite flocking from MG Models Malta. You can view my tutorial how I apply flocking, click here

The only thing remaining before the final assembly were the seat belts! For this, I chose the photo-etch accessories from ScaleLab_24, T2M black cloth and HD / custom buckles

All that remained was to assemble everything together and call the interior done!

With the chassis and interior done, it was then time to start working on the body. First thing I did, was to open the sunroof. Aoshima gives you the option to cut this out, or leave the roof intact. On the bottom, it is already marked and you are supplied with a clear part. So I masked the clear part to avoid scratches, and slowly drilled out a smaller opening than the marked lines. Then, I slowly sanded the plastic out until I reached the lines

Then I started assembling the body pieces to note any problems that needed correction. One such defect, was a hood corner that touches with the grille and bumper, seen above

This was filled with styrene and glue, and slowly sanded until I got the required shape

It was then time to start working on the front bumper where I wasn't a fan of the original fog lights with their cylinder shape. So I carefully cut these out and sanded area smooth

Once both fog lights were cut out and smoothed, I searched my parts box and found the grille and clear parts seen above.. perfect to make my own, cleaner-looking fog lights!

Grille was cut and sanded into two parts that fit perfectly inside the newly created fog light holes. Then, the edges were filled with styrene (no.1 above). This was followed with drilling a hole for the new lights, together with opening a vent on the other side, perfect!

Next job is to continue working on the body to perform the required modifications and get it ready for primer, so keep watching this space for more updates on the Aoshima Crown 'Athlete'.

More info inside
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