MERCURY V10 SPORTSWAGON
AMT 1949 MERCURY, 1955 NOMAD
& 1997 VIPER KIT BASH
BUILT BY IRA DAHM (10/03)
HONORABLE MENTION IN THE 10TH ANNUAL
CUSTOM CLINIC CONTEST!
2ND PLACE WINNER IN THE CUSTOM CLASS
AT THE SANTA ROSA IPMS SCALE MODEL EXPO 2004!
MORE COLOR PHOTOS BELOW!
I have always enjoyed late '40s and early
'50s Custom Mercurys, especially when they are chopped and lowered. My plan
was to create a new design that used classic custom techniques, but at the
same time included some newer styling ideas. The latest Custom Street Rod
Sport Wagon look was what I had in mind. I wanted it chopped and lowered
with a new updated engine and low profile tires. Viper body parts were used
to add a little excitement to the Mercury's classic looks. The original
hood ornament and trunk emblem/license plate light were incorporated in
the final design of the MERCURY V10 SPORTSWAGON to retain a hint of the
The MERCURY V10 SPORTSWAGON is based on the
AMT 1949 Mercury with the wagon roof from the AMT 1955 Nomad and the V-10
engine, interior and body parts from the AMT 1997 Viper. The wheels and
tires are from the AMT Street Heat with Pegasus disc brakes modified to
Here's how it was built, (see the construction
shots at bottom of page). first the Mercury roof was cut off 3/4" from
the windshield down to the trunk opening. The Mercury top was then chopped
1/8". The Mercury vent windows and windshield posts were removed. The
Nomad roof was then cut to fit the stock Mercury bodies beltline and the
Nomad center/side window posts were removed. All the body pieces in the
kitbash were attached with "Zap A Gap" glue and filled with baking
powder. The trim on the Nomad tailgate was removed and the Mercury trunk
opening was trimmed to fit the tailgate. This area was then shaped with
a Dremel tool and sanding boards.
The Viper rear bumper/roll pan was trimmed
to fit, lined up with the Mercurys character line and attached. The Vipers
horizontal taillight holders were cut from the Viper, then the Mercury fenders
were cut out to fit the taillight holders vertically. The Viper rear license
plate holder was cut from the Viper and narrowed to 1/2" wide. Then
the tailgate was cut out to fit the license plate holder.
The front of the Mercurys hood was lowered
1/8", by progressively sectioning it 1/8" in the front down to
nothing at the rear edges. The Viper hood scoop was cut out of the Vipers
hood and then the Mercurys hood was cut out to fit the scoop. The Viper
hood vents were cut out and the Mercurys sides were cut out to fit the vents.
The dual headlights are from AMTs Ala Kart.
The headlight holders were cut out of the Ala Kart front end and the Mercurys
headlight openings were elongated to fit them. The top edge of the headlights
were peaked by using the top half of AMT 1956 Fords headlight frames and
strip plastic. The grill area from the Viper was cut out and trimmed to
fit the Mercurys grill cavity. Recessed signal light openings were then
cut into the Mercurys custom front roll pan. Tailgate and door lines were
scribed in. The body was then filled and primed.
The front half of the interior, dashboard
and custom console are from the Mercury. The back of the interior and custom
steering wheel are from the Nomad. The seats, speaker/seats panel, steering
column, pedals, shifter and handbrake are from the Viper. The console monitor
is cut from matte black tape and the 6 additional speakers are headlight
lenses painted flat black. Arm rests are made from strip plastic and the
bed area is sheet plastic with strip plastic fit to the Viper speaker/seats
The V-10 Viper motor was fit to the Mercury
frame after minor frame trimming and the spare tire bump was removed and
filled. The transmission tunnel was enlarged to fit the Viper transmission.
The Nomad radiator was cut down to fit. Solder was shaped, painted and used
for radiator hoses.
The interior is Model Masters modern Desert
Sand and Tan with Gloss Yellow and Orange dashboard and console. The frame
and undercarrige are painted Gloss Orange dusted with Model Masters Champaine
Gold. The Viper engine is flat aluminum with yellow, gold, black and orange
The MERCURY V10 SPORTSWAGON body was painted
with a blend of colors. The top is Krylon Gloss White, then it blends into
Gloss Yellow and then into Gloss orange on the bottom and the front. Then
Model Master Champaine Gold was misted from the bottom edge up the sides.
Then three coats of Testors High Glosscote were applied. The body was then
dried in a dehydrater.
The stock Mercurys hood ornament was fit
to the Viper scoop. The Mercury trunk emblem was placed above the recessed
license plate. The Viper dual exhaust pipe ends were drilled out and highlighted
with black. Side mirror is from AMT's 1971 Duster.