Monogram 1/24 MAC Tools IndyCar

KIT #: 36115
PRICE: $16.98
DECALS: At least two options
REVIEWER: Shawn Payne
NOTES: New mold kit


In the late 1980’s Monogram released a series of IndyCar model kits.  Each kit covered a different type of chassis and engine combination.  This kit is of the Buick Lola combination that was driven by Teammates, 3 time Indy 500 winner , Johnny Rutherford and Jim Crawford in the 1988 Indy 500.  Jim Crawford was the only non-Penske driver to lead a lap in that year’s 500 which saw Rick Mears win his 3rd of 4 500’s.


The model is molded in white plastic.  The tree for the wheels, mirrors and fuel filler cap are chrome plated with the windscreen molded in clear smoked plastic.   The decals are a little thick but well printed and work well with solvents.  The decals give you the option of either of the two cars.  The parts have no flash and require little clean up.  The detail is very nice and accurate for the engine and cockpit tub.  It also gives you the front and rear wings to build either speedway or short track/road course configurations.  The black vinyl tires are good representations of the Goodyear speedway slicks.

The instructions give you step by step construction in good order and also give painting guides and after some reviewing of the speedways archives to be correct for what colors to use and where.

The parts for the engine are well detailed and it comes with the two engine halves, two transmission halves with separate headers and valve covers with the manufacture Buick logo molded in.   Also included is a driver figure.


Starting with the engine I glued the 2 halves of the block together and then the transmission halves together.  For ease of painting I did not glue the engine and transmission parts together at this time.  The rest of the engine parts were cleaned up and prepped for painting. 

Now on to the tub.  I decided not to use the driver so I set those parts in the spare parts box and moved on.   For this kit most of the parts were painted before the construction was done.   I painted the tub aluminum with the dash flat black and highlighted the instrument gages with silver, white and red.  A drop of crystal clear was placed in the gage faces and the tub was done.   The bottom of the chassis’s inside engine compartment was painted flat black and the molded lower rear suspension painted chrome silver.  I used bare metal foil where the exhaust heat shields are on the chassis. With that done it was time to glue in the tub and the engine after it was painted and assembled to the lower chassis.   At this point decide which wing package you’re going to go with and place the front wing in to place.  Glue the upper part of the front tub to the lower chassis and your ready for final painting of the body.  With this kit the engine cowling and upper side pods are removable to allow you to see the engine detail and radiators with the plumbing once completed.  


The body of this car was over all white with yellow and red highlights.  The decals provide the yellow for the nose and red trim for the side pods and rear engine cowling.  Testors Yellow and Red was spot on matches for the decals.  Yellow was painted on the side pods and the portion of the lower sides of the nose along with the rear cowling.  The rear wing and wing supports were painted Red.   A coat of testers gloss and next was the decals.  Even though the decals were a little thick they went on with no problems.  With Monogram decals of this era I put a little Elmer’s white glue in the water I used to wet them down with.  This helps the decals adhere better and not curl up on the edges.  I did use a setting solution on the rear wing decal and it worked well with the decal, no problems there.

Keeping with the look of the car Johnny Rutherford drove that year I painted the wheels gloss black.  I used acrylic white to paint the Goodyear lettering on the tire, enamel never seems to dry on the vinyl.

With the body painted and decaled I finished the rest of the assembly.  I attached the upper parts of the front and rear suspension, then on went the tires and wheels. 


I built this kit straight out of the box without adding any extra details.  It went together without any fit problems and no need for filler and hours of sanding.  This kit has lots of potential for “super detailing” and I do intend to build another one with that in mind some day.  This kit can be built as a first time kit and you will get great results from it. 


Photo archives of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. online photo archives.

 Shawn Payne

November 2009


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