Woodcarver Ezine
Back Issues
Carvers' Companion Gateway

The Art of the Automobile: Part 2

WWF: The typical stages of preparation are: 1st resin, 2nd resin and so on. Gray primer and red putty sanded out and reprimed and reputtyed again. Now this is where you can get it smooth. Do this over and over until you get it perfect. This is hours of work to get perfection.


WWF: When you get it smooth this is when you spray-paint it. I use a basecoat (color) and then clearcoat over the color with a urethane clear. This is where you get the high gloss that the automobile demands.

The early ones I did were good old hand rubbed lacquer. Not as pretty, but authentic.


< Several of the steps in the construction of a wheel.


< Front right and spare wheels mounted.



WOM: What tools do you typically use?

WWF: Needle Files, Xacto knives using all blades different, depending upon what you are trying to accomplish. Drills of all sizes, small electric sanding tools, and .MicroMark tools



< Headlights and front bumper


WWF: I make a lot of my sanding tools. It takes different shaped tools for different jobs. For example, on a wheel the rim is concave on the outer part. Take a piece balsa, carve it the concave shape, glue sandpaper to it and you have a sanding die the shape of the rim.

Balsa sands easy so when you have the shape it is easy to concave the rim of this wheel. Save this sanding stick so when you get to the resin on the wheel you can use it again. This is just one example of a sanding stick that you can make for the job. There are many more you will want to make for yourself.


WOM: How are the windshields and other "glass" produced?

WWF: For windshields, I make a shape of the windshield out of a block of balsa wood, I then take the same sanding resin and build up the windshield block with numerous coats of resin. When I think I have enough on, I cut the wood out of the plastic windshield. A waste of balsa wood, but it does the job. The thing to remember here you have to sand each coat of resin before you add another coat. It isn't easy, but it is a nice.



View of the plaque from the front. Note the compression at this view, and compare it to the finished product below.


WOM: Bill, I understand the cars take 400 to 600 hours to complete. What's your typical schedule?

WWF: I use to work long hours doing this and I considered it "quality" time, 10-12 hours a day. Couldn't leave it alone.

More recently I haven't had the steam up that I use to have. Maybe this is just in the fact that I am 77 years old and the steam went somewhere. Right now I am doing a 1956 Chevrolet Convertible. I do only work on one at a time. It gets boring towards the end, but I am always looking forward to the next one.


1932 Dodge by W.W. Fayette

Bill Fayette will be back in the July/August addition of the Ezine with a 1960 Corvette.

To see more of Bill's work, visit his web site at http://www.creativewoodsculpture.com; email him at fayetteww@aol.com.

Back to Part 1