This is a review of the Lindberg 1966 Chevrolet Chevelle SS Kit#72181

This is a bit of a different review as it is a restoration of sorts as well. I have loved this car since owning a metal one when I was really little. Couldn’t get enough of the look and still like the shape today. The built model I have is one I’ve had for many years, but it needed sprucing badly so its been in a closet for some 5+ years. Not anymore!

So, right off the bat, there are VERY few kits of this wonderfully pretty car. These two and the above are all of the same mold and quality, and they are getting more rare by the minute. They also aren’t the greatest of kits, but I’ll be getting to that as well.

I can say that options for the ’66 are rather grim as well. Either a completely non-stock, flip-nosed street car, or a beyond-pathetic station wagon. I don’t care if it has a tri-carb 427, it is a wagon! EGH! Why this car wasn’t reissued more OR made by AMT/Revell, I just don’t know. Suffice to say, however, that between the excellent engine, and handsome looks, it should’ve been.

CAR BACKGROUND :: A complete re-do from the Malibu of ’65, the ’66 Chevelle was a fantastically handsome cruiser. Even with a 283ci, this car was pretty spirited, but mine sports a 350hp, 396 Turbo-Fire. Enough to run it into the low 15s with ease and give burnouts til tire funds are depleted. It was more than that, however, as it was a start of a set of big, beefy cars that would clobber the muscle car scene all the way til 1972. Why Chevy has never re-born the classic is a mystery, but you can’t ignore this one.. not if you try.

Like I said above, this is a bit different in that this is a redo of a kit I did a while ago. This one was painted Tropical Turquoise and is probably closer to the original color than the re-do, but I like the new one’s color – Tamiya Cobalt Blue. I can say this is an easy kit but there is a lot of odd fitting parts and I’ll get to them as I go. Another oddity is that the redline tires that are shown on the box pic are NOT included. Kinda lousy. I added a set myself.

I did not get a good view of the interior, but I can say that it is fairly well detailed. Not quite as good as a typical Revell kit, Lindberg still does a good job and typically better than AMT.

Also better than AMT, Lindberg has really detailed engine bays. This 396 was like this after 5 years on the shelf, so it was staying put. Love the yellow wires and the rest came out splendidly. There is nothing really needed here and the only thing I had to do was replace the air cleaner as the last one was faded badly. Big thing to be careful here is the radiator wall “top” has to be glued on and not only can it be a bit on the long side, but has to fit right or the hood will not close correctly.

The underside of this one is fantastic as well. The exhaust fits well and has pinpoint places for it to be glued for no non-sense hooking up. I went with the cherry bomb red looking mufflers and added better tips, but the detail here is one of Lindberg’s high points throughout their line. They just have a lot to look at. This chassis area also includes one of the low points as well. The tires were garbage (and not the redline ones), and the axle pins are tiny. With these setups I usually re-do the axles completely – replacing the pins with toothpicks that are thicker and hold up better.

On top of some of the annoyances that I mentioned, there are some other fitting issues. The front grille is two pieces and the bumper has very little to adhere to; the rear bumper is a lousy fit; the hood vents don’t show up quite as well as you’d hope, and the worst part is the chrome insert around the rear glass for trim – which I omitted – as it fits poorly and doesn’t match the car’s other trim. However, there is a lot of goodness here – nice rim set, engine bay, interior, chassis, and even the quality of the plastic (low flash/good fit). These kits weren’t too plentiful when released and have gotten SPARCE, so holding on to one will almost guarantee you a good investment. This car should be made though… and I did twice.

7.75 – Good

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