Zen and the art of model car maintenance
At the beginning of the video published by user New Car Restoration, the Mulsanne appears to be in “found” condition, with its dirty interior, severed-in-two structure, and chipped black paint appearing as though it had been buried in the garden for years. Closer inspection reveals pretty uniform cuts on the bodywork, and the YouTube channel also features a similarly damaged BMW X5 model car, leading us to believe the YouTuber deliberately damaged the model to strut their restoration prowess. Whatever the case may be, what unfolds is very impressive.
The video starts with a complete disassembly of the model. The interior, doors, hood, trunk, and chassis bits are all removed from the body. Then, all painted panels get a thick coat of paint remover, with vigorous steel wool application to bring them down to bare metal. Strategic use of epoxy mates the severed body together again, with care taken to polish the A-pillar and floor rails to a nearly smooth finish. Then comes a surface-correcting orange primer, followed by shiny silver paint.
The interior is next to receive some attention. Scrubbed clean with a toothbrush and some detergent, each piece is taken apart as much as possible. In addition to the exterior, the interior receives a color change as well, going from tan to black and gray. The model master takes care to mask some parts of the interior, such as the dash top and center console, but unfortunately, some bits like the speaker grilles are painted over.
Next, the model car’s exterior brightwork receives the “murdered out” treatment, with the mesh grille and rocker and bumper trims getting painted gloss black – the newly cleaned and polished wheels as well.
At last comes the Mulsanne’s final assembly. Doors, hood, and trunk get re-fastened to the body, miniature suspension and brake bits find their way under the newly reunified chassis, and the “dyed” interior takes its rightful place. Close inspection reveals a few paint blemishes, and the epoxy joints aren’t as invisible as one might like, but overall, we find ourselves very impressed by the YouTuber’s craftiness. If nothing else, the video gives us hope that someday, maybe we’ll be able to repair the damaged pieces of memorabilia we might find in the garage or storage locker.