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an illusion with driver figures

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  • an illusion with driver figures

    I am not only slotracer but also scale modeller. That means I make a bit higher demands on some aspects of my models.
    One is the realism of the drivers.
    It is not easy to find driver figures that look really good and realistic. Most of what is to be found in RTR cars ( mainly formula and other open cars ) is not scale and not scale - like as well.
    Fortunately I found the excellent figures of Denizen. They look so good that I bought quite a pile of the selection and copied them in silicone. The originals are in metal, way too heavy for slotcars. I have even asked the producer of the figures to make them in resin, too, but – no reaction.
    So I have moulds of them all and have already cast a few , too, but I haven´t used even one until now. But today the feeling of at last doing something with the figures overcame me.
    As I wrote I am real scale modeler as well. So my principle of getitng scratchbuilt slotcars is a bit different. I build every car I like, but first and foremost as a static model. So all the cars are standing in the shelf, waiting for being converted into mobile vehicles. Kits from PM, Starter, BBR, Heller, AMT and whatever.
    Today I wanted to install a driver in one of the LMP´s - an Audi R10. The horror has not ended yet by now.
    I put one of the sitting figures together - hands with arms, legs and head are separate - and disassembled the model to get free access to the seat.

    Everything looked really well detailed and correct.
    What a disappointment when I tried to place the figure in the seat. Either the driver is too fat, or the seat is made for superslim drivers or one of both resp. both isn´t scale.
    My expectation was „both the model and the figures are excellent quality, so the driver should fit the seat without any problem.“
    Errare humanum est. I cut the figure in smaller pieces. I thinned the arms. I left the legs off. I narrowed the shoulders. Nothing helped.

    If the Audi is really exact 1/43 its driver must have been almost bulimic.
    Tomorrow I will continue adapting the driver, but first I will measure myself, then the seat, to compare and find out what is wrong. And then I will make a “universal driver“ which fits all those narrow - cockpit cars like LMP, CanAm and whatsoever.

    Last but not least – I wrote this to warn all those who think they take a Denizen figure and have an excellent driver. They have, of course, but „fit or not fit, that is the question“.


  • #2
    Roland, i can picture you, sitting there, scales in hands and pulling your last (long grown due to the virus) hairs. A funny picture.
    yep, scale is not scale.
    Denizen figures looks great.
    Did you see a picure of Alan Prost lately? He´s a small, slim man. Saw a funny pic lately, he´s standing on a box to nearly reach the height of the lady next to him who´s wearing high heels. Go figure.


    • #3
      I use Immense Miniatures when needed. They have the best driver figures in my opinion.


      • taskak
        taskak commented
        Editing a comment
        Nice but nothing in 1:43 scale...

    • #4
      Yes, Immense Miniatures provides the best scale drivers I ever saw.

      This post reminds me of the days past when we all laughed at the "Mr Bobblehead" drivers in Scalextric cars. The drivers were a bit out of scale, but the driver's heads were crazy large. They did this for years, so much so that when they finally changed it, everybody saw it immediately. I used to buy heads to replace Scaley Bobbleheads with.

      I have some drivers that were sold as 1/32nd, but were nearly small enough for HO. I don't know if I'll ever find a use for them, but I pointlessly keep them, just like the little peg half-axles that came from Fly cars I put normal axles in over the years.


      • #5
        I was working with Provence Moulage Nissan R87R interior cock pit yesterday.
        Tried to mount Vroom figure to it which origin I don't know, can't see one like that on Denizen site.
        Anyway the figure height can't be more than 4 cm which means 172 cm in 1:1 , right?
        No way to mount the driver to the cock pit, this has been the case with all the LM cars i have worked from Provence Moulage.
        Steering wheel from the set was wider than the seat and the size looked like it was taken from old Cadillac.
        I think that the driver figure I used was OK except the arm position but the interior from the model was all wrong
        Last edited by taskak; May 15, 2020, 02:16 PM.


        • #6
          Originally posted by Dogsbody
          I use Immense Miniatures when needed. They have the best driver figures in my opinion.
          Well, that doesn´t mean anything at all if they don´t fit in place.
          Besides that I need 43rd scale. And Denizen figures generally are really very good. I don´t see any difference to the IM ones. IMHO.

          And I prefer neutral figures, not defined ones that coerce me into building an appropriate car in a special livery because this or that driver drove it.
          Hold a 43rd scale slotcar 40 cm ahead of your face and tell me who the driver is.

          I have just collected some data about race seat sizes and drivers´ measurements and tomorrow in the morning I will collect my next disappointments when I compare my data and the casts..

          Patience is a minor form of despair.....etc.



          • #7
            I just thought of something... those tiny, out of scale figures I bought long ago... Maybe they would do for 1/43rd? Is it worth bothering to measure them?


            • #8
              Originally posted by waaytoomuchintothis
              I just thought of something... those tiny, out of scale figures I bought long ago... Maybe they would do for 1/43rd? Is it worth bothering to measure them?
              I have a lot of these ca. 1/48 scale Chinese clones lying around. They are definitely smaller. Maybe the sitting figure fits. Using its body because it is slimmer, add arms and head of a Denizen, might become the optimum driver figure.


              Last edited by walker; May 16, 2020, 02:21 AM.


              • #9
                Originally posted by GoldGuy
                Make your own from clay found at craft outlets that you can bake in an oven, a few dollars for the small blocks. Good for motors, rads and other bits if needed. There's two kinds, look for the soft one.
                Would you please be so kind as to show me in a short videoclip of your own how you make a driver figure ?
                Having read your reply it seems to be quite easy, even in such a tiny scale.
                Although my own experiences with sculpting in 43rd scale are different, I am eager to learn how to make it easier and better.
                Thank you in advance !

                Kind regards,

                BTW.: The sculpting material of choice of small model sculptors is 2K putty, such as Green Stuff or Apoxie. Possibly mixed with a small amount of FIMO.
                Last edited by walker; May 16, 2020, 02:24 AM.


                • #10
                  Well, I don´t need any endless basics because I have been sculpting for a long time yet. From 15 mm via 1/43rd up to 1/ 32nd.
                  There are probably thousands of articles on Youtube. But only a handful that are really good and worth watching. And the one you suggested - sorry, but what has this to do with race and other small scale figures ? I checked more than 20 of her clips, but none deals with what my problem is. And it is a boring series of introductions, quite one-sided.
                  Meanwhile the problem has been solved.

                  Last edited by walker; May 24, 2020, 04:22 PM.


                  • #11
                    Originally posted by pfuetze
                    Roland, i can picture you, sitting there, scales in hands and pulling your last (long grown due to the virus) hairs. A funny picture.
                    Long grown - at least at the sides !
                    Btw - scales in one hand, the hammer in the other.

                    But it is annoying. You build a series of 43rd static scale models from various really good kits , all being intended to be converted into slotcars.
                    And as a "believer" you assume that such brands like PM or BBR know what they do. And you learn that you fail. They aren´t even able to make a simple race seat in exact scale. All seats I meanwhile measured ( there are more than 20 models waiting to be converted ) are too narrow.
                    Perhaps these firms should have released their kits with drivers.



                    • #12
                      "sound offended" :

                      I am offended once and again by such eulogies of many firms like "scale model", "super / top quality" "collector´s quality" and whatever- and then you dash against such simple things like real exact dimensions of figures and seats.
                      - If you mean that. -

                      Otherwise :
                      Expert - what is an expert ? I simply have been doing this hobby ( 43rd scale slotcars ) for ca. 20 years now, slotcars in general since 1969 and real professional modeling incl. mouldmaking, casting, sculpting, and above all designing of plastic scale models for two of the biggest plastic modelling firms since ca. 1990.
                      I surely know my stuff, but am I an expert ?
                      This is beyound my judgement.

                      Having read my replies you ought to have realized that I am not new in this business.

                      Kind regards,
                      Last edited by walker; May 25, 2020, 02:20 AM.


                      • #13
                        Sorry if I don´t take part in a contest "Who does what longer ?" because the length of doing anything is no sign for whatsoever but the time span for how long one has been doing it.

                        As to sharing - we don´t know each other so you do not know anything about me and how much and often I share . So please........

                        Possibly we have met at any race or championship since the late sixties w/o knowing each other ?

                        Well, I´m packing it in. This is not the reason why I started this topic.

                        Best regards,



                        • #14
                          Did I write the problem is solved in #13 ?
                          I´m way off the mark.

                          This is the model I´m working on.
                          I must start telling that the figures here are only test casts. Their job is to be "surgically" cut, posed, glued, test fitted, cut again, posed etc.etc. Not more.

                          The inner part including the seat which fits exactly below the cockpit opening

                          All test parts

                          First attempt to place a driver
                          Bear in mind that the driver has already been narrowed all along the body from the shoulders down to the feet.
                          See where the left elbow lies ?

                          The same drama in sideview

                          And from behind.....

                          And the grand finale - the comparison

                          On the left an ex - Denizen figure narrowed - more was not possible because even as it is the body is not in good proportions to the head / helmet.
                          On the right an original cast from a sitting Denizen driver.....( Schwarzenegger ???)

                          Last but not least the sixty-four-thousand-dollar-question :


                          Nevertheless I love modeling.

                          Last edited by walker; May 26, 2020, 02:40 PM.


                          • #15
                            It is done !

                            I managed to reshape the driver figure so that it fits in the very narrow cockpit, and it even has the steering wheel right in its hands.
                            Now I will re - engrave a few details and then make a mould of it because open cars like Canam, LMP and similar spyders are my favourites and almost 20 readily built ones are waiting for a driver.
                            The only thing I will still have to change is the seat whch is way too tight, as to be seen on the photos.

                            Is the helmet size okay, or is it too big - compared to the cockpit opening, what do you think ?