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Jordan Truck Build

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  • Jordan Truck Build

    Welcome to a build for a HO scale Jordan Highway Miniatures Model 238, 1925 Ford Model TT Stake Truck. There are many proper methods to assemble and paint these kits, but I've changed a few things to make a difficult project somewhat "easier". I follow the directions generally, but after building a couple dozen, I always look for sub-assemblies that I can have ready when needed . I also built a jig for one of the most difficult processes, the assembly of the wheels and axles.

    Jordans come in many styles but most are pre-1930, and range from horse and buggy, to fire engines.

    Built up Jordans can be seen all over the forum, IMO two of the best builders are Chester Fasmire and of course, Karl Osolinski.

    Forum member Ken Marken did a 3 part thread on this same topic back in 2004, and it is very comprehensive build for a more complicated Jordan 1928 Model A sedan. I recommend his threads for beginners. You can find them here:

    I use three different glues, Pro Weld, CA and Testors liquid. Use depends on how quick I want to bond pieces together. Tools include a tweezers, jewelers file, emery board and a brand new, very sharp Xacto and Optivisor. (Or any magnifying device of your choice).

    The Model TT stake truck is one of the easier kits, with fewer parts and less complications.

    First the contents of the little white box. The detail is excellent. Minor flash was removed. Unlike Marken, I did not wash or prep the plastic in any way. I sprayed Krylon Ultra Flat primer black on all parts while on the sprue on this kit. If I don't spray, I brush with "diluted with windshield washer fluid" craft paint. I use the "Karl O" technique of brushing on several thin coats, and in only one direction, which works great.

    Single page, vague directions. These kits and instructions have been made the same way for many years, so they appear to have never been updated or changed. Unfortunately, the minimal diagrams are not exact, and are artist drawings.

    The styrene can be already molded in black, white, brown, or even red.

    I wanted to keep the truck body black. I will use a light layer of a craft paint later. I scraped away any paint on all mating surfaces for cement to adhere to the pieces. If you brush on, you can glue up sub-assemblies, then paint those later.

    Dry brushed all raised edges with a light gray.

    Used the provided thin acetate for the windows, however the windshield is a thick piece of pre cut clear styrene. It barely covers the opening. Only a tiny drop of runny CA here.

    Painted the wheel spokes red. Touched the hub caps with silver. Also painted the radiator frame silver, and the seat was painted brown-red.

    The bed and stakes are molded in styrene, but I rebuilt it with real wood. I used the supplied styrene bed, but simply planked over it with 2x10.

    Copied the "stake" sides and ends dimensions with 2x2, 2x4 and 2x8.

    The cab body on Jordans is one of the most difficult to get together/mate properly. All five pieces must meet correctly. My procedure is against the order in the directions, but I prefer it. The corners of the walls are beveled, but they are not perfect. Very little glue surface here. Or anywhere else for that matter! Much sanding and dry testing is necessary. The roof on this one has indentations to accept the walls.

    All joints are held in my hands till the glue sets. No clamps or rubber bands are possible, and I have to be able to feel the exact amount of pressure needed and make any alignment adjustments. Also, I don't touch the piece after each wall is done for at least 5 minutes.

    First, I make sure the back wall is centered and glue it to the roof.

    Then a "door wall" is glued to the back and roof. The back wall is shorter than all the others to accept the frame piece, so its "top" matches the others at the roof line. Which is not clear in the directions....

    The other door wall.

    Finally, the front. At this point touch ups were done with Americana "Soft Black". Actually a deep brown black.

    Till next time, we'll finish it off....

  • #2
    Carl, it looks pretty good to me so far. This is one of my favorite Jordan kits, but then I am a truck fan. I found one on uTube, take a gander if you want. One day I might do an extended bed.

    forgot the link:
    Tony Burgess

    Exploring the unknown requires tolerating uncertainty.~ Brian Greene


    • #3

      This is an excellent tutorial. I've put a few Jordan kits together, and they can be tricky. I'm looking forward to the continuation of this thread, particularly the wheel/axle assembly with your jig.

      A couple questions - When do you use Pro Weld vs Testors liquid? Also, what size brush do you use to paint the spokes?

      Jeff S.


      • #4
        Great info, Carl. I have a half dozen Jordan kits in my stack of unbuilt kits, so I'm following this closely.

        The sky is not my limit, it's my playground.


        • #5
          Tony, Thanks for that link- it's cool !

          Jeff, Thank you, I use Pro Weld when I want a bond in less than 10 seconds, since its 95% methylene chloride. And it finds its way into the tiniest spots thru capillary action. Unfortunately it's over $5.00 for 2 oz. I am researching a cheaper substitute.

          The Testors needs 20 seconds to set, with its multitude of ingredients (it's 1/3 MEK), so that gives me more alignment time. And it stays where it's dropped.

          Also, I use a 10/0 brush for the tire spokes and other tiny parts.

          George, Yes I know about un-built inventory, but I have almost two dozen standing by! [:-sick]


          • #6
            Carl, you’re throwing me off by posting at 3:55pm. I’m used to the usual time around 8am.

            Hey thanks for the hints on the build should I ever build one of these I’ll have this as a guide since I’m including it in my fav’s. Talk about a tease!


            • #7
              Oops, sorry about that Frank...didn't mean to mess up your "schedule" ....

              Should you build one, just remember, it's all about the styrene with these buggers...[:-headache]


              • #8
                Very nicely done Carl. Looking good.

                I'm curious about your jig. One of the things that make or break a Jordan kit for me is if all four tires are on the ground.

                I'll be watching closely.

                In memory of Mike Chambers


                • #9
                  Thank you very much Ken!

                  It's great that you stopped by...I've learned a lot from your 3 part series- thanks!

                  I know the "4 tires on the ground" is a frustrating aspect of Jordans...

                  My jig will be in my next update- it's a simple thing, buy it sure does help!


                  • #10
                    Nicely done, Carl, nicely done indeed.

                    These little beasties are fabulous models, but be careful with the styrene cement; it eats them!


                    in Michigan


                    • #11
                      Thanks Mr. Magoun!

                      Agreed, once you're completely exhausted at the finish, they do turn out well...

                      I shall be careful with the cement, as I have experienced the magic "disappearing" styrene in the past! [:-censored]


                      • #12
                        It is coming along nicely, Carl, and I appreciated the build thread. I won't tell you how many of these kits I have on the shelf - and I have yet to build one. :erm:


                        • #13
                          Thank you Bruce, and you're welcome on the build thread.

                          A big pile of un-built Jordan kits is not unusual...

                          I hope you'll tackle one after I finish this up.


                          • #14
                            I glued down the seat to the base frame, and attached the steering wheel to column. The column already has a square base cast into it.

                            Once dry, glued steering column in front of seat. If you want a LP in there, now's your chance!

                            Attached hood and radiator (separate pieces) to front fender section.

                            Glued down the cab body over frame with seat and steering wheel inside. The cab walls fit over and around the front of the base.

                            Glued down wood covered payload onto frame.

                            The secret weapon. I built this jig to keep wheels and axles tight, aligned, and in place for the glue to set.

                            I glued 4 pieces of square stock to contain the wheels upright, and the axle will be supported to dry as well. Between 15 mm and 20 mm (distance from tire to tire) covers most of them.

                            I made several sets on a single 1 x 2 board. There are front and rear slots for cars and light trucks, and larger Jordan trucks. There are a few millimeter differences between all of them. A stop keeps the axle and the wheels square to each other.

                            I usually put the wheels on the axle, slide it in place, then drop some Ambroid Pro Weld onto the joint. Let it sit for at least 30 minutes.

                            Payload and cab now glued to front fender section.

                            Upside down to glue front axle with wheels, into the provided slot behind radiator. After using a slower setting glue (like Testors), I flip the model over and let it rest on a flat and level surface, allowing both wheels to touch. If they don't, I may drop a penny on top of the roof or payload to "settle it down".

                            Steering rods can be glued over this axle, but I can never see them, so I don't bother.

                            The rear axle gets a spring, which correctly adjust the height of these wheels, so it can't be skipped.

                            I'm using the jig to hold the axle and wheels still, so I can cement the spring on top.

                            Rear axle and wheels are glued in place and immediately set on level surface, I use a red ceramic tile. A touch of rust paint in random spots.

                            The finished truck with two neighbors I also finished, a 1929 Model AA Ford Tank Truck, and the 1923 Mack Tank Truck. Those have more parts and different assemblies, and require even more patience and careful construction.

                            A few final thoughts...

                            1. Some of the trucks/cars have a definite "lean" towards the front, meaning they are not level front to back.

                            2. I found I must be in a styrene "mode"... Admittedly, I am a "wood" guy, so these require a BENCH CLEARING from me. Actually, I build these in batches, in between my other work, not during.

                            3. Walking away from the kit- for a break of some minutes, hours, even days helps the eyes, back and nerves.

                            4. There is no rush to finish, take you're sweet old time.

                            Try your hand at a Jordan...Use the first as a test to get the "feel" of it, then your second should turn out much better. Then you can use the first as an abandoned jalopy in a junkyard!

                            Good Luck!


                            • #15

                              These are very nicely done, and I love the jig idea. I need to build one....

                              Or more....



                              in Michigan