Monday, 30 July 2012

The Conundrum Carriage



In 1906 Rolls Royce produced four chassis to be shown at the Olympia Car Show; one of which 40/50h.p. would go on to become the 'Silver Ghost' - "the best car in the world" according to AutoCar in 1907.  Unknown to all Charles Stewart Rolls, a good friend of Holmes, had been working on several secret prototypes one of which was to travel with the esteemed Consulting Detective to the United States America.   




The madness that is the 'secret project' continues apace with the introduction of the 'Conundrum Carriage'.  More often than not it was the breaking down of the Mystery Machine, whilst the gang was returning from some worthy youth festival or the like, that led to 'those meddling kids' solving yet another supernatural mystery.  It seemed logical then, that Holmes, 'Shaggy' Watson and Baskerville would also need some form of transport to get them to and from their own adventures, thus the 'Conundrum Carriage' was conceived.


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I wanted to convey the idea that the 'gang' had been on the road for a while, constantly having to adapt their carriage as they went along.  Given that this was at the earliest onset of automotive development it was also clear that running repairs would have to be undertaken by nonspecialists, often relying on the skills of the local blacksmith.


A quick scout around 'fleabay' turned up an old Matchbox model of an early Rolls Royce 'Silver Ghost' for a couple of pounds, but try as I might I couldn't dislodge images of the Clampetts' Oldsmobile truck from the Bevely Hillbillies or the Arkansas Chuggabug from the Wacky Races and soon the project descended into utter folly.



A tow chain was attached to the front along with evidence of bumped and damaged bodywork roughly repaired with plates and rivets.  The 'gang's' worldly possessions and souvenirs were now been carried snail like on the back including a hurriedly constructed kennel for Baskerville, who had started the tour as a puppy but was growing so fast that his new accommodation had to fashioned across the back seats. 
A good rummage around the bits box led to all manner detritus been offered up and if it fitted it went in!  Balsa wood was used for Baskerville's kennel with a 'Renedra Plastics' picket fence, 'Empress Miniatures' Zulu shield, weapons, packs and ammo box, some 'Ainsty Castings' barrels and boxes and a rack of ribs to give Baskerville a tasty snack for the journey!




Once all was literally roped together and glued to a base it was given a generous spray with black undercoat and the fun really started!  As a homage to the original series I wanted the colours to match those of the original Mystery Machine and so the ludicrously bright paint job is now attributed to  'Shaggy' Watson's late night experiments with moonshine as a possible alternative to petrol!  The whole thing was such a wonderful diversion from everything else that was on the table that I would constantly find myself returning to it to add a few bits here and there, examples being the oil lamp, doctor's bag and top hat, all from 'Black Cat Bases', that I came across whilst looking for something completely different!  


Now all I need to do is find something for the gang to investigate!





57 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Thank you Mike, that is very kind of you.

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  2. Great bloody work but for some reason I was thinking "Chitty-Chitty-Bang-Bang".

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    1. Thank you Fran; I knew I had forgotten something - wings!

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  3. Ditto the Dark Templar!!

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    1. That is very kind but plenty of inspiration comes from your fabulous site Jay.

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  4. NOW I get it!

    Where is the brainy bespecticled blue stocking and the red head?

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    Replies
    1. They have certainly been considered and may yet make an appearance at some point.

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  5. Totally insane but brilliant :)

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  6. Wow - fantastic conversion. The accompanying figures and dog are also superb. Best, Dean

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    1. Thank you Dean, I really appreciate that.

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  7. Brilliant!!!! Ít reminds me of something that would take part in the wacky races.
    Cheers
    paul

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, certainly inspired by them Paul.

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  8. Excellent vehicle!!!!! It looks like its out of Wacky Races!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Ray, the Arkansas Chuggabug has a lot to answer for!

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  9. Best (and most totally random) conversion ever! I'm already looking forward to the film version.

    Regards,
    Matt

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    1. That is really kind of you Matt; a film version would certainly be fun!

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  10. Now this is certainly something! Imagine it rolling in front of you on the highway.

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    1. Thank you and I would definitely want to give it a wide berth!

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  11. This is a whole lot of awesome! I love it. I've also discovered the joys of Matchbox's 'Yesteryear' range - they are such a great fit with the larger 28mm castings and they have scads of models to choose from. The picket fence and Zulu shield just kill me...

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    1. Thank you Curt, they really are fun to play with, the problem is they become very addictive.

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    2. I know... I'm embarrassed to say how many I've picked up on ebay in the past few months. If you're interested check out Rio Models (out of Italy). They are in 1/43 scale as well. I find they are a little more upmarket to the Matchbox range and have some great stuff in their catalogue. I'll be posting one up in the next few days, if you're interested.

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    3. Nooooo! I wish you hadn't put me onto those, a little more expensive, but much more interesting models!

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  12. Fantastic Michael!
    What a nice blending of colours!

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    1. Thank you Thanos, great fun to do after all those muted Boers!

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  13. This thing has genius written all over it. I really do admire your clean work as much as your choice of subjects.

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    1. Thank you so much, that is very kind of you to say so.

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  14. THAT IS ABSOLUTELY, FRICKING AMAZINGLY, AWESOME WANT ONE!

    Seriously well done nice original idea and painted to an excellent standard!

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    1. Thank you, really good fun to do se if you can pick up one of these (http://28mmvictorianwarfare.blogspot.co.uk/2012/02/reverend-otto-witts-carriage.html) for your EotD.

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    2. Already borrowed One arrived in the post Saturday ;-)

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    3. Excellent! Can't wait to see what you do with it.

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  15. This is a great example of the level of artistry, skill and creativity that goes into this hobby. And when all of those things come together at a high level, we see pieces like this spring from a man's imagination. Bloody brilliant Michael.

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    1. Aw shucks Anne, you'll make me blush! Thank you very much for such kind words, this level of support and the wonderful sense of community help to foster creativity in all of us.

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  16. Sooo very fun! I love it! Looks like it was a lot of fun to build too.

    so when will we see Velma & Daphne?

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    1. Thank you, it really was a blast to do. As for Velma & Daphne, they will have to make an appearance at some point.

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  17. Thats´great!! :O

    You could use it in Stange Aeons too!!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you, I really must investigate this Strange Aeons a bit more sounds like great fun.

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  18. A great conversion, fantastic painting work, and the choice of colours is...strange and impressive! Congrats!

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  19. Replies
    1. That is very kind of you Dave, on with the location of the first mystery!

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  20. Absolutely bloody marvelous!

    I can see this working with perhaps GASLIGHT, Strange Aeons or Empire of the Dead.

    Love the idea of it.

    Funnily enough the way you described the hound growing up, put me in mind of those two Londoners who adopted a lion cub, then took it to Africa once it had got too big for them, and it recognized them once they returned to see it again much later on. Born Free and all that... sorry if that was a bit out of left field...

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  21. Thank you Scott, as for Born Free it would certainly aid the longevity of the project:

    Holmes and Watson return to find Baskerville surrounded by an adoring family of puppies, the 'secret project', the next generation!

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    1. Excellent idea... now you just have to find suitable models for the puppies! Now there's a challenge!

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  22. Magnificent!!! Stunning stuff Michael.

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  23. Are you kidding me!!!!!!!!!Amazing stuff, Michael

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  24. Thank you Gentlemen, that is very kind of you.

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  25. I think you have outdone even yourself with this one!

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  26. Wow, I cannot stop smiling whe. I think of how much joy you must have gotten out of building such a unique and inspired piece. Thank you, it made my day.

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    1. That is very kind of you Bill, it really was such a blast to do.

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  27. Blimey, top work there, looks really fun.

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    1. Thank you Phil, hugely entertaining.

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  28. Brilliant conversion of this car!!!! And I like Scooby doo to :-D

    Greetings
    Peter
    http://peterscave.blogspot.be/

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