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Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom

Reviewed by:   Tony F Perrone
     
  Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car
 
 
 

When DM released their new “Squarebird” in 2005, it exemplified the styling and grace of the real car. A 1958 model year convertible in Monarch Blue with white top, it was roundly cheered by us collectors. Their 1959 rendition’s were issued as well as a 1958 coupe between ’05 and ‘07. The gorgeous tooling is a natural to replicate one of the most famous squarebird’s of all time; Larry Watson’s Starbird Hall of Fame ’58 coupe. Watson made a name for himself in painting pinstripes, scallops and flame jobs on cars as a teenager. But when he bought this new ’58 four-seat bird he garnered much attention and media praise for its uniqueness in paint styling.

He sprayed the car an expensive platinum pearl but wasn’t satisfied with the ‘look’. A couple days afterward he decided to mask off the panels and overspray it with a deep purple plum color and highlight the contrasting color changes with lavender pinstriping. It gave rise to the term, “panel painting”. But Larry wasn’t finished. The whole car was lowered, treated to lakes pipes, Dodge Lancer wheel covers, painted mesh grill, bullets on the front bumper and rear taillights and capped off with twin spotlights. His interior was left stock. The car has since been totally restored and accurately modeled by DM down to the last detail.

The Danbury boys did their usual great job of model magic slight-of-hand. It takes less and less imagination to believe this is the real object. I’m certain the 1:24th scale custom would make Larry Watson proud of his original creation and DM’s recreation in miniature. The paint is flawless on my #840. The glossy shine is a foot deep and the color breaks between platinum and grape are perfection. But get out the magnifiers folks because the pinstripe in lavender that separates them is spectacular! And someone at the plant spent way too much time waxing this beauty; they’re sure to ask for a raise. Danbury lowered their previous ’58 tooling and the car achieves that low-rider look. There’s sparse room between street pavement and side pipes. Oh so sweet!

The pipes are carried out just the way Larry envisioned them, breaking out along the side while flowing rearward beneath the car and exiting as long twin chrome extensions. The Mint added those nice period touches I mentioned, bullet bumpers, taillights and painted mesh grillwork. The Dodge Lancer wheel covers are in place and so is all that chrome dressing up the big V8. The wiring, hoses, fuel lines and washer bag add a nice touch of realism under the big hood. The interior is awash in detail as well. The internally-hinged door opens to show off the black and white bucket seats. They fold forward to allow a better view of the rear. Tiny coat hooks are evident, all gauges look good and console, door panels and floor pedals display great detail.

The trunk has a fixed and well-detailed jack and tire tool but the spare comes out. It has the simulated ‘hold down’ mechanism crafted to it. The Tartan floor mat looks real. And speaking of real, DM fashioned up a miniature California plate just like the genuine article affixed to Mr. Watson’s ride. He sure customized a beautiful little T-Bird back then and DM sure did the same with their ’58 replica.

(07/23/2008)
 
 
  Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom diecast car

 
 
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Danbury Mint | 1:24
Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom

Danbury Mint 1:24 1958 Ford Thunderbird Coupe- Watson Custom

 
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