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The Uncommon Model Making of Jonathan Valadez

Craig Fitzgerald

If you grew up at a certain time, there was a good chance that you snapped an MPC or Monogram model kit together at some point. The finished result generally takes on a surreal appearance, due to our poor early model-making skills and the heady aroma of the Testor’s Model Glue. Anybody can build a Camaro or a Mustang– Jonathan Valadez got started that way, too, but now he’s building incredible models of cars for which the big model companies don’t even build kits.

“I have been building scale models since I was 5-6 years old starting with JoHans 1979 Cadillac Coupe DeVille, and it has been a love ever since,” says Jonathan. Since then, he’s been building kits and partial kits that you can’t find at places like Walmart or the Hobby Lobby. “Some kits are full kits, while others are donor kits to make a kit already made into something else,” he says.

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1985 Impala Kit

Wagon Kit

His two primary suppliers of kits are Missing Link Resin Casters from Detroit, and the Modelhaus in Decatur, Illinois. “They range from $50 to $125 UNBUILT. The material that is used is called resin, it is vary easy to work with and these kits are the best in the industry,” he says.

Kits in Progress

Jonathan’s models are intricately painted and polished when he’s finished assembly. All of his supplies can be found at box stores or online, he says.

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Galaxie 1
Galaxie 2 rear

Reigniting a passion for model building? “Find a cheap or free model kit and practice on that,” Jonathan advises. “I dove right in with lacquer paint using Plasti Kote primer first.”

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“Just like anything else, take your time, don’t rush, make sure the environment is clean and warm for painting,” he adds. “and learn from your mistakes.”


Caprice Interior

Caprice 3

For more information on the model kits, we’ve provided links for both Missing Link Resin Casters and the Modelhaus.

Image Source: www.modelhaus.com