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AMT 1/25 scale 1953 Ford pickup “Modified Stocker Hauler” Gulf plastic model kit review

Still popular, this AMT old-timer shows its age
Kit:AMT1310 // Scale:1/25 // Price:$46.99
Round 2
Two full kits in one; two engine choices; many build options; extra parts
Considerable cleanup; warped parts; short-shot parts
Injection-molded plastic (white, clear, chrome-plated); 239 parts (metal axles; black vinyl tires); decals
First released in 1971 as a combo kit, the AMT 1/25 scale Gulf 1953 Ford F-100 pickup modified stocker hauler is back thanks to Round 2. It's a repop of an old kit, so be prepared for the cleanup that will be involved, especially on the trailer. Despite this, both kits in this box have been consistently popular when reissued.

Per the instructions, the pickup can be built one of three ways, but if you get creative with the variety of parts in the box, you can come up with several combinations.

The instruction format is typical of early AMT kits with exploded views, part numbers, and part names. Describing parts by name is a benefit not found in many newer kit instructions and is always nice to see.

First up, choose either the stock flathead or the Chrysler Hemi engine. The Hemi can be built with an injected or carbureted intake system—I went with the carburetor. Both engines build up well. The instructions say not to use the fan on the Hemi, but there is plenty of room, so I installed it.

The kit provides the frame, axles, and exhaust as separate components, which surprised me. The frame is one piece to alleviate alignment worries. Although the kit uses metal axles, thankfully, there is no hole through the engine.

Two sets of tires are included with different widths, whitewalls, and treads. You can warp them around either stock or chrome reversed wheels. It was wider tires and deep-dish wheels for me. Unfortunately, they would not fit inside the fenders, so I removed some plastic from them and deepened the hole in the wheel mounting bosses. Choose between two styles of bumper or roll pans if you build the custom version.

The cab, floor, bed, and hood come as separate items. You’ll attach one of two types of fenders to the bed, and the tailgate is posable. Molded wood grain details the bed floor, on top and underneath, but it is unfortunately marred by ejector-pin marks.

I needed to shim the rear of my bed to get it parallel to the cab back. I also found attaching the bed securely to the frame a fair amount of work. Make sure the rear bumper clears the trailer hitch.

A single part includes the running boards and interior floor. The basic cab has lightly molded inner door panels and handles. The seat, dash, steering column, and wheel round out the interior, but there are no gauge decals — a strange oversight since the decal sheet has been improved upon for this release.

The one-piece glass insert fits well. The hood mounts to the cab with a metal hinge clip, but I could not get the clip to bite the plastic, so I left it off. Because the pickup pulls a trailer, I used the West Coast-style mirrors.

You can’t fault the kit for the workshop full of accessories, including a jack, fire extinguisher, welding tanks, hand tools (but no toolbox), air horns, roof marker lights, two-way radio, and more. Your spares box will thank you.

Turning to the trailer, the first issue I noticed was the warped fender ends on both axles. Luckily, the plastic was robust enough to allow me to slowly bend them back into position, with no heat required. If you run into this, I recommend contacting Round 2 to see if you can get replacements.

The single-piece frame was straight, but in my sample, the top bar (Part 820) was short shot (only partially molded). Enough of the part existed to let me use a plastic pin to attach it.

The three body panels used butt joins to attach to each other and the frame. I reinforced these with polystyrene angle. If you care what the bottom side of the trailer looks like, you’ll need to fill and sand the many ejector-pin marks found there.

A pair of two-piece plastic race tires are included for the trailer rack. The wheels have the lug nuts and center cover molded on; I drilled them out. There are eight U-shaped parts, unmentioned in the instructions, that I never could identify.

Four vinyl, whitewall tires on wheels are connected with metal axles. If you use the safety chains, they will lock the truck and trailer in a straight line.

Although I did not use any of the expanded decal sheet markings on this model, I did apply them to a spare car body. They laid down nicely and looked good, but I was disappointed with the lack of license plates, again, something Round 2 has done well in offering with its improved decal sheets.

Between the F-100 pickup and the trailer, I spent almost 70 hours at the workbench on these kits. Two-thirds of the time was spent performing cleanup and painting. This kit should be approached by a skilled builder who has experience. The result can look sharp and make an excellent addition to your racing collection, but the trip to get there will be challenging. The AMT 1/25 scale 1953 Ford pickup “Modified Stocker Hauler” still proves to be a popular offering. Thanks to Round 2 for bringing it back again.
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