A tube-framed Ferrari is a special thing indeed, as is this radio-controlled Ferrari 250 GTO built entirely by hand. The build is the work of a user known as Liumutou on Chinese video site Bilibili. In a video reposted to YouTube, we get to see his fine work up close.
Armed with a spot-welder more typically used for welding up battery packs, he sets about producing a tube-framed chassis fit for an Italian thoroughbred race car, albeit at smaller scale.
The finished chassis has a spine reminiscent of the "Power Plant Frame" in the original Mazda Miata, functioning suspension, and an exhaust system complete with smoke effects. Propulsion is thanks to an electric motor installed up front, which drives the rear wheels via a differential.
The bodywork is perhaps the most impressive part of the build. Beaten out of thin sheet metal, the construction methods are those that were mainstream in the middle of the 20th century. Shears and hammers combine to craft the car's elegant curves. The spot welder is once again pressed into service to join the panels together. Judicious amounts of solder are then used to cover the various slits and cuts in the sheet metal, aping the "lead sled" techniques used by hotrodders of the past. Plenty of sanding and filing and a layer of regular body filler are used to smooth the surface prior to paint.
The build is finished in a rich, glorious red, as is fitting for a classic Ferrari. From there, the final details are what really push the build over the edge. Fender vents, windows, and badges in the guise of the original go a long way, as do the tiny replica wipers and hood tie-downs. Perhaps the greatest feat is the headlights, with lenses that genuinely look like they're straight out of the 1960s, complete with aero covers intact.
A fine model is one thing, but this one is functional, too. It steers and drives, with working headlights, taillights, and indicators, too. The details look authentic, too, with the lights having a realistic quality, rather than looking like overly-bright LEDs in a cheap toy.
It's one thing to paint a nice plastic bodyshell for an off-the-shelf RC car. It's another thing entirely to build one from the ground up, let alone with a tube-framed chassis aping the racecars of yesteryear. The result is a piece of automotive art and a testament to the sheer skill of the builder.
Got a tip? Let the author know: [email protected]