Building drag car's has been a real joy for me over the past few years. As a avid aircraft builder for most of my time in the hobby, building drag car's is a refreshing change of pace. I find that before I start on a project, I like to find as many pictures of the real car as I can. One thing I have found is that these cars often ran with slight diffrences each race. Sometimes the tires were Firestone, other times Goodyear. Since alot of these car's were ran in the 1960's and 70's, there are not alot of detail pictures avalible. In this case you must use some artistic freedom and build the car as you might think it would look. Getting as close to the real car is your goal, and trying to represent the car down to every correct nut and bolt can be daunting and overwhelming.
After picking out my subject, I like to find the base kit. Then I begin to look for other parts I will need to get it to look like the car at hand. If I can't find decals I make them. There are some things that i want in the look of the finished product that are very important for me. The biggest is the stance of the car. if it's a 1970's Pro stock, I like it to look low and fat, I try to get the car to appear "heavy" and to get that look the chassis must be reworked to get it down to where the car looks mean. Funny car's of the period also need a certain stance. Alot of Funny Car models sit too high on the chassis and some cutting and sanding is required to get them nice and tight. Gasser's are a diffrent story, as with AWB car's they tend to sit on the high side and can be adjusted to get the clearance you may be looking for. After getting the stance you want then you need to start dry-fitting eveything else. You will find more often than not that after you have made changes to the chassis, you will need to do some trimming on the interior bucket, engine mounts, roll cage, and so on.
This being my first review, I will follow up with other writings breaking down how I build each segment of a car to get the final product that I first invisioned when I started. Keep in mind, it's only a model and don't let others tell you it's not right, your building it for you, and if you like it than it can't be wrong!