Pictured to the right is the finished chassis. Its a good idea to check the alignment of the frame rails and cross members in order to avoid serious fitment issues of the upper hull later down the road.
Pictured above is the front of the chassis along with the front axle mount. We found the instruction booklet to be somewhat misleading during this step (and others) so be careful how you bend each piece and secure it to the main chassis frame. It is easy to get the front axle mounts mixed up. Use the front axle as a guide during this step.
The suspension mounts are of an ingenious design but can be tricky to bend and secure so proceed cautiously. There is a great deal of overlap with one component fitting inside of another and you only get two or three attempts at bending before the steel weakens and snaps.
In this shot the suspension mount has been secured to the main chassis and the boogie wheel swing arm has been mounted inside. We used M3 stainless screws to secure the mount to the chassis for a more accurate look. We will come back to this component later in the project build.
Our kit arrives in a large, flat shipping carton whereby the first step towards assembly of this kit is to inventory all of the sheet metal and resin parts. The sheet metal is cut from 18 gauge steel and begins to oxidize almost immediately here in the subtropics of the Sunshine State.
Once we had checked that all parts were present (and those that were not) we cleaned the sheet metal with acetone before applying several base coats of primer. Really important.
We repeated this process with the resin parts while taking a few moments to clean excess flash or casting imperfections from each part. This is fairly normal but casting quality is a bit dicey on some parts which will definitely affect fitment and appearance if you don't catch it early.
The chassis is a really ingenious design in our opinion and represents the backbone of the vehicle providing support and rigidity to the entire vehicle. There are two different ways that you can approach this part of the assembly. You could assemble the chassis according to the instructions with little, or no modification or you could take a more detailed approach by filling in all gaps and seams with epoxy. Whatever you decide remember that once you secure the upper body to the chassis there is no going back.