Model of Westley's Texaco, built by David Westley in December 2006
Cardboard Mockup of Texaco Model
In 1989, I built a model of my grandparents Texas farm house. I wanted my
children and grandchildren to see what the 1911 Texas farm house looked like. Even though I had old photographs of the
actual house, I felt a model would give a better "picture" of what the real farm house was like. I also wanted to
tell them stories of my visits to the farm and the many fond memories I had of my grandparents, aunts and uncles, and other
relatives. Building the farm house model brought back many memories from my childhood. Photographs of the Gaston farm
house and my model are displayed at http://www.norwegianwest.com/gastonfarm.
In November 2006, I was inspired to
build a model of my dad's 1950s Texaco gas station. I was not sure I was up to the chore! I begin work on it December
2, 2006 and basically "completed" the project in late January 2007. I made some additions and changes to the
model in January 2008. (Click on "Texaco Model 2008" in the Menu)
I wanted the model to be portable and not too large. I wanted it to be close to
a scale where 1:24 scale model cars and trucks could be used with it. I began with a large piece of cardboard and drew each
side of the building as it looked from the 5" x 7" 1955 photograph I had, and from memory. I used
a 1:24 scale plastic 1951 Chevrolet car model from my grandparents farm house model set up, to help estimate dimensions
and comparative size for the station bay openings. After several drawing changes, I cut out the windows and doors and bay
openings in a cardboard mockup. (photo above)
I had to make adjustments to the cutouts to try to get reasonable looking proportions.
I then took measurements from the cardboard mockup. I purchased two pieces of 2 feet by 4 feet, ½ inch sanded plywood
and two pieces each of 3/8” x 3” by 24” and 3/8” x 6” by 24” of solid finished pine.
I cut out the four sides for the building from the plywood, then drew the openings on the plywood and cut that out
with a jig saw and hand sanded. I have no special tools, just a small table saw, jig saw, hand saw, wood rasp, sand paper,
hammer, nails, screws, glue and paint.
Texaco model and base are ½” plywood. The windows are plexiglas, framed with and trimmed with large kitchen matchsticks.
The awning on the front is made from popsicle sticks. Nearly everything is painted with Rust-oleum oil base paint or Testors
model paint on accessories, with two coats of paint. For assembly, I used Quick Grip all purpose permanent adhesive and Duro
QuickGel super glue and I used some small nails and a few small screws. The grease rack is made from several pieces of thin
brass metal strips that I cut and super glued to make the two small I-beams and glued to a small piece of aluminum. The gas
pumps are wooden with printed images glued to the wood using Elmer’s glue. The gas pump reset cranks are just small
nails bent to look like small cranks and the gas pump black hoses are black wire insulation from copper house wiring with
a piece of the copper wire on the end as a gas nozzle. The Coke and Pepsi-cola drink boxes are made of wood with printed decals
glued on, as is the ice cream box. The office furniture and contents are wood as most of the equipment
is made of wood. The water hose is copper wire insulation and the small air hoses are just small gauge wire. The
Texaco red letters on the upper left of the building face are soft foam-like stick on letters and the wooden stars, I bought
and painted red and glued to the building. The green pin stripping around the upper part of the building was made with a green
ballpoint pen. The letters for Charles Westley’s name, MARFAK LUBRICATION and WASHING, I printed on clear plastic Mylar
and cut and pasted on the building face. In 2008, I replaced the Mylar letters with painted raised letters. Charles
Westley’s name was abbreviated on the building as “CHAS. WESTLEY”. I do not know why they
abbreviated the name. But, I did the name on the model exactly as it appeared on the actual Texaco station
when it was built.
I am not sure of the exact amount of time or expense for the material to make the Texaco model.
Most of it was completed during the month of December 2006. Some days I would work on it for 2 or 3 hours and for a few days,
5 or 6 hours each day; and some days not at all. I estimate about 90 to 100 hours work in the station model and all the accessories,
equipment, etc. I estimate the cost of materials actually used for the model, around $80. Much of the material used came
from from scrap pieces of wood, plastic, wire, etc.
I purchased a diecast metal model of a 1953 Ford
Texaco gasoline truck, a detailed replica from http://www.joesriverviewtoys.com and a 1995 Oldsmobile metal model kit from Hobby Lobby and a 1955 Chrysler
metal model from Walmart. In 2008, I purchased a black 1949 Mercury diecast model and a blue 1958 Chevrolet Impala diecast
model (both 1:24 scale). I hope to use these cars in a new series of photos of the model.
Working on this model Texaco station brought back a lot
of memories. It has been over 46 years since I last worked at that Texaco service station in Clifton, Texas. There were some
days I worked 10 hours or more. I sometimes opened and closed the station. It was long hours, low pay, and a lot of “free
I hope you enjoyed
reading about Westley’s Texaco. If anyone has any old photographs of Westley's
Texaco, I would appreciate seeing them. Thank you.
Authentic replica of a 1953 Ford Texaco tanker truck
Constructing the Texaco model was a lot of fun. It brought back many memories of the 1950s and early
1960s. The Texaco model was constructed in December 2006, but some changes and additions were made to the model in January
2008. See "Texaco Model 2008" listed in the Menu for additional photographs of the model as it appeared in January
The 1953 Ford Texaco Tanker truck, diecast metal model, is not the actual scale needed for
the Texaco model, but the truck is believed to be very similar to one used to deliver Texaco gasoline in the 1950s.