Adam 12 police AMC Matador 1/14 scale radio control

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New Member
I got in with a group of people running 1/14 scale radio control realistic models of mostly Trucking and Construction equipment. There are meets all over the country and world where we'll usually setup a city, mine sites, farms, warehouses... I like tv and movie stuff, i like cars, there aren't many people that model emergency equipment, and i already had my dads old cop car out in the barn.

This is a 1972 AMC Matador sedan black & white 'Adam 12'. Originally built by Cox as a gas powered free run car with interchangable steering cams that made it drive patterns.




Stripped chassis

She may not be the new Bluesmobile, but at least the lighter works.

Always start with the REALLY important work!
No, not ordering servos, a speed control, an rx, a battery, a rear end, or a sound thing, not even buying paint.

Bore lens mount into passthrough holes for led, make intersecting tiny hole from base into light base. Grab magnet wire, (mine came from a stock jeep speaker) scrape ends and tin. Poke through tiny hole and out a big hole. Grab a red and yellow 3mm LED, file off the rim at base, trim short - leads for approx 1/2" oal. Solder short leads together. Take long leads + trim shorter, then put around 45 deg angle. Tack onto magnet wire, mark car side of wire with sharpie or something. I did Black to ground, red to red light, no mark for yellow. Test. Put new LED pokey-bit assembly into the modified pokey-bit receptical. Test again.
Eventually you run out of swear words, so that must mean it works.


Then you can just modify the rest of the body, throw on some leds, and wire it up in harnesses.


Take the non-running car to a meet to check scale

Then just send some parts back with a guy at the meet, and when your wheel adapters show back up you can magically make the chassis rc.

Posts getting long, so i'll let you off with a warning this time.

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Sr Member
Awesome. I love Adam 12. Actually when my son was 5 or so, he really got into Adam 12. They would play two episodes back to back when I got home from work, so we would sit and watch together. My sons idol was Pete Maloy. I thought I would try to contact Martin Milner to tell him about my boy and how much he looked up to him. He was Pete for two Halloweens in a row. Anyhow, I tracked him down and he was very happy to hear about his young fan. He sent him a signed photo:

It arrived just in time for his birthday. He loved it! Martin Milner died two weeks later.
Sorry to hijack your awesome post! Adam 12 is a great show and I have always wanted to do a model of their car(s). Yours looks awesome. Great tribute.


New Member
That's an awesome story! I'm amazed you were able to make that happen. I hope he knew how much that ment to your son.

With the reruns we got, i was always really into Dragnet and Highway Patrol.

So at this point i had a runner on a 6 ch radio, without many features yet.

I got the headlights circuit working by using a servoboard as a switch, then hotglue mounted wiring to body, cut wiring to size, reterminated. Didn't have enough cheap servos to set up the roof lights yet.

Patrolling the warehouse district

1adam12, 1adam12 vehicle accident with roll-over, entrapment.


An awesome looking brushfire rig responded with me to the incident. (Sure wish there were an ambulance available too, but that guy is a slacker...)


What else might an early '70s police car pull over?

More electrical work going on, nothing too flashy happening until the next meet

Fuel up at beginning of shift

Slow shift turns into a rainy night...



Control, 1-Adam-12, back in service.

Ok so i let my Ambulance steal the show there. it's got a much more impressive lighting setup, and since i run both of them from the same transmitter i couldn't power up both recievers.
Besides the ambulance may need to leave in a hurry, while Adam-12 would be out of service on the scene until the incident was over and paperwork was done. The American LaFrance is still just a static model.

At one point during the shift there was a police chase involving a blue Semi that was going on a rampage. The chase ended without incident when the perpitrators father took the transmitter away from him and took him into custody.

Then i posted it up over at Cox Engine forums to see what they thought, and they had a car contest that pushed me to keep working on it.

The whole time i've had the car, I'd been bummed about the ruined white paint, but i found out Iso-alcohol got the old gas schmoo cleaned off pretty easily.

So in celebration, it got chromed wiper arms. Then since the best looking cop car wheel setup for a Black&White is and has always been black steelies with dogbowls/babymoons and beauty rings, i added the set of chrome rings.


I also knocked together a rear 'strut-tower brace', which is more of a rear body support and package tray visible through the back window.

Yes i know the 1-Adam-12 Matador didn't run beauty rings on the steelies. They also ran the black 727 can lights so it didn't reflect cameras, and didn't have LED lighting.


I'd finally ordered some sirens from Evan Designs. I'm happy to be able to know for sure the "9v" option works great off a 7.2 stick pack. I then put it on 4.5 - 6v rx voltage, works great! It will still take an RX Switch and a Servo to run the Police siren fully remote. It has a momentary button to toggle sirens, Adam 12 can use the siren in mode 2 or 4. All the sounds in sequence (1) and phaser (3) just don't fit early 70s american cops. A 'Police siren' will also be getting installed in the Econoline Ambulance, all sounds will work without it being too weird for that vehicle. Evan Design
I'm calling it close enough to a Federal Signal PA20A.


this is the wire harness it takes to run the body lights.

Chassis layout.



Cox boat anchor

Siren is a black chip, speaker, push button. It now has its own control servo since i wasn't feeling like trying to make a control circuit. Power tapped off the RX bus with 2 pin servo lead. Knocked together a styrene switch holder, bonded to servo case, set the epa to lightly go clicky. Toggle switch D down/up to advance through settings On/off switch is mounted in the package tray. Fwd is on. Body lights on th channel, up is on Roof lights on sw B, down is on. This way car turns on dark, light controls come together for On

I kinda think i'd like to put in a switch to let me run Screen Accurate or Deviate from screen accurate with the roof lights. Adam 12 had the Reds turn on solid, but now days wig-wag is better understood and is a whole lot better at getting attention.


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Master Member
Love the conversion! There´s a huge convention once a year over here in Germany called InterModell, they usually have a large area dedicated to RC construction vehicles, setting up a building site and having all kinds of vehicles emulate real working scenarios. Great hobby, and your Adam 12 car sure fits in well! Did you implement a speaker system for making announcement or tell the guy in the truck right in front of you to pull over because he has a non-working tail light?! ;)

Unfortunately most of your images aren´t showing up, at least on my end.

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Sr Member
Love what you did to that old model to bring it up to date and still able to run. For me Adam-12 was THE COP SHOW! I remember watching it as a kid and recently watching some of the reruns realized how spot on they were with there stories and what police had to deal with in the turbulent times of the 60's and 70's.


New Member
Looks like in second post i screwed up my markup stuff, and can't edit. Hopefully i can edit soon, otherwise i'll have to start that one all over.

Oh yeah! i've spent a lot of time watching intermodel show videos, and videos from many other trucker haus locations. Most of the people at our meets tend to run stuff like Tamiya semi trucks, hydraulic excavators, Bruder toy conversions, or stratch built stuff. The usa shows aren't as big, but there are some pretty good sized ones, or there are local groups that meet more often. But not a lot seem to even know it's a thing.

My speaker is just for the siren. I have had a few people try to convince me to install another sound system for audio like dispatch or something.

I always heard they took real cases and modified them into shows, with great technical direction from the police. It certainly was interesting times to try to keep the peace.


New Member
Stock these aren't the most impressive cars

Lights & siren

Throttle epa backed down to 40% and my camera man is not used to working with rc cars

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