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8 hours ago, bradleygolding said:

On a point about the amount of detail that Airfix are now getting into their new 1/72 models. As much as seasoned modellers love it, trying to get my nine year old son to deal with it in one of their Starter Kits is very hard. If you can't complete the model, how can you get 'into' the hobby. This high level of detail makes for a very difficult baptism. The much simpler older models were a much better entry way in. I have resorted to buying older stuff 1960s and 70s from eBay.

 

If the new young modellers can't make your models, then who models in the future?

 

Steve

I think this is an extremely important point. If Airfix's latest CAD masterpiece is extremely fiddly to build, with crazy tight tolerances eroding the fun, a new modelor is going to be less likely to enjoy and fully get into the hobby. 

 

I also don't get why 1/72 is getting so complex from a profit point of view - why tie someone's limited modelling time up on one kit of complexity and tight tolerances, when a slightly simpler (I.e. quicker) build may retain more fun and have the customer dipping back into their pocket sooner?

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Have to agree with the above comments. Having been a handicraft teacher for some 33 years teaching all ability levels (11 -16 years) some of the new Airfix kits would put an awful lot of young people off due to the way they are put together. Tamiya kits in this respect are idiot proof.  As a starter kit, just keep it simple and let the young person build up their knowledge and manual dexterital skills as they build kits.

 

Just my :2c: from someone who used to teach these skills.

 

Dick

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34 minutes ago, Phil32 said:

I think this is an extremely important point. If Airfix's latest CAD masterpiece is extremely fiddly to build, with crazy tight tolerances eroding the fun, a new modelor is going to be less likely to enjoy and fully get into the hobby. 

 

I also don't get why 1/72 is getting so complex from a profit point of view - why tie someone's limited modelling time up on one kit of complexity and tight tolerances, when a slightly simpler (I.e. quicker) build may retain more fun and have the customer dipping back into their pocket sooner?

I think it's a combination of money, time, and a dwindling market. Perhaps Airfix have done the research and know that their market for new young modellers is tiny, so they have to produce more detailed, but affordable kits to satisfy older modellers?

 

Steve

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Disappointed that Airfix didn't give us a list of new tools, I was expecting at least four to match this years new issues 😞 the Blenheim looks very nice, and Wellington 😊 Airfix missed being star of the show, Revell didn't surprise any as well, so, the two main manufactures are, slowing down new tool production, so it seems😐 TamTrumpHas, didn't surprise anyone as well, sad as well, as they have in the past😊

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9 hours ago, bradleygolding said:

 As much as seasoned modellers love it, trying to get my nine year old son to deal with it in one of their Starter Kits is very hard. If you can't complete the model, how can you get 'into' the hobby. This high level of detail makes for a very difficult baptism. The much simpler older models were a much better entry way in. I have resorted to buying older stuff 1960s and 70s from eBay.

 

If the new young modellers can't make your models, then who models in the future?

 

Steve

It's not really rocket science you know. Don't give a youngster a kit way beyond his/her ability at the time. A challenge is good, just needs to be at the right level.  You wouldn't be expected to pass university exams in primary school, or build a house having just mastered plasticene.

 

My son started with simple Matchbox tanks, Heller bugs and so on. And stayed with the hobby, though when he was old enough to buy and choose for himself he sometimes bit off more than he could chew. It didn't hurt him, and I didn't hover over him. He's long adult now, a fine modeller in his own right.  The complicated kits  I was building and which have been around for decades never hurt him one bit

 

Shane

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There are still some new tool Airfix kits that are excellent candidates for youngsters - the Jet Provost T.3 springs to mind, with a low parts count and very good fit. 

 

I think what we might be saying here is there’s a clear market for kits that fit like the good old Matchbox kits, however could do with a little bit more finesse in the areas of panel lines, canopy thickness and quality of decals. 

 

Cheers.. Dave 

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I think I can safely say when I started in 2014 I had the skills no better than an average 9 year old and I was fine with the current gen of airfix kits, even managed some abortions of kits like the revel eurofighter. 

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7 hours ago, Shane said:

It's not really rocket science you know. Don't give a youngster a kit way beyond his/her ability at the time. A challenge is good, just needs to be at the right level.  You wouldn't be expected to pass university exams in primary school, or build a house having just mastered plasticene.

 

My son started with simple Matchbox tanks, Heller bugs and so on. And stayed with the hobby, though when he was old enough to buy and choose for himself he sometimes bit off more than he could chew. It didn't hurt him, and I didn't hover over him. He's long adult now, a fine modeller in his own right.  The complicated kits  I was building and which have been around for decades never hurt him one bit

 

Shane

My point is about their current and new 1/72 kits. Take the Mk 1 Spit for example, it has more parts and more detail that the late 1978? 1/48 Mk V did. My son has made two of these starter kits over the last couple of years, one with and the latest without my help. I made the starter kit Tiger Moth (starter kit? really Airfix) and it was the most fragile model I have ever had to assemble! He is also about 80% through the Revell Lancaster and doing a passable job, but once again lots of detail. At least it's made from real plastic and not a flower and water mix! The Lanc is not a starter I know, I mention it as an example that it's not just Airfix. This is why I suggested that they organize the sprues into quick built and added detail ones.

 

Steve

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1 hour ago, PhantomBigStu said:

I think I can safely say when I started in 2014 I had the skills no better than an average 9 year old and I was fine with the current gen of airfix kits, even managed some abortions of kits like the revel eurofighter. 

You had hand to eye coordination, lack of patience,  and motor skills of a 9 year old. I some how doubt that. No modelling skills I can believe.

 

Steve

Edited by bradleygolding

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Agree with comments above regarding ease of build, I am not sure that Airfix are sure of their target market. I love some of their recent kits but they can be a bit tricky. I'm an experienced modeller but found the Tiger Moth hard work and due to struts breaking it took two kits to make one finished product. That is not an appropriate kit to market as a starter set IMO. But they do produce some lovely models for we enthusiasts.

Cheers, Paul

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Had a chat with one of the designers at Airfixmtoday. He is fairly new to the company so did not have any input into the Fury, Phantom, B-25, Wellington etc. However he assures us he has been busy but absolutely would not be drawn on what other than we will like it. 

 

Watch this space it would seem. 

 

I looked at the testmshots of thenWellington and it does look very good.

 

julien 

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2 hours ago, bradleygolding said:

You had hand to eye coordination, lack of patience,  and motor skills of a 9 year old.

I'm an American in my thirties, so in my case, that would be absolutely true. 

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12 hours ago, Gerrardandrews said:

Disappointed that Airfix didn't give us a list of new tools, I was expecting at least four to match this years new issues 😞 the Blenheim looks very nice, and Wellington 😊 Airfix missed being star of the show, Revell didn't surprise any as well, so, the two main manufactures are, slowing down new tool production, so it seems😐 TamTrumpHas, didn't surprise anyone as well, sad as well, as they have in the past😊

Not every manufacturer can produce a new wizz bang kit every year, it just so happens that none of them did this year. Or maybe it is a reflection of the market? Airfix have made some very British choices of late and good on them, that's obviously where they see themselves with 80% of their kits and I hope that continues. It's a pity they were not the 'stars' of the show, in fact reading the comments here I'm not sure who was?

 

Steve

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"It's a pity they were not the 'stars' of the show, in fact reading the comments here I'm not sure who was?"

That's a good point Steve - on Friday night my time I was getting all excited about what would be announced at Telford, then completely forgot SMW was even on until this morning as there was no news that I noticed on Facebook from any manufacturer. I'm one of those who are guilty of expecting Airfix to announce something based on nothing more than past experience.

 

With Workbench I've come to expect drip-feed news throughout the year, as well as an announcement at Telford, visiting the Advent Calendar out of habit more than anything else. Maybe this year the calendar will have next year's Big One?

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For me the worst thing in Airfix models for beginners is extremely soft plastic. Cutting thinner pieces from sprues is a challenge even with some skill. So I can imagine how Tiger Moth assembly went with such plastic. On the other hand some simpler 1/72 kits such as Hurricane, Defiant, Skyhawk, Vampire (I have experience with those) do not pose big assembling challenges. Complex Wellington model - well - here Airfix had to decide whether they do less detailed kit similar to Trumpy or MPM or they do something very different with high level of interior detailing OOB to gain market. I think they did a perfect job here and I personally look forward their Wellington very much. And anyway bomber model is not something you could consider for a beginner...

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30 minutes ago, Dennis_C said:

For me the worst thing in Airfix models for beginners is extremely soft plastic. Cutting thinner pieces from sprues is a challenge even with some skill. So I can imagine how Tiger Moth assembly went with such plastic. On the other hand some simpler 1/72 kits such as Hurricane, Defiant, Skyhawk, Vampire (I have experience with those) do not pose big assembling challenges. Complex Wellington model - well - here Airfix had to decide whether they do less detailed kit similar to Trumpy or MPM or they do something very different with high level of interior detailing OOB to gain market. I think they did a perfect job here and I personally look forward their Wellington very much. And anyway bomber model is not something you could consider for a beginner...

Ah that Flour and Water Plastic! My favorite gripe about Airfix for the last 10 years?

 

Steve

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I had a look at the Wellington insides on the Airfix stand, amazing amount of detail crammed in, how about an extra fuselage half to display it? otherwise it mostly disappears. 

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1 hour ago, bradleygolding said:

Ah that Flour and Water Plastic! My favorite gripe about Airfix for the last 10 years?

 

Steve

My term was biscuity. I guess biscuits have a fair bit of flour & water in them. I'm with you on that. :)

Steve.

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2 hours ago, Dennis_C said:

For me the worst thing in Airfix models for beginners is extremely soft plastic. Cutting thinner pieces from sprues is a challenge even with some skill.

 

I agree with this, as I broke both the antenna and control stick on the 1/72 P-51D Mustang.

And, has anyone ever tried making 'stretched sprue' from an Airfix runner?

It simply does not work!

Apart from these minor issues, I'm a dedicated follower of Airfix releases, have just bought the 1/72 Me-262 and now I'm waiting for the B-25.

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I had the same problem with the P-51 aerial and also the Brownings off their 1/72 Defiant. 

 

Trevor 

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3 minutes ago, Max Headroom said:

I had the same problem with the P-51 aerial 

 

Trevor 

I've now got 3 airfix P-51 boxing open, but have been unable to salvage a single aerial 😭

 

Phil

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33 minutes ago, Roman Schilhart said:

 

I agree with this, as I broke both the antenna and control stick on the 1/72 P-51D Mustang.

And, has anyone ever tried making 'stretched sprue' from an Airfix runner?

It simply does not work!

Apart from these minor issues, I'm a dedicated follower of Airfix releases, have just bought the 1/72 Me-262 and now I'm waiting for the B-25.

I just did the very same thing last night with the P-51 antenna.  It was impossible to separate in one piece.  I had to make a new one from plastic card.  I also broke the control stick but it was repairable.  The sprue gates are very wide on such tiny pieces. 

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25 minutes ago, Meatbox8 said:

I just did the very same thing last night with the P-51 antenna.  It was impossible to separate in one piece.  I had to make a new one from plastic card.  I also broke the control stick but it was repairable.  The sprue gates are very wide on such tiny pieces. 

Any delicate parts I remove from the sprue gates with a hot knife so as to not damage anything.

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2 hours ago, bradleygolding said:

Ah that Flour and Water Plastic! My favorite gripe about Airfix for the last 10 years?

 

Steve

Whatever happened to airfix relocating production to the UK from India for higher quality, they did with the 1/48th p-40 and 72nd swordfish but it seems to have been dropped, even the new 2017 tools are produced in India .

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I use a small precision side cutter for electronics, that works pretty well normally.

It leaves a bigger chunk on the parts that can normally be easily cut off by a small scissor.

 

Tho I don't have the new Airfix 1/48 P-51 so I am not sure if it would help with the problem some described above..

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