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About HMSLion

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    NAS Pax River, MD

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  1. I think that a reasonably strong case could be made for a prepaid subscription model. You pay your money up front, get the kit (or a refund if it falls through) if there is enough interest.
  2. This is true. The questions I'd be looking at would be: 1. Can I crowdsource any of the research or CAD design? 2. Can the capital be crowdsourced?
  3. No, you have to pick a subject that nobody else has done and will sell enough kits to turn a net profit. Or a subject that has been done, but which you can do sufficiently better to warrant tossing the old kits and buying yours. Kindly note that the Chinese makers have been doing truckloads of prototype and low-production AFVs.
  4. I'd buy a 1/72 Javelin, and two 1/72 Sea Vixens. Having said that, I think the upcoming Spitfire XIV will sell quite well. But what I notice is that a lot of the online wish lists often feature kits that would be enormous when built. I'm a firm believer in the Rule of 225 (or 1600, in Metric). An assembled model must fit into a rectangle of 225 square inches (or 1600 square cm). 15x15. It means that 1/48 is good for Second World War single-engine aircraft and most twins...for a 4-engine bomber, it's really not a good scale (though you might use it for consistency). Jets after 1960 do well in 1/72...in 1/48, they are just too large. I've seen a P-51 Mustang parked next to an F-18B Hornet, and the Mustang is about half the size in every dimension. A model has to be scaled realistically. I'll add that it pays to go where the competitors aren't. Do the kits the other companies don't do. No, Company A's Me-109 doesn't make money for Company B, but Company B's Me-109 loses money unless it sells well. And the 109 market is pretty saturated.
  5. Rumor? No. Speculation? I would not be surprised to see Hasegawa offer a Kawasaki P-1. A 1/72 P-8. I'd like to see more 1/700 First World War dreadnoughts. Frankly, most Second World War subjects have been done to death - and the argument that Company A's Mustang doesn't make money for Company B omits the fact that Company B's Mustang has to sell...otherwise it loses money for Company B. Special bonus points for anyone releasing a good Apollo in 1/72 scale. The Dragon CSM is OK, but the LM is seriously misproportioned. Long-term speculation: An MQ-4C Triton will be announced at the 2020 show. Platz has a good RQ-4B Global Hawk (and I'd love to see someone do an RQ-4A), but their "RQ-4N" has major shape errors - and I'm not a rivet counter. The day one deploys to Guam, the Japanese will be trying to get measurements. More long-term speculation: Crew Dragon and Boeing Starliner for 2020. Hasegawa will do an F-35C as soon as they get one in the Pacific.
  6. Well, they had a Lancaster torn apart for the Dambusters movie, so it wasn't that much trouble to do a kit. And a lot of people were whining after the 0/400...
  7. I've built the original boxing. It's not a bad kit, but it's set up with both gear down and weapon bays open...and building them closed demands a lot of fit-and-file work. On the other hand, it came with a full set of external pylons (including the gun pod) and a good selection of stores.
  8. Not what I would have gone with. That thing will be a monster with a 36-ish inch wingspan. It'll be interesting to see how many kits will be built...as opposed to sold.
  9. Yes. Especially since there were sub-variants. I fully expect WNW to do one at some point.
  10. I don't think WNW has the design capacity to do a big bomber other than what has been announced. A Dr.1 is very plausible, or a Hanriot HD.1.
  11. Or they could go down the "whiffer" route that the Chinese makers are going down. An F-108 Rapier.
  12. Money. A-12 was intended to be an acquisition reform, with the development done on a firm, fixed price. The McDonnell-Douglas/GD team were running a year (or more) behind schedule, a billion dollars over cost, and they and the program management had just told SECDEF Cheney they were on cost and schedule. My personal opinion is that Cheney was provided bad legal advice. He tried to cancel for cause, but the vendors were not yet technically in breach of contract. And it went through a 20-year series of lawsuits...by the end of which, the value of the money in question had been reduced to a handful of Super Hornets (Boeing having inherited MDD's side of the lawsuit) and some submarine construction credits (from GD's side). One of the other problems was that U.S. acquisition laws of the period did not allow cost as an independent variable. The Government could not go to the contractors and say, "What can you give us for $3 billion in RDT&E costs?"
  13. 1/72 Vulcan would be my bet. Airfix plays strongly to the UK market, and a new-tool Vulcan fits in with the Valiant and Victor.
  14. Thunderous applause! Yes, everybody and his kid brother does a Spitfire...Mk I, V, or IX. The Merlin-powered machines are covered. But the Griffon-engined marks are NOT. And in many ways, the XIV is one of the prettiest airplanes ever built. A svelte ballerina of a machine - sleek, powerful, and lethal.
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