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From 4 years ago, another vacuformed model for your entertainment: The best reference I have found for this Stinson A endeavor (and many other modeling adventures) is Skyways Magazine. You will find a four-part Stinson A article on these Skyways issues: #75, Jul 2005 #76, Oct 2005 #77, Jan 2006 and #78, Apr 2006 The Formaplane Stinson A vacuformed kit: To accuse a dinosaur of lack of elegance and subtlety is not really fair. Dinosaurs were The machines of their time, and you could say that they fitted their niche properly. In the same way, it is not really fair to criticize -based on today's standards- a kit made many decades ago. Or is it? well, the fact is that while some stand up pretty darn well, like a Rareplane vacuform from Gordon Stevens, others do not fair as well. Anyway, I am sure their makers spent a lot of time, money and love making them, and I am still to hear that any of those dedicated people became rich in the process. So, when I poke a little fun at this sort of less fortunate ugly ducklings, it its good-hearted. That said, I think that vacs come mainly in three categories: A) "Different than the usual injected kit, but Very Interesting, and a subject that nobody else will likely tackle, nice accessories, let's build this one" (The mentioned Rareplane, now O.O.P. and contemporary Khee Kha Art Products offers) B ) "Oh, I see, a little bit* of work will be needed here, but again a plane I want to build and no mainstream company is willing to kit" (Execuform, some similar offers with plain but basically correct shapes and not much in the accessories department) * well, may be more than a little bit C) "Oh dear" And the winner for the third category is today's build: Formaplane/ MHW Stinson "A". You will see further down why so deservedly so. (Actually, to tell the truth, there is a forth category: "Oh C--p!", but we won't deal with it today) So, why vacs? You may have seen some of the many I have built. There are a number of reasons. I enjoy them a lot, it is a different approach, more involving, more creative. You learn a lot, and your modeling frontiers expand. They cover subjects that the mainstream manufacturers tend to ignore or dismiss. Many of the old and contemporary vacuformed kits are very well made, and not more difficult to build than a normal kit once you get used to their specific ways. After a lengthy but mostly enjoyable process the model was finally completed. It depicts the prototype (of which they were three configurations by the way) while still having round lower gondolas with landing gear doors. The full interior detail of course added some extra work, plus the many modifications, additions and adjustments the original kit had to go through in order to achieve a reasonably good model. Was all that work worth it? There is no right answer for that. I enjoyed -most of the time anyway- the challenge, and the model produced is far away from what a straightforward build would have rendered, I would say yes, it was worth it. Disclaimer: no carpet monsters were killed, harmed, maimed, minced, decapitated, hanged, painted in ridiculous colors, eaten, exported to Argentina, blasted to outer space, upset in any way or otherwise disturbed during the building of this model.
A few years ago I could "catch" a 1/72nd scale vacuform kit of the Stinson A. http://www.airliners.net/photo/American-Airlines-Stinson-LLC/Stinson-A-Tri-Motor/1263327 I would like to build this ugly/beautiful model, but I think there are no decals available. (American Airlines prefered) Has somebody an idea how to get decals for this wonderful airplane?