Jump to content

As a result of the close-down of the UK by the British Government last night, we have made all the Buy/Sell areas read-only until we open back up again, so please have a look at the announcement linked here.

This site uses cookies! Learn More

This site uses cookies!

You can find a list of those cookies here: mysite.com/cookies

By continuing to use this site, you agree to allow us to store cookies on your computer. :)

Julien

Models in WH Smiths

Recommended Posts

That is fantastic news. I really miss the days when local newsagents stocked a selection of kits. I would argue kits are important to educate children. not only do they teach history but they also teach safety, patience, planning, care, how to use tools, painting, etc etc etc... I am happy that teaching people to play the guitar that the computer generation of the 90s (my era which i never related too) who perceived computers and games as higher than everything else are now at an end.

The children I teach are more interested in model making again , they perceive games as others creations and just "another thing to do" so I recon model making is safe for a good while yet. Particularly with forums like this.

I will have a reason to go into town again now and see if ours are stocking them cheers for the heads up on this. Rob ;)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Expecting WH Smith buyers to be completely up to speed on the provenance of kits is just not realistic.

In fact, I would argue that youngsters aren't worried about accuracy and fit issues the way us curmudgeonly old modellers are.

I expect that many the old kits that don't get finished by youngsters is because the "helpful dad" is making comments such as "This kit is rubbish" or "Airfix/Revell should have binned the mould years ago".

If the child was left alone to get on with it, they'd enjoy the experience.

Edited by Eric Mc

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Kingston Upon Thames Model Zone area was under construction when I visited this weekend....hope to check back later this week.

Not a huge stock but a broad range visible including some 1/35 Tamiya which makes me happy!

Interestingly there was a member of the public whipping his camera out and taking pics of the area. I can only assume a modeller on another site as nothing has appeared on here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here here.

I have long advocated such an idea. Both Airfix and Revell still rely on their back catalogue yet these primitive kits have no claim to be in the same space as the newer better made kits.

We all have a nostalgic memory of those old kits in plastic bags and exciting boxes but really would any of us go out and buy the Me 110 and Spitfire dogfight double as a serious project? I doubt it.

Personally if I were in the Airfix camp I would have these old kits - if Airfix must rely on them - in boxes labeling them as Vintage or Nostalgic series. These days the very least we expect is recessed panel lines.

I am certain that WHS will be guided by how much for the how little cost and will stock the Revell - Airfix back catalogue which will not do them any favours.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

They have been 'doing up' the downstairs half of the Lakeside WHS for the last couple of months, but no indication of a MZ or not............

SD

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Manchester Arndale Centre WHS got a ModelZone is coming poster too.

Regards,

Gerard

same with the one in the Metro Centre.... dont know if they will stock the variety of the stuff the store it replaces had (the one in Newcastle itself stocked Vallejo paints for example) but its a start

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Taking on board the fact that young people will be put off by ancient kits in shiny new boxes, I think it would be great it WHS had a knowledgeable buyer who refused to put the old kits in their stores. For a long time, I've thought that Airfix should use some sort of vintage packaging for the older kits; yes there are those experienced modeller who like to build these old kits, but kids on the whole don't appreciate them. Same for Revell: some of there older kits are a bit of a nightmare, and some of their new ones too: the Hudson for instance. Maybe Revell need three lines: vintage (inc. ex-Matchbox, etc.), expert (higher detailed kits like the Eduard WWI types, or the Hudson), standard range of new moulds. If the suppliers are not willing to market in these streams, then the high street retailers should.

I agree entirely. I do stock some of the older moulds, but I make sure I know which are which and that the customer knows whether they are buying an all new, singing and dancing mould or one that came out of the ark. And it's not accuracy that's the issue, but more the subject of buildability. Give a child the wrong kit for their first effort and they won't come back for another one.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Kingston Upon Thames Model Zone area was under construction when I visited this weekend....hope to check back later this week.

Not a huge stock but a broad range visible including some 1/35 Tamiya which makes me happy!

Interestingly there was a member of the public whipping his camera out and taking pics of the area. I can only assume a modeller on another site as nothing has appeared on here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it will be interesting six months down the line when reviewing this thread about the WHS Modelzone...I wonder how positive or negative we will be by then after having had access to the WHS MZ.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I actually went down to there today to my local smiths in Kidderminster sadly No kits yet. I very much doubt kiddy will get them but soon as they do I will buy one to show support.

Cheers Rob. Has anyone forwarded this to admin at smiths/modelzone. ?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

In fact, I would argue that youngsters aren't worried about . . .fit issues . . .

If the child was left alone to get on with it, they'd enjoy the experience.

Please pardon the way I edited your post above, but I think this is an important point.

Yes, they are bothered about fit issues. Lego bricks fit together superbly and I venture to suggest such a level of precision is what a newcomer to modelling is entitled to expect. A pre-seventies moulding where parts will either not go together or just fall apart after swaying from side to side is simply not acceptable. The latter doesn't lend itself to a good building experience, it's very likely the model would never be finished and the chances of the newcomer making a return visit are pretty much zero.

If the kit is a new moulding, I'd suggest a bigger problem would be poor instructions with arrows pointing to the vague area where a part is supposed to go. We can figure it out, but someone unsure would be baffled about how to fit three or four separate parts into a space barely 1cm on a side.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please pardon the way I edited your post above, but I think this is an important point.

Yes, they are bothered about fit issues. Lego bricks fit together superbly and I venture to suggest such a level of precision is what a newcomer to modelling is entitled to expect. A pre-seventies moulding where parts will either not go together or just fall apart after swaying from side to side is simply not acceptable. The latter doesn't lend itself to a good building experience, it's very likely the model would never be finished and the chances of the newcomer making a return visit are pretty much zero.

If the kit is a new moulding, I'd suggest a bigger problem would be poor instructions with arrows pointing to the vague area where a part is supposed to go. We can figure it out, but someone unsure would be baffled about how to fit three or four separate parts into a space barely 1cm on a side.

Funny but the "exactness" of Lego bricks in the 1960s and early 70s (when I was a kid) did not put me off Airfix kits (or others) of that era. Why would that be different today?

Lego has always been quite a precise and tight fitting form of construction system as it has to be - since it depends on tight tolerances and friction to stay together. Plastic kits don't really need those tight tolerances since they are held together by the cement.

I agree that the Airfix instructions of my youth were much more informative and helpful in that everything was properly explained in English. The move to non-word based instructions was a retrograde step in my opinion but one brought about by the "internationalisation" of model building and other commercial imperatives.

I still think that a youngster can have tons of fun glueing together a 1960s era Series one P-40 or Seahawk - as long as they are being moaned at by an annoying dad who is grumping and griping about the model over the kid's shoulder.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Our local Smiths in Croydon has set aside space, from what I gather Airfix, Revell and Tamiya are the main kits to be stocked.

As for kids with model fit issue - I think it is a matter for the child...I held a model club at my sons primary school Fridays for an hour for a term...every one of the 20 children all got to make a kit...boys and girls...some were bored within ten minutes and couldn't care less about the kit...others really got into it and I believe I started them on their downward spiral into model hell...oh the power in me!

Some of the kids did complain about the fit of these archaic models and they were 9 and 10 year olds.

As I say I think it comes down to the individual.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please pardon the way I edited your post above, but I think this is an important point.

Yes, they are bothered about fit issues. Lego bricks fit together superbly and I venture to suggest such a level of precision is what a newcomer to modelling is entitled to expect. A pre-seventies moulding where parts will either not go together or just fall apart after swaying from side to side is simply not acceptable. The latter doesn't lend itself to a good building experience, it's very likely the model would never be finished and the chances of the newcomer making a return visit are pretty much zero.

If the kit is a new moulding, I'd suggest a bigger problem would be poor instructions with arrows pointing to the vague area where a part is supposed to go. We can figure it out, but someone unsure would be baffled about how to fit three or four separate parts into a space barely 1cm on a side.

Sorry, but in my (extensive) experience, this is rubbish.

http://www.britmodeller.com/forums/index.php?/topic/234936785-carrongrange-school-modelmaking-2013/?hl=carrongrange

J

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Given the launch date of 23rd November I'll be mightly impressed if Meadowhall is open on time. There was absolutely no sign of it lastnight in the store, not even a poster.

Never ever listen to my betting tips either. Had to go in today and lo and behold the Modelzone bit at the back is nearly finished. Though it is blocked off I saw Tamiya, Airfix and Italeri kits as well as the very expensive die casts. Looks like it will open on the 23rd after all.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think it will be interesting six months down the line when reviewing this thread about the WHS Modelzone...I wonder how positive or negative we will be by then after having had access to the WHS MZ.

Hi there.

As long as 'we' don't have too high an expectation of what WHS is going to 'Do' for us, then we should be alright. If someone used to an hours chat about the precise provenance of smer kits before 1910, whilst only buying a tube of glue, is going to expect the same service, then TBH, they're going to be disappointed and should steer clear. Neither is a corner of a Smiths with models in it going to revive the Hobby to 1970s levels. It just isn't. so we all need to just temper our expectations and take it for what it is. If going in there inspires a kid or two to see what the hobbys all about, then great.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great new's. The manager of the former Modelzone in Manchester, will be in charge of the new Modelzone in W.H.Smith's Arndale Manchester.

They are setting up the "new" Modelzone as we speak .

Also of interest Paul,( Ex Modelzone) as his own modelshop,so if you cannot get what you want at W.H.Smith's ask him,i'm sure he will get what you want.

There is light at the end off the tunnel!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great new's. The manager of the former Modelzone in Manchester, will be in charge of the new Modelzone in W.H.Smith's Arndale Manchester.

They are setting up the "new" Modelzone as we speak .

Also of interest Paul,( Ex Modelzone) as his own modelshop,so if you cannot get what you want at W.H.Smith's ask him,i'm sure he will get what you want.

There is light at the end off the tunnel!

Or maybe, as an independent local trader, you could try Paul first.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ayup All...

One thing I shall be grateful for, is that if my local WHS starts adding paint and other consumables to the limited numbers of starter kits it keeps in ATMO, then at least I wont have to go to Stafford to get some. I did that Tuesday whilst fetching other essentials, and for me its a sixteen-mile round trip. Not good if you're low on funds and petrol.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

saw an advert in smiths window Cardiff for 2 members of staff to man the new dept. hope some of the guys from the old store saw the add.

Glenn.

Edited by cardiff guy

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Modelzone in WH Smiths Croydon is now open (I think it opened yesterday) and there are vouchers being given out in the store for 20% off all products in the modelzone section until December 8th. Obviously not as big as the old Modelzone store, but it's a far bigger section of the store than I thought it would be.

Kits from Revell, airfix and Tamiya, Humbrol acrylic and enamel paints, some railway things, model cars, diecast etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×
×
  • Create New...