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clive_t

Opinions on Amodel kits

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Hi all, it's a bit of a strange story,  but recently while researching some info on my current build I stumbled across some pics of one of the weirdest aircraft I've ever seen - namely, a SPAD SA2:

 

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/SPAD_S.A

 

A quick check on Hannants showed they had kits available in 1:72 scale for the SA2 and the SA4, however they were both 'Amodel' kits.

 

From my time on here I have read some not particularly positive comments regarding this maker, but I was interested to know if it was a general consensus that they are to be avoided? The kits are on sale for not much more than £10, so on the face of it a reasonable price.

 

I'd be interested to hear others' experiences, good or bad, with this kit maker.

 

 

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I have done three of their kits now.  Can't remember the designation of the first one, but it was a Russian test aircraft after WW II.  If made me wonder if they ever tried building test shots because I had to do a lot of sanding on the cockpit walls to get it to fit when the fuselage halves were assembled.  Their instructions leave a lot to be desired.  The next one was the Tu 128 Fiddle.  Lots of filling and sanding because the fuselage side pieces had lots of undulations in them.  The breakdown of the fuselage sections did not make much sense and added to the amount of filler required.  Again I had to wonder if they ever tried building a test shot before releasing it.  I ended up blowing off the missles and left it unarmed.  Lastly I did their Hawker Hector.  What a disaster that ended up being.  I did get it finished but it turned out so bad I kept it as a reminder of what NOT to do when I got to do the other members of the Hawker Hart extended family.  Again you have to wonder if they ever did test shots as you can't fit some parts in no matter what, and need to do a bit of sanding and filling.  Some of the struts are really thin and even using a very thin razor saw to try to cut the parts out left a lot of broken pieces.  I have the Spad A2 kit, just haven't built it yet.  Lots of flash.

Later,

Dave

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AModel kits do vary, from their early production ones which were pretty crude to their more modern ones which approach mainstream standards, and I have several of both.   Elsewhere on the site are comments about their recent Jetstream, which seem pretty complimentary.  You might like to check the number of the kit and compare it with the latest releases, which should give some idea of the quality to expect.

 

Thanks for the comments on the Hector: I'm about to start one.  However it should be added that this was an Avis kit before being re-released by Amodel, although what that means as far as the tooler goes I can't say.

 

PS Memory bubbles up to suggest that Avis didn't release the Hector, but comparison to their Audax shows it is the same tooler - even at least one identical sprue (the weapons).

Edited by Graham Boak

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Thanks for your opinions, much appreciated. After some fruitless searching for the current model numbers 72060 & 72061, I tried the old numbers (visible on the box art): 7260 and 7261.

 

I got lucky with one relevant post from another forum back in 2009, which was quite informative. Like me, the reviewer found it a very interesting and unusual subject for a model, and in a very similar vein to Dave's experience above, found that several of the small parts, e.g struts, were lost in trying to remove them from the sprues. Obviously there was some improvisation in sourcing replacements, and judging by the pics he posted, the finished result looked pretty good to be fair.

 

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In my opinion Amodel is one of the most interesting manufacturers out there, offering subjects that nobody else does. The earlier kits surely needs good modeller skils and a tube or two of putty. But at the end a very satisfying result can be achieved.

 

Take a look at Matt Bittner's one: http://www.internetmodeler.com/2004/january/aviation/meb_spad.php

 

(The same issue of Internet Modeler offers three build articles of the pulpit SPAD!)

 

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In my opinion Amodel is one of the most interesting manufacturers out there, offering subjects that nobody else does. The earlier kits surely needs good modeller skils and a tube or two of putty. But at the end a very satisfying result can be achieved.

 

Take a look at Matt Bittner's one: http://www.internetmodeler.com/2004/january/aviation/meb_spad.php

 

(The same issue of Internet Modeler offers three build articles of the pulpit SPAD!

http://www.internetmodeler.com/2004/january/contents.php  )

 

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32 minutes ago, CarLos said:

In my opinion Amodel is one of the most interesting manufacturers out there, offering subjects that nobody else does. The earlier kits surely needs good modeller skils and a tube or two of putty. But at the end a very satisfying result can be achieved.

 

Take a look at Matt Bittner's one: http://www.internetmodeler.com/2004/january/aviation/meb_spad.php

 

(The same issue of Internet Modeler offers three build articles of the pulpit SPAD!

http://www.internetmodeler.com/2004/january/contents.php  )

 

Thanks CarLos, that's very enlightening - 'Pulpit SPAD', yes how very apt!

 

Well the other night I took the plunge and ordered one from eModels - £10 including postage, so worth a punt I reckon - should be dropping on to my door mat right about today or tomorrow :)

 

 

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I bought a couple of the recent DH Moth family & whilst I've yet to build one, the initial impression is that of well moulded, flash free components with good detail.

Steve.

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I've built some of their models and have more in the stash. I agree with what has already been said, they are very interesting kits, the earlier tools were let's say interesting to assemble, but later kits are way better. In any case better treat them for what they are, short run kits made by a smaller manufacturer, with all the related pros and cons.

Personally I like Amodel kits a lot, not only the subjects are interesting but their kits show a lot of interesting features, the detail is quite good and some kits have a very realistic surface detail. Whoever makes the tools sure loves the subjects. Their IAR-80 has been one of the kits I've liked the most in the last 2-3 years, it sure needed a lot of preparation work and some parts required a lot of cutting and sanding to fit, but it was a lovely kit and resulted in a very nice model.

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I'm with Carlos :).

 

The early ones can be a challenge, but are often very accurate in outline. 

 

There's something about Amodel kits that is quite addictive. Fascinating subjects, usually quite usable decals, Humbrol colour call outs (handy)..but it's more than that.

 

They're just quite good fun, even when frustrating, and the smaller earlier ones are so cheap that if it all goes wrong, I just try to learn from it and have another go.

 

The more recent kits are quite different, as Steve points out, the little DH 60's are quite lovely. A nano saw is a very handy tool to have to keep those struts intact, it can be done.

 

Trial fitting and clean up is everything with the early ones (of which the DH-2 is one).

 

Go for it, take it slow and steady and my guess is that you'll end up with something very nice :).

 

All the best

TonyT

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I am having an on/off relationship with their 1/144 Grumman Albatross, some parts crudely moulded and a fair bit of filler required.

But, they do manufacture kits that the mainstream manufacturers don't, and fairly priced at that.

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2 hours ago, John_W said:

I am having an on/off relationship with their 1/144 Grumman Albatross, some parts crudely moulded and a fair bit of filler required.

But, they do manufacture kits that the mainstream manufacturers don't, and fairly priced at that.

 

I've built the Albatross for a GB on this same forum, it can indeed be quite challenging. On my model I added the extra complication of having to shorten the wing as I was building a different variant and overall it required a lot of filler. Said that though I was surprised by some of the details, for a short run kit in 1/144 scale it was actually pretty nice. I'd sure build another one.. ok, maybe not one painted silver this time...

 

The Lancaster in the same scale is IMHO a beauty. Not built it yet though, so I don't know what the fit is like

Edited by Giorgio N

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I forgot to add, with most Amodel kits a nice variety of different fillers is useul.

 

Humbrol seems to work very well with their earlier, waxy type plastic.

 

Flex-I-Files are very helpful too.

 

It can actually be very therapeutic.

 

I'm making things sound worse aren't I....:D?

 

:coat: 

TonyT

 

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I don't worry about restoring panel lines, how visible would they realy be in 1/144?

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My Amodel SPAD S.A.4 kit arrived through the post today. A quick inspection of the sprues (there are three in a very generously sized box) show a bit of flash in places, but the moulding detail is very good. All that remains to be seen is how well they fit together. I'm very tempted to make this my next project, although if I do it will be my second successive Russian WW1 item!

 

Thanks everyone for your helpful comments!

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