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Julien

Airfix for 2019

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I have a very clear memory of standing in front of the wall of Airfix kits in Woolworths in Falkirk and wanting the BOAC Concorde, but I never got the chance. We'll remedy that this time. 

Isn't the BOAC livery just more classy than BA? 

I've been contemplating The Man in the High Castle version too... 

John 

 

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1 hour ago, AlCZ said:

 

AIRFIX is British company - so curious i waiting from him a BRITISH types...

 

True, however they are also sensibly well established in the international market as well and this years releases seem to favour that. We have a 'car scale' Hellcat for those US customers who live in large houses and have plenty of room, a popular 1/72 Buccaneer for the more traditional 1/72 UK market (although they like their big kits as well) and a Mig-17 that is clearly aimed for modellers in countries that operated the type (Eastern Bloc). For the rest of the globe a Tiger Moth ticks all the boxes so we seem to have many worldwide modellers happily catered for. We do now live in a global retail market and I think Airfix more than anyone else actually realise that. 

 

My wishlist Venom and Beaufort seem to have missed out again, however we've all got huge stashes of kits sitting there so let's be happy with what we've got and build something! 

 

Cheers and well played Airfix.. Dave 

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2 hours ago, AlCZ said:

Hurricane Mk.IIC is important version. Yes, make it Hawa & Italeri, but Hawa is no longer available and Fix BoB Hurri is much better as Italeri offer. But - when it don' t make Fix make it cannon Hurri (or Hurribomber and other variant) our little Ed.... In future...

 

Long nose Blenheim is one of important bomber of first phase of WW2. And in small scale Airfix long nosed Blenheim have...

 

And yes, i wait for quarter scale "Rider on the Sky" - aka Wellington. Their 1/72 is very nice. 

 

Ancient (in Czech language we say "old murder")P-61 is too niiice. Big ugly "Spider" in new tool be a most better choice... And He-219...

 

Victor exist before releasing of new Fix too (from Matcbox). Airfix Vulcan is 40 years old kit... and new be better...

 

Re-box of Academy AFV....  yes, in UK is Airfix a Toyshop suppler, but from adults modeler - who can bought a Academy AfV- then have it. Nothing interess. But i understand - this is for Kids...and Toyshops... Abrams, Hetzer, Škoda Lt-35, T-34 family and Panzer IV are excellent kits. And now prepare Academy Late production "Garfield"- i curious ! Tiger I, Königstiger and M-10 are better choice from another companies... (Tiger I from DML, maybe now HobbyBoss, King from Meng and Takom  (ad infinitum)........................

 

You  need to place a Airfix in the context of it’s primary market.  The UK and also who is buying its products and where they are sold. 

 

Any product range has to reflect the entire market not just a segment of it. 

 

So what Airfix’s 2019 offering is about is giving something for all of the market. With a healthy nod towards us as enthusiasts ( who are probably the minority and the most vocal segment of the customer base).

 

As such I personally don’t bregrudge Airfix partnering with Academy to deliver ‘toy shop’ quality 1/35 AFV kits to its customer base. Nor it rereleasing old toolings if it feels it had a market for them.

 

The range offer seems well balanced for all segments of the market not just us curmudgeons who make up a bit of the market but not all of it..

 

The reality is we could all come up with best seller ideas for models that absolutely every one would want such as a 1/48 Lancaster but the other reality is the vast majority of us don’t own or work for a model manufacturer. So our view is somewhat narrow and without any basis and almost definitely without any financial risk.

 

I think your view of what a good idea and what is essential for modellers would rapidly change if you were relying on us to pay the bills or put food on the table.

 

Effectivley forums give us the ability to discuss and critique decisions made by manufacturers and that’s healthy and reasonable. But in the end it’s just talk. 

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2 hours ago, Paul J said:

Incidentally, not sure if its been mentioned re the 1/35 stuff, Airfix did do a range of soft skinned vehicles to this scale in the 1970's I don't recall the origins someone like ARII or Nichimo I don't know.

 

They did indeed, I have a couple of them in the stash, in fact, if I'm not mistaken, they were the very first members of what was to become the stash in later years, I have the Bedford QL Portee and the Dodge Command Car with water carrier.

 

The origin of the kits was discussed in a thread many moons ago but I can't remember whose moulds they were, I don't recall them being either of ARII or Nichimo's but I'm happy to be proved wrong.

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I am, finally, a happy chappy!

I will now be be able to get at least 3 of the Vintage Bulldogs without bankrupting a small nation, with one to converted to an RAAF machine.

 

Oh happy day!

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5 minutes ago, Wez said:

 

They did indeed, I have a couple of them in the stash, in fact, if I'm not mistaken, they were the very first members of what was to become the stash in later years, I have the Bedford QL Portee and the Dodge Command Car with water carrier.

 

The origin of the kits was discussed in a thread many moons ago but I can't remember whose moulds they were, I don't recall them being either of ARII or Nichimo's but I'm happy to be proved wrong.

Max plastic model co. IIRC

 

Scalemates has all the info...

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3 hours ago, Rabbit Leader said:

True, however they are also sensibly well established in the international market as well and this years releases seem to favour that. We have a 'car scale' Hellcat for those US customers who live in large houses and have plenty of room, a popular 1/72 Buccaneer for the more traditional 1/72 UK market (although they like their big kits as well) and a Mig-17 that is clearly aimed for modellers in countries that operated the type (Eastern Bloc). For the rest of the globe a Tiger Moth ticks all the boxes so we seem to have many worldwide modellers happily catered for. We do now live in a global retail market and I think Airfix more than anyone else actually realise that. 

 

My wishlist Venom and Beaufort seem to have missed out again, however we've all got huge stashes of kits sitting there so let's be happy with what we've got and build something! 

 

Cheers and well played Airfix.. Dave 

I don't really mind where a subject is from or who operated it. I'm British and primarily focus on Luftwaffe subjects, and definitely plan on picking up a mig at some point. And two of the new me262 boxing..... And two of the 2 seater one they just released, maybe another of the boxing I have (single seater)....... Tempting....

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18 hours ago, Work In Progress said:

Possibly planned at one stage but now quietly dropped due to some supply uncertainty or other issue. 

It's in the catalogue and therein lies a tale!

 

Went into a W H Smith this morning to find the catalogue + Feb' Mag on sale, went to the self service till - no discount given. Told by a member of staff he could give me the discount if I could show the source of the into' - I could not.

 

Early this afternoon went into a different branch again catalogue + Feb' Mag on sale, but this time with a big notice saying buy both and get £3.50 off. Went to till and again no discount. The assistant looked at the notice and it said in very small print on the back! Offer valid from 10th January. The assistant apologised that she had put the items out a day early - bit could not honour the discount and I had to come back tomorrow.

 

As my nearest W H Smiths is a good drive away I came home and ordered the package off Key Publishing.

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I might pick up a 1/35 tank, but are these new tools? Reissues? I also would’ve loved to see some new tooled American aircraft in 1/72 akin to the Hellcat, something along the lines of an A-20 or an Avenger which could have both USAAF and RAF schemes, but that doesn’t seem to be the case this year. 

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On 1/8/2019 at 8:28 PM, John said:

I have a very clear memory of standing in front of the wall of Airfix kits in Woolworths in Falkirk .......

 

Remember it well , and Bill Gibbs shop at the Steeple.

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HK & WnW released 1/32 Lancaster for hundred €£$. It is a not only large or huge piece of kit, it is a gigantic kit, with wingspan overall 1m. The same example  Handley Page O/400 bomber is. When we have now a 1/32 Heavy bombers, why in "royal size" must bought a 30-40 years, maybe 50 years old kits  ? Su-34 "Fullback" isn' t a small aircraft and now was released a two companies (kittyhawk/hobbyboss), the same reason is US C-HET truck n' trailer (meng/hobbyboss), Yak 130 etc... H-B released a 1/32 B-24 (unfortunatelly with fatal wing root flaw)... IMHO - Airfix didn' t release a many peoples awaited 1/32 Hellcat, he must make it in car scale... i have both Tiffys in stash, i don' know why i build it. Hellcat is my favorite naval fighter, i probably bought it, but is is a huge, atypic scale (for aircraft).  And Airfix make it. But most important and iconic british and US bomber in quarter scale weren't released... in 1/32 isn' t problem and in compact scale is ? I don' t understand why is 1/48 WW2 Heavies ignored... a twenty years ago go rumor a Tamiya may released a new 1/48 Boeing. We have 2019 and new tool 1/48 B-17 still never released. We have a expensive B-17 from Hk, ugly B-24 from H-B (this is a really shame, make this parody on most numerous heavy bomber,) and too expensive and gigantic Lanc. But quarter scale not... Many people bought 1/32 "Viermotorige" and 1/48 not ? Strange decision...

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I agree to a model enthusiast surrounded by a myriad of new kits and releases it seems somewhat anachronistic for Airfix to be releasing kits that were first tooled in the 60’s or 70’s.

 

What you absolutely need to understand is that Airfix is unlike any other model brand anywhere in the world. While each brand has it’s brand defined by often physical aspects. (Tamiya it’s legendary fit WNW it’s fit and ease of assembly Trumpeter its prolific release schedule and general lack of research.. etc)

Airfix’s brand is underpinned by a huge loyalty that’s derived from Nostalgia. It has this because it’s been in the market for a long long time and the brands devotees have literally grown up and old with it.  A deep part of the British psyche is a love of nostalgia. That’s not a slur on the British just an observed fact.  So Airfix as a brand has this value or quality which makes it gold in terms of marketing a hugely loyal following in its home country coupled with an imbued love of nostalgic things. Its possible for Airfix to capitalise on this.

 

So what we have seen is an unabashed move to market these old kits on a purely nostalgic basis. Classic old box art. It taps directly into those things that’s connects us now as adults back to our childhood or younger years where we can buy and build the exact same kit as we did when we were kids. 

 

It’s a very very clever marketing strategy and one derived from a real understanding of the consumer base and the brand values and worth you have.  

 

Airfix are not alone even Tamiya is re-releasing old ‘classic’ 1/35 armour kits.

 

It’s also cost effective as you get to fill the range with kits where the tooling costs are long paid off so you derive more margin out of the sale.

 

Any business that could get away with selling a product in the market today that’s fully amortised all of its development costs several times over and have a keen and loyal consumer base generally delighted it’s selling you those products is going to do so as it’s bankable.

 

So it’s easy not to understand why they do stuff. Especially if you didn’t grow up waiting for Saturday to come round so you could head down to ‘Leadbetters’ the news agents and spend your pocket money on an Airfix kit Build it by Saturday Tea time before ‘Buck Rodgers in the 25th century’ came on and Paint in by Sunday Lunch and stick the decals on while mum is Watching Antiques Roadshow or Harry Seacombe  ‘Highway’ on Sunday PM.

 

Its easy to say they should release this or that and why no 1/48 B-17… 

 

Airfix is a great many things to a great many people. The one thing for sure is Airfix is embedded in British culture. So rather than bemoan what isn’t and compare them to brands that simply don’t have the history or loyal fan base. Or look at it clinically and say Airfix’s isn’t as good as XXYY. 

 

You need to accept you’re dealing with a British Cultural institution..  Accept that and it all makes sense..

 

I hope this helps..

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On 1/8/2019 at 7:02 PM, Chrissy_J said:

The 1/35 armour is a big surprise to me, and not a scale I associate with Airfix, but if it's at a good price I'll buy it.

It's not, it's only one or two quid cheaper than Academy, another case of Airfix charging maximum they think they can get away with. I assume they are only leasing the tools, not buying them so would be interested to see how they would justify these prices. (At this point I'm retiring to the bunker to await the inevitable assault from the Airfix See No Evil Defence League.

Edited by spaddad

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On 1/8/2019 at 9:24 PM, Wez said:

 

 

 

The origin of the kits was discussed in a thread many moons ago but I can't remember whose moulds they were, I don't recall them being either of ARII or Nichimo's but I'm happy to be proved wrong.

MAX

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6 minutes ago, spaddad said:

, another case of Airfix charging maximum they think they can get away with. 

AKA general business practice.

 

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21 hours ago, Paul821 said:

The assistant looked at the notice and it said in very small print on the back! Offer valid from 10th January. The assistant apologised that she had put the items out a day early - but could not honour the discount and I had to come back tomorrow.

It's that sort of attitude that loses sales for the high street retailers, as you proved by going online for your purchase. 

I mean, it's not as though there's going to be a massive clamour for that offer, for that branch of the retailer, on that day.

 

I see this sort of thing almost monthly; my partner and I go to the 24hour supermarkets very late at night, when the shelves are being restocked and things are being labelled as special offers, and sometimes the price on the shelf isn't repeated at the checkout because the computer system hasn't been updated. But we usually have the shelf price honoured as the checkout supervisor can override the system for the customer.

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When I first saw the announcement on the 7th, I was pretty underwhelmed, if I'm honest. Having ruminated on the matter since then, I have come to the conclusion that, considering their parent company's difficult position, they've been clever with their choices.

 

Ignoring the stuff we already knew about (plus modified versions of existing toolings, re-releases and re-boxes of other manufacturers' kits) I believe that leaves us with just three kits: the MiG-17 and Buccaneer in 1/72 and the Tiger Moth in 1/48. Now, while 1/48 isn't my cup of tea at all, it's pretty obvious that the Tiger Moth is a hugely important type that has been criminally overlooked by mainstream manufacturers in this scale. With the vast array of colours and markings, not to mention users, it's hard to imagine that this choice won't be anything but a huge success for Airfix. I think that the Buccaneer is another good choice. You only had to look at the price the old Airfix kit was fetching on eBay (and how many are now being offloaded in advance of the new kit) to see that there is demand for the aeroplane. Finally, the Mig-17, whilst possibly seeming a bit of a left-field choice here in the UK, is another popular subject worldwide and again, has a variety of users and schemes.

 

With just three completely new kits, I think that they've actually made some inspired decisions under difficult circumstances.

 

Well played, Airfix!

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Don't forget to add the Spitfire XlV and Hellcat to next year's lineup, making 5 completely new kits.

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I for one am pleased with the new range additions.

 

Nostalgia has an important place in my kit-buying at the moment, so I am really looking forward to the Demon, Dominie and Jetstream. I am already building a Heron, but may well treat myself to another (depending on colour scheme). The Black Widow was always a favourite when I were a nipper. The Storch was never in my stash, so that needs amending. The Concorde is just so awe-inspiring, so that will need to be obtained too.

 

The Buccaneer is a must having read 'Buccaneer Boys', and the Black Phantom looks rather cool, so it is not just oldies I like.

 

Great news Airfix, Thank you!

 

Ray

 

PS The Tiggie will probably be a 'classic' within a few months! Hope the mainplane struts fit easier than with the 1/72 version...

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A08017A   B-17G  new decals  catalogue shows  "Carolina Moon" 43-37907 coded +J 490th BG/851BS,   and a silver example  coded LN: Y    43-38414,of the 100thBG/ 350BS "Heaven Sent"

Edited by T-21

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On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 1:24 AM, Jazzie said:

Wondering if the F-15/16/18 starter sets might be someone elses mould seen as there is a possible tie up with Academy for the 1/35th stuff?

The listing has them at 18.99 which is the price for Series 4 where all te kits (except the Eagle, S.5) originate. So actually a fair price for kits IMHO that are (un-)arguably somewhat dated. However I still like their Eagle, but have enough 1980 "new" boxings in the stash to ot to require to buy one (but I noticed the description is ambiguous, saying "A" and Strike Eagle", at least in quotes I saw).

On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 8:19 AM, SeaVenom said:

I'm amazed they still haven't done Venoms and Vampires in 1/48th though.

You're not alone 😉 But then we have got the Hunter and will get the F. 4 this year, which I personally consider even more important as it's the first long-run injection small-bore Hunter since the 1955 or thereabouts Frog it. Still, maybe we are lucky with the V's next year.

On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 10:53 AM, Giorgio N said:

Don't know about the tanks, they sure fill a market segment in which Airfix was absent, in some markets Airfix is more easily available than Academy and this benefits both companies, in other markets having an Academy kit in an Airfix box may or not be good depending on the relative pricing of both companies. In any case it's a cheap way to add subjects to a catalogue, Italeri and even more Revell have been doing this for years with no problem.

 

At the same time I can understand how many modellers may feel disappointed as Airfix had in the past released many more actual new tools every year while this year these aren't really that many. This may or not be related to the parent company financial troubles, in any case it's also understandable that after a few years at full steam Airfix may need to calm down for a while. 

Possibly the tanks are an opportunity for Academy to sneak into sales channels especially in the UK not otherwise easily available to them. And for Airfix to expand their range without tool investment. Given the numbering of the kits out of the usual Series system, could it be they will co-branding ?

 

As Revell hasn't been that prolific with new tools in the past two years, with their own financial woes, I guess the Airfix schedule doesn't look bad, and it's good that they finally try to make easy money with some of their more desirable/sought after hangar queen moulds; though the Dominie was re-released not that long ago.

On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 10:55 AM, mahavelona said:

As an armour fan I was initially overjoyed to see the range of 1/35 armour kits, somehow imagining they were newly tooled! Slowly I came to realise this would not be the case... But I am pleased nonetheless. The specific nature of these kits' naming schemes leaves me hoping for some well-researched schemes from the box. 

Not quite sure about that when they translated the (t) in 38(t) as "tonnes" apparently, but let's hope for the best.

On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 7:37 PM, AlCZ said:

Victor exist before releasing of new Fix too (from Matcbox). Airfix Vulcan is 40 years old kit... and new be better...

 

The difference between Vulcan an Victor is that they have a tool of the Vulcan which probably makes them decent money still until it becomes shot, while the MB/Revell Victor doesn't earn them money. And in this case the "doesn't earn them money" argument is valid because the MB kit appears totally eclipsed, price difference notwithstandig (and the MB, as far as I understand, requires qute some mods to be converted into a Bomber version).

On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 8:17 PM, Paul J said:

Incidentally, not sure if its been mentioned re the 1/35 stuff, Airfix did do a range of soft skinned vehicles to this scale in the 1970's I don't recall the origins someone like ARII or Nichimo I don't know.

As has been said twice already (sorry for the repetition), Max from Japan also sold as Peerless and Tomy at various times and places. The moulds were apparently bought by Italeri around 1981 and more or less drastically revised.

On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 8:22 PM, Andre B said:

An reissue of the BOAC prototype Concorde is interesting. But is it ok these days as a kit? The latest Airfix 1/144 BOAC 707-436 are almost unbuildable.

 

Hope that Airfix makes an 1/72 J 34 Hunter as well!

 

We'll have to wait and see re the Concorde. As the kit was only in production for some seven years or so until replaced by the newer tool (and is itself some five or so years younger than the 707), it will certainly have seen a lot less use.

A small bore Hunter in 72nd would be great including the J.34, but I'm not sure if they'd go fishing in Revell's pond at this time, and a solitary small-bore version would possiby not be viable. On the other hand, the Revell costs around the price of a S.4 kit in Airfix terms, which I feel Airfix could match with a new tool.

 

My resumée: The Hunter 4 is enough to make me happy. Everything else is icing...

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On ‎1‎/‎8‎/‎2019 at 9:24 PM, Wez said:

 

They did indeed, I have a couple of them in the stash, in fact, if I'm not mistaken, they were the very first members of what was to become the stash in later years, I have the Bedford QL Portee and the Dodge Command Car with water carrier.

 

The origin of the kits was discussed in a thread many moons ago but I can't remember whose moulds they were, I don't recall them being either of ARII or Nichimo's but I'm happy to be proved wrong.

The 70s kits were all by Max, in the 2000s they issued 3 Italeri kits and one Trumpeter.

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15 hours ago, spaddad said:

It's not, it's only one or two quid cheaper than Academy, another case of Airfix charging maximum they think they can get away with. I assume they are only leasing the tools, not buying them so would be interested to see how they would justify these prices. (At this point I'm retiring to the bunker to await the inevitable assault from the Airfix See No Evil Defence League.

I doubt the moulds have moved. Airfix are probably buying in the kits bagged and just putting them in a red box.

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