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fatalbert

Memories of modelling

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Whilst browsing the internet earlier today i came across a discussion about an early Airfix iv Hurricane and that the author had is first taste of polystyrene glue whilst msking it.This made me chuckle and a memory came up of the tubes of Airfix 'cement' as it was called then.I had a humbrol knife that was used to cut off the end of the cement tube and i would pester mum for a pin to put in the end,no lids back then.Kits were bought on a Saturday morning with my pocket money,usually  a Matchbox tank because they had a small diorama included.But the holy grail was an Airfix dog fight double,two kits in one box,how cool was that 🙂.Box usually opened before i even took me coat off lol and then the kit was asssmbled by tea time.Birthdays and Christmas  i would get a big kit.The Airfix B29 stays with me as a particular favourite.The bedroom floor airbase had a variety of units station there,B29 rubbing shoulders with a Dambuster lancaster and a mosquito.

Sometimes my bedroom floor was the sea and airfix ships battled each other or maybe my Airfix catalina may pick up a shot down spifire pilot.

Endless hours of fun,Am glad i had my childhood when i did.

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Having to get my Mum to come with me to the toy section of the department store because they wouldn't sell me a tube of LePage"s plastic cement. It was the late 60's and some teenagers were huffing that stuff to get high so stores stopped selling it to teens. 

Yes, buying a kit on Friday evening, when Mum did here grocery shopping the getting home to start building. Painting was done on Saturday and by Sunday it was airwar with some of my completed kits. The smell of Testors PLA paints. Saving up a few weeks allowance so I could buy that Airfix B-29.I also had to buy more Testors Silver paint for that one.

 

 

 

Chris

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20 minutes ago, dogsbody said:

Saving up a few weeks allowance so I could buy that Airfix B-29.I also had to buy more Testors Silver paint for that one.

 

 

 

Chris

That B29 was massive wasnt it,i dont think my paint job did it justice though😂

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A million memories. The local corner shop got in a stock of Frog kits. I badgered my Mother for the three bob they cost. I bought a Spitfire, of course. Some paint too. I built and painted it on the window sill of my bedroom.

The following day it accompanied me when my best friend's Dad brought me and him to the seaside. Somehow it survived intact. 

My friend and I spent a lot of modelling time together particularly when I discovered Airfix Magazine. So we even built dioramas together. I was also lucky that his Dad was better off than mine and he was rather spoiled so I inherited a lot of his models that he no longer wanted. 

For me a series 4 kit was way out of my price range. 

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9 minutes ago, fatalbert said:

That B29 was massive wasnt it,i dont think my paint job did it justice though😂

I never did the B-29, alas, in fact I have not doe one to this day.  The stuff I bought myself was all Series 1 and 2 and Revell or Frog equivalents, but I could get a bigger kit for birthday or Christmas treats.  I maxed out size-wise back then with the first-issue Revell and Airfix Lancs, the Airfix Sunderland (which I carefully glued very thoroughly so I could float it in the bath) and the early Revell Fw.200, a kit I was INCREDIBLY happy with because EVERYTHING was movable. I have one in the cupboard now  and might build it soon. 

But the one that got away from my point of view, the one I always wanted but could never afford, was the Airfix Hercules  with the Bloodhound missile, like this. To me that was the definition of royalty. I gather it's not that great a kit, but what an imposing box artwork and what an attractive colour scheme.

192742-32432-21-pristine.jpg

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2 hours ago, fatalbert said:

This made me chuckle and a memory came up of the tubes of Airfix 'cement' as it was called then.I had a humbrol knife that was used to cut off the end of the cement tube and i would pester mum for a pin to put in the end,no lids back

Yep, I remember that !

 

2 hours ago, fatalbert said:

a Matchbox tank because they had a small diorama included.But the holy grail was an Airfix dog fight double,two kits in one box,how cool was that

Oh yes! I loved the Puma armoured car in the street scene next to a bent lamppost, the American anti-aircraft half-track on a railway line and I seem to remember an  Africa Corps AFV with a skull on the base.  Panzer III ?

 

2 hours ago, dogsbody said:

Yes, buying a kit on Friday evening, when Mum did here grocery shopping the getting home to start building.

When they opened the first big supermarket in town they had a selection of models next to the records and tapes. I clearly remember coveting an Airfix Tomcat in the wolfpack livery and saving up to buy it!

2 hours ago, dogsbody said:

Saving up a few weeks allowance so I could buy that Airfix B-29.

I got one for Christmas from my Grandma. The wingspan was huge and I painted it using a 1 pint tin of silver paint my dad got from work because he didn't see why models needed "special" paint.  I recall being baffled as to why the turrets had no glass or gunner in them.  Actually I still am, I think I'll look it up.

2 hours ago, noelh said:

My friend and I spent a lot of modelling time together particularly when I discovered Airfix Magazine.

I never in all my childhood knew of a friend who built a single model. Never mind considered it a hobby. Strange that.

1 hour ago, Work In Progress said:

Airfix Sunderland

My other Grandma brought me one on a "Workingman's Club" coach outing to Blackpool. I was so thrilled at the sheer size of the thing. I don't think I'd ever heard of it.

 

I was very concerned with "value" as a concept and certain models I built again because of the parts count, i.e. "bang per buck". The Airfix HMS Belfast and Churchill tank spring to mind, all those Carley floats and road wheels. Mind you that still resonates with me, says the bloke who is building the Revell Tirpitz Platinum edition with 2190 parts.... 

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Funnily my partner asked me the other night how I got into making models. I know my dad made a Frog P-61 and Shell Welder in front of me.After that  it was down to a DIY shop with bagged Airfix kits at 1/9, it was great to see the contents before you bought, pr another shop with Frog kits with the Fantastic artwork. We often went to Scarborough and I would be left to browse the  models in a dark shop  where they were stacked from floor to high ceiling for a hour before I would select an Aurora or Revell or Heller kit.

I made every space model I could find during the Apollo missions.

 

I was prolific doing one a week but then I started reading Scale Models and discovered filler,  sanding and inaccuracies and I suddenly had a shelf of doom and a stash..

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Ah the Matchbox Puma Armored car, that was the very first matchbox diorama kit i bought,i was hooked after that.My favourite was the Comet tank.A,because it was a British one and B,because it looked so good.Closely followed by the Chaffee.That came with a sign post and an abandoned fox hole complete with machine gun.

Model shops had a certain smell as well,i cant describe it,but model shops that i gave been in since(if i can find one) just dont have it.

There was a shop in Hatfield that sold Novo kits in bags for 20p,HMS Torquay and the Lysander stay in my head,would love to have them now,

I had Oakmere Hobbies and Crafts in Potters Bar,Ryders toys in Hatfield and StAlbans,Beatties in Southgate and also Michaels Models in Finchley and of course Woolworths.All gone now 🙁

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I can lay blame on my addiction to my Dad ,a prolific modeller and painter.He was a figure painter mainly but dabbled in all sorts.He once had a photo of one of his models,(a scratch built Egyptian chariot ) in Scale modeling.

In my early teens i discovered Tamiya 1/35 stuff and most of my paper round money went on that.Its scary how much i must have spent over the years lol.

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39 minutes ago, Pigpen said:

Oh yes! I loved the Puma armoured car in the street scene next to a bent lamppost, the American anti-aircraft half-track on a railway line and I seem to remember an  Africa Corps AFV with a skull on the base.  Panzer III ?

Correct!

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Posted (edited)

And catalogues, i used to spend hours poring over them,especially the Tamiya ones, those Dioramas in that one where amazing.

Edited by fatalbert

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3 hours ago, fatalbert said:

That B29 was massive wasnt it,i dont think my paint job did it justice though😂

 

I painted mine with Testors PLA Silver applied with a cheap plastic handled brush that they sold in the model section of the store.

 

49714470017_6fcfeaa7d2_b.jpg

 

 

It looked okay from at least 6 feet away but up close it was rough.

 

 

 

Chris

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27 minutes ago, fatalbert said:

I can lay blame on my addiction to my Dad ,a prolific modeller and painter.He was a figure painter mainly but dabbled in all sorts.He once had a photo of one of his models,(a scratch built Egyptian chariot ) in Scale modeling.

In my early teens i discovered Tamiya 1/35 stuff and most of my paper round money went on that.Its scary how much i must have spent over the years lol.

I'm pretty sure I remember that chariot. Was it on the cover? 

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2 minutes ago, dogsbody said:

 

I painted mine with Testors PLA Silver applied with a cheap plastic handled brush that they sold in the model section of the store.

 

49714470017_6fcfeaa7d2_b.jpg

 

It looked okay from at least 6 feet away but up close it was rough.

 

 

 

Chris

I would have painted mine either humrol or airfix silver,all gloopy and with not much finesse 

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3 minutes ago, noelh said:

I'm pretty sure I remember that chariot. Was it on the cover? 

Am not sure if it was on cover,it was definitely inside though as it was a model club show report.Dad won a prize with it.The north london model club if i recall  correctly.I got a third place certificate with a Tamiya Chieftain.Still got the certificate somware lol.

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I can’t recall exactly when it started, but some of my school chums would get magazines and we’d furtively look at the pictures. Then we’d go down to the Post Office and gaze longingly at the header carded kits on display. If we were lucky, we’d buy one and rush home to open it. The smell and feel of the plastic was addictive and yes, I’ll admit it. I was hooked!

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An Airfix Hawker Hunter. Great memories being thrown up. Built the Puma late, great kit.

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20 minutes ago, Ratch said:

I can’t recall exactly when it started, but some of my school chums would get magazines and we’d furtively look at the pictures. 

You were obviously a precocious child.  That stage usually comes after (or even replaces) building kits.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, fatalbert said:

Model shops had a certain smell as well,i cant describe it,but model shops that i gave been in since(if i can find one) just dont have it.

Having worked in an old hobby shop when I was 16. Id say it was a combination of the pipe or cigarette smoke, mixed with paint and glue fumes. Then take it all and add in the Model railway smoking oil for the steam locomotives and RC aviation gas . Thats probably the same smell I remember. 

Edited by Corsairfoxfouruncle

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1 hour ago, Corsairfoxfouruncle said:

Having worked in an old hobby shop when I was 16. Id say it was a combination of the pipe or cigarette smoke, mixed with paint and glue fumes. Then take it all and add in the Model railway smoking oil and RC aviation gas or the steam locomotives. Thats probably the same smell I remember. 

Did they have model shops in those Days 😆

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I got started down this slippery slope through reading Biggles books when I was about 8 or 9 - mostly borrowed from the Leeton public library, but some were Christmas/birthday presents - from which I graduated to balsa and tissue flying kits and thence to plastic. First styrene kit was an Airfix Bristol Fighter, which I got for Christmas in 1956 (along with a Revell Roman Chariot, which my sister [five years older than me] proceeded to appropriate and build herself, because she "liked the horses" ...).

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10 hours ago, fatalbert said:

I had Oakmere Hobbies and Crafts in Potters Bar,Ryders toys in Hatfield and StAlbans,Beatties in Southgate and also Michaels Models in Finchley and of course Woolworths.All gone now

Let's have some model shops of antiquity called out. My first, as a tiny, was Feathers on Duckworth Lane in Bradford: that was where I used to press my nose against the glass and once every few weeks I would have saved up enough for another Series 1 bagged Airfix. Later once I was allowed independent bus travel I used to go on a weekly pilgrimage to Carters, in the middle of Bradford, which was an amazing multi-storey department store of things every boy wanted. Model kits up on I think the second floor, a lot of sporting goods and air rifles and fishing tackle and stuff on the ground. This was the big league.

 

e014d57c931452a29b5be3324693ebf5.jpg

 

As a grammar school boy later on I used to hang out at Frizinghall Models & Railways at the bottom off Emm Lane opposite the big park gate, often with @rs2man when we wera air cadets. Then when I got into flying models in a big way I was a regular at the Modeldrome on Manningham Lane, just above the ill-fated football ground. Then when I eventually got a driving licence there was also a very good little model shop in Saltaire I used to visit. But the flying stuff is another story really.

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Hobbies and crafts claim to fame is that it was the shop used in the Yellow pages advert were the boy buys his dad a signal box for his railway layout.Before i started my Apprenticeship i had a Saturday job working there.

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11 hours ago, Work In Progress said:

Let's have some model shops of antiquity called out. My first, as a tiny, was Feathers on Duckworth Lane in Bradford: that was where I used to press my nose against the glass and once every few weeks I would have saved up enough for another Series 1 bagged Airfix. Later once I was allowed independent bus travel I used to go on a weekly pilgrimage to Carters, in the middle of Bradford, which was an amazing multi-storey department store of things every boy wanted. Model kits up on I think the second floor, a lot of sporting goods and air rifles and fishing tackle and stuff on the ground. This was the big league.

 

e014d57c931452a29b5be3324693ebf5.jpg

 

As a grammar school boy later on I used to hang out at Frizinghall Models & Railways at the bottom off Emm Lane opposite the big park gate, often with @rs2man when we wera air cadets. Then when I got into flying models in a big way I was a regular at the Modeldrome on Manningham Lane, just above the ill-fated football ground. Then when I eventually got a driving licence there was also a very good little model shop in Saltaire I used to visit. But the flying stuff is another story really.

I'd forgotten about Feathers , but now I come to think about it , I'm sure that was where my first model , an Airfix Folland Gnat in silver plastic in a polythene bag , was bought . 

Carter's was an incredible place - only place locally that sold exotics such as Tamiya and Monogram . 

One you've forgotten about is the Train Shop Supermarket on Bertram Road . Downstairs was model railways , but upstairs was models and war games stuff . Kits were literally stacked up to the ceiling and , right at the top in the late 1970s was a stash of Frog kits which had been there so long they were priced in old money . You pulled one down , blew the dust off and paid the marked price , converted to decimal currency .  

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On 29/03/2020 at 19:01, fatalbert said:

Box usually opened before i even took me coat off lol 

Good grief man , you were supposed to open it on the top deck of the bus on the way home 

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