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A riveting question...


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Which do you reckon was the most heavily riveted Airfix kit? 

 

The one that sticks in my mind is the P40 Kittyhawk. Even as a kid I knew there was something wrong there...

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Airfix used to get a lot of grief for its Phantom Rivetter but actually, they were a good representation of raised, dome headed rivets which feature on many aircraft even today.

 

These raised rivets were a far more accurate representation than the holes a lot of modellers have been lured into thinking are rivets, they're not, they're holes or at best the holes that will be subsequently filled by rivets.  These holes if scaled up would be deeper than the skin thickness in real life.  As an aircraft engineer I don't like them (frankly, they offend me), if a real aircraft turned up with that holes that deep we'd be reskinning it at the very least, chances are we'd be scrapping it as being overstressed.  Most riggers of my acqauintance would shoot a countersunk rivet to be less than 5 thousandths of an inch flush of the surface in 1:1 scale (as a matter of professional pride)!

 

The Airfix Puma is a rivetfest but at least they're of the raised variety just as they are on the real thing!

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Yes, but raised rivets tended to be about the scale of the bolts in Frankenstein's neck.  Not "far more accurate" than golf-ball pocks, in my opinion.

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Most ,but not all raised rivets on a Puma are what's called mushroom headed rivets. These are domed rivets that are little squashed down compared to normal domed/ raised rivets. 

Sammy da Fish

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2 hours ago, Vicarage Vee said:

The original Lancaster was very.... tactile.

So was Revell's 1970s Lanc. :hmmm:
Is that a pattern?

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The worst model I ever came across for rivets has to be the original, 1968, Frog/Revell Shackleton. My memory if it  is not just domes, but each one was slightly elongated away from the skin. Think tiny udders. Yuk! Odd, considering the rest of their range was noticeably smoother than other company's efforts.   

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To be fair, I don't think the 1/24th Harrier is at all bad. They are incised rivets and can be disguised with a coat of primer and some sanding. ISTR that the 'mottle' had to be added to prevent vacuum suction when removing the plastic from the moulds. That said, car bodies are smooth...

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Ah yes, the never-ending 'discussion' about rivets and panel lines. In my view, it's a question of scale but apart form this it doesn't matter if raised or sunk - the overall appearance matters when the model is painted and varnished. Even more recent kits with sunk rivets etc. don't look realistic, whereas some oldies can hold their own easily. Take the new Airfix 1/48 Mustang for instance; the rivet/fastener holes appear much too big and deep. Compare those rivets with the nice work that Otaki/Arii did back in the seventies!

Also many WWII airplanes had overlapping metal panels and domed rivets, e.g. the Grummans - sunk rivets simply don't look authentic. Monogram, in their mid-period, produced some fine models with raised panels lines and only a few rivets (e.g. the P-51D). They look just right when finished.

Of course there were kit makers who overdid it, but that was in modelling's infancy in the 50s and 60s. I daresay that many modellers hate raised lines and rivets because they are more difficult to sand and cannot be 'washed' (another questionable technique).

 

Just my opinion. Thanks, Michael

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Love these discussions about what constitutes an accurate scale model. I used to be a spray-painter, in Aviation, and also I did camouflage on A.P.C's. (ASLAV25) So I could get up close to things and make a judgement. I can appreciate an old Monogram, or a new Tamiya. It's all in the interpretation. I can handle raised lines, and "hole" rivets, they can all be made to look the part. Just one opinion.

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It has to be remembered that modelling is a 'representation' of the prototype. It is I suspect impossible to create a true scale replica of an aircraft, esp. in the smaller scales due to the materials and tooling involved. Many details of an aircraft would be invisible or unmanageable at 1/72nd, so we have to give an impression. For instance raised panel lines are not necessarily worse than engraved in terms of realism given that some aircraft have overlapping panels and engraved lines scaled up would leave gaping holes in the aircraft. So we do what we think gives the right impression. If raised rivets were a feature of the real thing then rivets on the model may provide a better impression than holes - it's really a matter of taste. It's like the whole black preshading thing - to me it just doesn't look right - kind of the modelling equivalent of photographic HDR - a sort of hyper-realism.  I'm not saying it's wrong - any more or less than a uniform colour coat - its a matter of personal preference - or perhaps fashion.

 

BTW - I do wonder if the modern preference for engraved detail was partly driven by the relative ease of re-scribing compared to rebuilding raised detail. 

 

Cheers

 

Colin

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I think this one must be one of the most 'over-rivetted' kits (I know it is not Airfix by the way!)

 

https://www.kitreviewsonline.de/kit-archaeologie-heute-starfix-tupolev-tu-16-im-massstab-1200/

 

Scroll down and you can see what I mean! It is 1/144 scale

 

Cheers Ray whatactuallybuiltoneofthesein1970

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I remember Revell's 1/48 Sikorsky CH-53 to be a particularly rivety affair.

 

You could grate cheese on the old Revell Lancaster.

 

I also recall Airfix's 1/72 Sunderland to be a rivet festival

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14 hours ago, Ray S said:

I think this one must be one of the most 'over-rivetted' kits (I know it is not Airfix by the way!)

 

https://www.kitreviewsonline.de/kit-archaeologie-heute-starfix-tupolev-tu-16-im-massstab-1200/

 

Scroll down and you can see what I mean! It is 1/144 scale

 

Cheers Ray whatactuallybuiltoneofthesein1970

That is truly world-beating rivet action!

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On 9/22/2020 at 5:30 PM, Wez said:

Airfix used to get a lot of grief for its Phantom Rivetter but actually, they were a good representation of raised, dome headed rivets which feature on many aircraft even today.

The trouble with the old Airfix rivets was if they were scaled up to full size, they wouldn't have loked out of place on a battleship.

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Airfix's 1/72 HH-3C Super Jolly Green Giant.  I have one.  I've read about it.  Yet to build it.  One day...

Edited by RobL
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16 hours ago, Ray S said:

I think this one must be one of the most 'over-rivetted' kits (I know it is not Airfix by the way!)

 

https://www.kitreviewsonline.de/kit-archaeologie-heute-starfix-tupolev-tu-16-im-massstab-1200/

 

Scroll down and you can see what I mean! It is 1/144 scale

 

Cheers Ray whatactuallybuiltoneofthesein1970

Just like the real thing! I walked through an An-12 once, you can trip and break a leg on the rivets in the load floor. Harland and Wolff must have been the sub-contractors.

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