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Geoffrey Neville ‘Wicko’ Wikner was a self-taught Australian aircraft builder of Swedish descent. Having designed and successfully flown a series of home-built aircraft in his home country, Wikner had become disillusioned by a lack of support from the Australian aviation authorities, who he felt were effectively thwarting his attempts to build light aircraft in the country.

 

Thus, he decided to follow in the footsteps of his illustrious uncle, Edgar Wikner Percival and re-locate to England. After several years working in various aeronautical jobs, notably for Miles, Wikner entered into partnership with one Jack Foster and furniture manufacturer Lusty & Sons, to design a new plywood lightplane suitable for factory manufacture or home-building. The prototype was built in Lusty’s furniture works in the East End of London and powered by a modified Ford V8 car engine, made its first flight in 1936. Despite it’s racy, bullet-nosed appearance, it was seriously underpowered.

 

A couple of years (and engine changes) later, it finally entered production in a factory at Southampton airport (Eastleigh), with the popular DH Gipsy Major engine as the definitive powerplant, which gave it the desired performance. After only a year of production, which resulted in 11 airframes , WW2 intervened and brought things to a halt. Most of the planes had found ready buyers in flying clubs, with 2 having gone abroad to New Zealand and South Africa.

 

All were readily impressed  for military service, where they were mainly used for ferrying ATA pilots around the country. In fact, a military version optimised for this activity was proposed, to be named ‘Warferry’, but came to nothing as the Lend-Lease Fairchild Argus was used instead.

 

Several aircraft survived the war and took part in King’s Cup races in the 1950s. Ultimately, only a single aircraft, G-AJFB has survived to the present day, which underwent a complete restoration to better than new condition in the 2000s :

http://www.wicko.com/

 

Here is my model of this aircraft, in its original 1938 colours. It was donated to the Midland Aeroclub, Pendeford, Wolverhampton, by the Wolverhampton Express and Star newspaper, on the condition that it was used for training 4 local youngsters to fly as part of the Civil Air Guard scheme and was named ‘Wulfrun II’ (after the Anglo-Saxon woman who founded Wolverhampton).

 

Model is 100% scratchbuilt from plastic sheet. With its boxy shape, I thought it would be a straightforward scratchbuilding project, but the complex colour scheme and window arrangement elevated it into a more challenging category....

 

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A few WiPs :

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Well, my gob is well and truly smacked - a delightful little model, beautifully built and finished. Well done and this Antipodean is completely green with envy. Thanks fro sharing your in-progress and competed images.

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Lovely job! I've liked the looks of the Wicko since way back when 'FJB used to sit in a garden (down south somewhere?) and was often illustrated in Wrecks and Relics. Saw it at Goodwood a while ago :)

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If you had not put the match as a reference in the first photograph and only the following photos, I would have believed that it was in 1/32 scale or at least in 1/48.

Very very very good job!!! :clap:

Andrés.

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17 hours ago, Roger Holden said:

All were readily impressed  for military service, where they were mainly used for ferrying ATA pilots around the country. In fact, a military version optimised for this activity was proposed, to be named ‘Warferry’, but came to nothing as the Lend-Lease Fairchild Argus was used instead.

 

Several aircraft survived the war and took part in King’s Cup races in the 1950s. Ultimately, only a single aircraft, G-AJFB has survived to the present day, which underwent a complete restoration to better than new condition in the 2000s :

http://www.wicko.com/

That's a beautiful build Roger :clap:

There was a recent article in Aeroplane about Wikner and his aeroplanes, (April 2022) by Arthur Orde-Hume, one Wicko G-AFKS was modified to to the proposed Warferry production standard, and impressed civillian Wicko's were referred to as Warferries in military service though none of the  modifications were made to them. Wickner himself served in the ATA during the war and often flew his Wicko's ferrying pilots to pick up other aircraft.

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What a beautiful model! These sorts of models are the ones I enjoy looking at most of all: unusual types (I’d never heard of this one before!) built with skill and dedication. Long may you continue!

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What a beautiful work! Amazing scratchbuilding skills and very tidy build from the start to the final point, extremely convincing and perfect execution! Hats off!

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3 hours ago, Dave Swindell said:

That's a beautiful build Roger :clap:

There was a recent article in Aeroplane about Wikner and his aeroplanes, (April 2022) by Arthur Orde-Hume, one Wicko G-AFKS was modified to to the proposed Warferry production standard, and impressed civillian Wicko's were referred to as Warferries in military service though none of the  modifications were made to them. Wickner himself served in the ATA during the war and often flew his Wicko's ferrying pilots to pick up other aircraft.

Thanks Dave.  I saw Orde-Hume's article in AM, but didn't buy it as I already had quite a lot on the plane. Ord-Hume has also done quite a good article on the Key Publishing website. Not sure if it's the same article:

https://www.key.aero/article/designing-foster-wikner-wicko

Best articles are probably the 4-parter on Wikner's monoplanes in Air-Britain civil mag, last 2 of which cover the Wicko.

 

15 hours ago, Sabrejet said:

Lovely job! I've liked the looks of the Wicko since way back when 'FJB used to sit in a garden (down south somewhere?) and was often illustrated in Wrecks and Relics. Saw it at Goodwood a while ago :)

I've always liked it, but never had enough info for a model. Then I found the restoration website, which had lots of detail photos taken as the restoration progressed, which were ideal for modelling. Unfortunately they chose to give it one of the colour schemes worn by the prototype, rather than the correct version for 'FJB, as depicted by my model.

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22 minutes ago, Squibby said:

How do you cut and form plasticard so cleanly and accurately at that scale.

 

Lots and lots of practice (40+ years). Started in my early teens and found it difficult to make everything square and precise to start with, but got better tools and plenty of practice until it became second-nature.  There are multiple disciplines in modelling. Some people are best at painting, I'm best at whittling plastic.

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11 minutes ago, Roger Holden said:

Lots and lots of practice (40+ years). Started in my early teens and found it difficult to make everything square and precise to start with, but got better tools and plenty of practice until it became second-nature.  There are multiple disciplines in modelling. Some people are best at painting, I'm best at whittling plastic.

No, you are best in everything! Usually scratch builders fail in other areas of building process, but you executed it flawlessly from A to Z!

Just look at your tail skid! What a jewel in 1/72!!!

Edited by MarkoZG
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4 hours ago, lasermonkey said:

These sorts of models are the ones I enjoy looking at most of all: unusual types (I’d never heard of this one before!) built with skill and dedication. 

 

Cheers LM.......Me too !

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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, MarkoZG said:

No, you are best in everything! Usually scratch builders fail in other areas of building process, but you executed it flawlessly from A to Z!

Thanks Marko !  Nice of you to say so.  But let's say, there are some aspects I find more challenging than others....

Edited by Roger Holden
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17 minutes ago, MarkoZG said:

Just look at your tail skid! What a jewel in 1/72!!!

Ha, yes !    Made of 16 pieces....

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