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Airfix' next large scale model?


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1 hour ago, Tony T said:

 


C'mon Airfix, we love you, but up your game with clear parts, maybe providing the kiddy version and grown-ups version on the same clear sprue. 

 

 


Tony 

I have three 1/72 Lancasters from Airfix, currently the most accurate BMk.1/111 on the market, and all three have spiders in the clear parts, you know the ones where the plastic meets in the tool and causes faint lines in the clear part. I contacted Airfix and was told it was part of the moulding process. I replied with a comment like, so why dont Tamiya, Trumpeter, Hobbyboss, Eduard, Hasegawa and so on have this issue if it's a part of the manufacturing process? "I suggest you need to look at your process and make adjustments in media/tool temperature, media being used, flow paths within the tool and injection pressures" I said... funnily enough, I had no reply?????

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15 hours ago, npb748r said:

the general lack of new 1/32 kits being released from Far Eastern companies plus the lack of availability of existing kits (at least here in the UK) makes me wonder if we will see a new 1/24 aircraft from them in the short to medium term.  I'm normally a glass half full person and no expert but it sort of feels like we might be on a downward trend ? Manufacturers like Hasagawa and Trumpeter seem to be no longer supplying the full range of existing kits, thankfully the Eastern European manufacturers continue to release not only new kits but new subjects. If these weren't being produced the supply side of the market would seem a little stalled ? It's not clear to me what the demand side looks like, those of us on forums like this one clearly want more but beyond this, is there still demand ??  With prices of what seems like everything increasing (here in the UK it's not clear how much is Brexit related and how much is Covid so not sure what it's like in other countries) coupled with the energy prices sky rocketing,  for those of us living on a pension or on average to low wages I'm sure money will now be prioritised on essentials. I hope I'm wrong but I suspect the answer to the question in the title of the thread is nothing planned at present. 

Good points. If 1/32 is a niche within a niche 1/24 is. What we want on the forums and what they want to produce for sales are different things. As a general rule anyway. 

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16 hours ago, Nigels modelling bench said:

I have three 1/72 Lancasters from Airfix, currently the most accurate BMk.1/111 on the market, and all three have spiders in the clear parts, you know the ones where the plastic meets in the tool and causes faint lines in the clear part. I contacted Airfix and was told it was part of the moulding process. I replied with a comment like, so why dont Tamiya, Trumpeter, Hobbyboss, Eduard, Hasegawa and so on have this issue if it's a part of the manufacturing process? "I suggest you need to look at your process and make adjustments in media/tool temperature, media being used, flow paths within the tool and injection pressures" I said... funnily enough, I had no reply?????

Yes, it is a part of the moulding process, but what Airfix didn't want to admit (either through ignorance or embarassment) is that it stems from poor tool design.  You need a single gate per part to avoid these "knitlines".  They are caused by the "cold front" of the plastic merging and not "fusing" because of the slightly lower temperature on that "cold" front. By filling the cavity of a clear part from a single gate, you won't have that problem.  Airfix' product designers define the shapes and geometry of the kit, but may not have influence on the layout of the gates - that part should be down to the tool designer.  Do Airfix have in-house tool designers?  I'd have thought that they would be near the toolmakers that I believe are based in China.  Even so, this problem should have been highlighted to the designers at the test shot stage, and rectified then, so Airfix are partly to blame for this.

 

Incidentally, the same problem existed with Kinetic's F-5A kit.  I emailed Raymond about the problem as well as the solution, and he replied he was aware of it.  Wouldn't want to claim that I fixed it for them, Kinetic did later change the gate to a single one per part, and the problem went away.  Still had to pay for new (and faultless) transparencies though...

Edited by jenshb
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3 hours ago, jenshb said:

Yes, it is a part of the moulding process, but what Airfix didn't want to admit (either through ignorance or embarassment) is that it stems from poor tool design.  You need a single gate per part to avoid these "knitlines".  They are caused by the "cold front" of the plastic merging and not "fusing" because of the slightly lower temperature on that "cold" front. By filling the cavity of a clear part from a single gate, you won't have that problem.  Airfix' product designers define the shapes and geometry of the kit, but may not have influence on the layout of the gates - that part should be down to the tool designer.  Do Airfix have in-house tool designers?  I'd have thought that they would be near the toolmakers that I believe are based in China.  Even so, this problem should have been highlighted to the designers at the test shot stage, and rectified then, so Airfix are partly to blame for this.

 

Incidentally, the same problem existed with Kinetic's F-5A kit.  I emailed Raymond about the problem as well as the solution, and he replied he was aware of it.  Wouldn't want to claim that I fixed it for them, Kinetic did later change the gate to a single one per part, and the problem went away.  Still had to pay for new (and faultless) transparencies though...

 

Agree 100%. like I said in one of my Vulcan build videos.. "If Airfix had designed the kit, then given the tool design and production to Tamiya, we would have a perfect kit"

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How about a 1/24 P-39. A model would be smaller than the 1/24 Spitfire and would have an easily viewable detailed cockpit, forward gun bay, wing guns and Allison engine. The aircraft was flown by a variety of forces which would only serve to enhance its sales internationally. Besides, it's a good looking aircraft. I'd buy one.

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2 hours ago, Grizly said:

How about a 1/24 P-39. A model would be smaller than the 1/24 Spitfire and would have an easily viewable detailed cockpit, forward gun bay, wing guns and Allison engine. The aircraft was flown by a variety of forces which would only serve to enhance its sales internationally. Besides, it's a good looking aircraft. I'd buy one.

 

Because the RAF **hated** the P-39 and got rid of them as fast as ever they could.

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On 11/25/2021 at 6:04 AM, Shoggz said:

Having built a number of their recent 1/48 offerings over the last couple of years, I'd say some of the comments about Airfix in this thread are a little harsh.

 

Couldn't agree more. Scale modeling is better for the company's move into 1/48. Keep 'em coming.

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On 11/25/2021 at 10:29 AM, nmayhew said:

As an Englishman there will always be a warm nostalgic place in my heart for Airfix (and Matchbox for that matter) - they are what I grew up with in the late 70s when every corner shop in every sleepy little village had kits for sale.

 

Now, putting down those English rose-tinted spectacles...

 

Airfix is very much a joke in other modelling groups I am a member of, and deservedly so. With the exception of their 3 modern 1/24 kits there is nothing in their aircraft catalogue that is worthy of consideration; and even then I have seen quite a few builds of the Typhoon and the Hellcat which show enough to put me off starting my Tiffie.

In their 1/72 and 1/48 kits, their engineering looks like it is a generation behind - I love the Star Wars trench run analogy! - and their quality control is legendary for all the wrong reasons.

 

The only cause for optimism I can see is in armour, and shown in their new 1/35 Cromwell - I am a keen armour modeller and by all accounts (experts on Missing-Lynx), this is a pretty decent kit.

 

Despite all their problems they still have an ultra-loyal following here which i find a mixture of annoying and sad to be honest - they can't all be people of my generation (born '72), so there must still be lots who just don't know any better, brainwashed by the Florys of this world, and those who no doubt chant "gloss before decals" lol.

 

The F6F-3 seems most likely next 1/24 release to me, and provided the kit didn't have more Flash than Gordon (see what I did there, or am i just showing my age again?) I might consider it.

 

But unless they completely change their modus operandi and up their game, I just don't see AIrfix in my aircraft modelling future (small 'f') in any way, beyond being the butt of Star Wars jokes, and t-shirts at modelling shows ("Airfux").

 

Nick

 

Hi Nick.

 

I totally agree with your analysis. I got the same relationship with Matchbox and Airfix when I was a child! However, even if I'm appreciating the rebirth of the brand for nostalgic reasons, my brain of 1/35-1/32 kits modeller is not really impressed. Their AFV models are just a reboxing of the Academy kits. This gives me the feeling they just want to get their share of the 1/35 profitable market as they already did close to 50 years ago! Old recipe...<_<

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