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"1/24 "super kits"" Topic

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698 hits since 14 Jul 2023
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4th Cuirassier14 Jul 2023 5:08 a.m. PST

Does anyone build these? They have no use in wargaming obviously.

What eventually became my lifelong interest in wargaming and military history came about in large measure because of Airfix. My older brother's school timetable included a hobby hour, during which you could bring in your hobby and do it at school (they had done away with this, the b@st@rds, by the time I got into the same year). If you didn't have a hobby, there were various suggestions, one of which was an Airfix kit. Nobody had heard of Airfix kits in our household, but the parents duly decided that this would be my brother's hobby, so one was chosen for him either by Mother or the shopkeeper. This very first-ever Airfix kit was a Honda CB450 motorbike, and a worse choice as first Airfix kit for a seven-year-old you could scarcely imagine. It consisted entirely of small and fiddly parts that you could easily lose, break, fit back to front or dissolve with excess glue. I don't recall that it was ever finished. A few years ago I bought one for myself second-hand off eBay and I still failed to build it, even though I was 47 rather than 7. Nonetheless we were enchanted by Airfix and for several years from then on, the price of a Series One Airfix kit determined our weekly pocket money.

The really huge and desirable kits such as The Big Spitfire – 1/24 scale and in 1971 it sold for £1.99 GBP – were on the highest shop shelves above, out of reach in every sense. A Series 1 kit was, in 1971, £0.17 GBP, so in relative terms The Big Spitfire would be £70.00 GBP in today's money. You can still buy the very same kit, usually for quite a bit less, and I have done so since several times.

I've also built the 1/24 Hurricane, Stuka, and Me109. I've got the Mk V Spitfire on the bench and the new Mk IX Spitfire in the stash, along with another Hurricane and another Me109. Just for fun the Spit V is going to be Free French, the Hurri Irish and the Me109 Romanian.

I have yet to do the Mustang, FW190 (apparently you have to omit the back half of the engine to get the cowling on), Mosquito, Typhoon or Hellcat. Others have now entered the space too, with 1/24 109G6, Zero etc now out there.

The issue is where you put them I suppose. I would definitely clear space somewhere for a 1/24 Me262 though, should such a thing ever come about. A 1/24 Buffalo would have tremendous re-issue potential as RAF, RAAF, USMC, USN (pre-war and wartime), and Finnish versions, but everyone thinks it's a dud so I doubt it will happen.

Jeffers14 Jul 2023 5:28 a.m. PST

The 1/24 Hurricane was my Christmas present in 1974, probably because my dad wanted a bash at a bigger model! Completely useless to me as it didn't fit with my 1/32 stuff, so just sat on the shelf for a year until being relegated to a box in the loft. Wish they had stuck to 1/32 and then could have released ground crew in the multipose range, but that's Airfix for you.

Griefbringer14 Jul 2023 5:31 a.m. PST

They have no use in wargaming obviously.

Couldn't they be used for summer time gaming in the backyard? Would need to come up with suitably sturdy flight stands that would be stable on rough ground, though.

Inch High Guy14 Jul 2023 5:34 a.m. PST

A potential solution to the display area problem is to hang the aircraft on the wall by their tailwheels, provided you have the wall space of course. I have been considering that for my larger builds as I am running out of display cases.

4th Cuirassier14 Jul 2023 5:43 a.m. PST

@ Griefbringer

Stands would be an issue.

I did once see at a convention a tank combat game where, instead of using miniatures, the players just sat in the positions of the crew of a tank. They were then fed cues as to what they could see, which they responded to. I wonder if something similar could be done with aircraft?

There used to be a form of wargame – based around WW1 combat – where each player had a booklet with a scene on each page and a range of numbered move options. Each declared their manoeuvres to each other as one of the numbered options and then turned to the page indicated, which showed you what you could now see. Eventually you got to the point where your page showed you either spraying or being sprayed with machine-gun fire. I wonder if you could use oversize models in that way?

@ Inch High Guy

Yes, same idea here – mount them flat to the wall so they use wall space rather than shelf space.

cloudcaptain14 Jul 2023 7:17 p.m. PST

I game in 1/18! 1/24 is a cakewalk :) A friend uses inverted tomato cages to support his aircraft.

Zephyr115 Jul 2023 9:54 p.m. PST

I used to glide model aircraft underwater across the pool (deep end to shallow, for easier recovery ;-) The 1/48 B-17 could make it all the way (about 25 ft), so 1/24 probably would have also been fun for that. Just wish I could have found small electric motors to run the propellors… ;-)

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