The London Toy Fair is primarily about ‘toys’, rather than ‘scale models’, but there were plenty of the latter at the show this year, both construction kits and ready-builts.
Pride of place could be new tooling for the venerable 1:72 scale Avro Lancaster. One version will be in dam-busting guise to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the famed World War II mission. The kit will include the Barnes Wallis-designed bouncing bomb, and a loading trolley.
Possibly even more significant is that the standard Merlin-engined Lancaster will be joined in 1:72 scale by the BII version (above, below). This was fitted with Bristol Hercules radial engines, when there was a shortage of the Rolls-Royce power plant.
Recently mentioned in SMN, here is a test-shot of the new 1:48 scale Gloster Javelin delta-wing Cold War era interceptor, the first-ever conventional plastic kit to this scale. The kit comes with air-to-air refuelling probe and access ladder.
New tooling for the twin-boom De Havilland Vampire to 1:72 scale. Note the choice of markings.
A new-tool kit of the 1:72 scale Hawker Typhoon (below) replaces the original kit.
The last Spitfire variant will appear in 1:48 scale. It’s the PR XIX photo-reconnaissance version.
A nicely-made diorama on the stand showed the 1:48 scale Merlin (above, below) along with some same-scale military vehicles and buildings. Note the attention to detail generally, and also behind the side door.
The 1:400 scale German Type VIIC U-boat (below) is a new addition to the Airfix Starter Set range. The VIIC featured in the movie Das Boot, so becomes the first Airfix movie ‘star sub.’
A new range of Quick Build kits is designed for beginners, featuring pre-coloured components that have push- or snap-fit assembly.
*** SMN note: Phew! So there's plenty from Airfix to keep model makers busy through 2013 then. Our vote goes to the Lancaster BII and all the ground support equipment. Oh, and of course the big Merlin. Great opportunities for diorama fans coming up with both kits.
All photos: Mat Irvine 2013.