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Saturday, 30 January 2010

Airfix Auster AOP VI

A 1981 vintage Airfix 1/72 scale kit of the Auster AOP VI (manufactured in France rather than the UK - the quality of the packaging is much poorer than the British made kits!).

The aircraft depicted on the box top flew with No 651 Light Aircraft Squadron Army Air Corps based at Middle Wallop in the early 1960's.

The prototype Auster AOP (Air Observation Post) VI first flew on 1st May 1945 and entered service with the RAF in September 1946.

It served in many theatres including Malaya during the emergency, in the Middle East and Germany as well as in the UK. The mark VI remained in service until around 1955 when it was replaced by the AOP 9.

Approximately 400 aircraft were built. Apart from the RAF, the Auster AOP also served with the Belgian Air Force and many Commonwealth Air Forces.

An example of this kit is currently for sale on E-bay here.

Further reading/sites which may be of interest.....

Airfix Henschel Hs 123-1

Auster AOP VI pics

Matchbox Hawker Fury

Please feel free to leave a comment.... they are always very welcome!

Friday, 22 January 2010

Airfix 1930 4.5 Litre Bentley

A classic Airfix 1/32 scale kit from 1981 of a 4.5 litre supercharged "blower" Bentley.

The Bentley Motor Company was founded in 1919. Before designing and building cars, it's founder Walter Owen Bentley was known for making rotary aero engines for First World War aircraft such as the Sopwith Camel.

The 4.5 litre Bentley evolved from the earlier 3 litre model and first appeared in 1926.

In 1927 a 4.5 litre Bentley was entered in the Le Mans 24 hour race but crashed out. However, he following year another car Bentley driven by Woolf Barnato and Bernard Rubin claimed Bentley's first Le Mans victory.

The first supercharged Bentley was a 3 litre model which had been modified in 1926.

Walter Owen Bentley hated the supercharged car and it's designer Henry Birkin decided to develop the "blower" Bentley as a private venture.

In 1929 he set up a workshop in Welwyn Garden City with a team of former Bentley mechanics. They produced a team of four supercharged Bentleys—three road cars to compete at Le Mans and a single seater track car mainly for use at Brooklands.

The supercharged engines were definitely not green!

A non-supercharged Bentley had a fuel consumption of about 17.5 miles per gallon, at 100 mph whereas the "blower" Bentley had a fuel consumption of only 2.8 miles per gallon at 100 mph.

Despite their promise the 4.5 litre "blower" Bentleys never achieved a major racing success due to their poor durability.

W O Bentley later went on to develop the larger 6.5 litre car that gained back to back Le Mans victories in 1929 and 1930.

In 1931 Bentley was taken over by Rolls Royce and is now part of the Volkswagen group.

If you are interested in motor sports, why not visit the Lights 2 Flag blog.?

Monday, 18 January 2010

Matchbox F-86A/5 Sabre PK-32

A mid 1970's Matchbox 1/72 scale two colour kit (number PK-32) of the North American F-86A/5 Sabre.

The box lid shows an aircraft of the USAF 4th Fighter Interceptor Wing operating in Korea on 8th July 1951.

The Sabre first entered into service with the US Air Force in 1949 and was the most widely used US fighter aircraft during the Korean War where it fought with great success against Soviet built MiG-15's.

The Sabre remained in front line USAF service until 1956 but was widely exported to other countries. The total production ran to nearly ten thousand aircraft including versions built under licence in countries such as Canada, Australia and Japan.

The aircraft was used by the Pakistan Air Force in the wars against India in 1965 and 1971 both as a fighter and ground attack aircraft.

The last country to use the Sabre in front line service was Bolivia where it remained operational until 1994.

I cam across the following video about the Sabre which I hope you will find of interest....

An example of this kit is currently for sale on e-bay here.

If you have enjoyed this post you may also like....

Matchbox Hawker Fury

Sunday, 17 January 2010

Matchbox Hawker Fury PK-1

1/72 scale Matchbox two colour kit Pk-1 which first appeared in 1973 of a Hawker Fury biplane.

The aircraft pictured on the box top flew with the RAF's 43 Squadron known as the "Fighting Cocks".

The Hawker Fury (originally named Hawker Hornet) entered service with the RAF in 1931 and served as a front line fighter with several squadrons until 1939 when it was replaced by more modern aircraft such as the Hurricane.

Apart from service with the RAF the Fury was also used by a number of foreign air forces including Spain, Yugoslavia, South Africa and Persia.

The Yugoslav Air Force operated the Fury against the Luftwaffe in 1941 but it was by that time a poor match for the superior German 109's.

The kit also contains decal options for a Yugoslavian Air Force aircraft.

An example of this kit is currently for sale on e-bay here.

If you have enjoyed this post, you may also like....

Airfix Henschel Hs 123-1

Novo Supermarine S 6B seaplane

Revell Sopwith Camel

Novo Supermarine S 6B Racing Seaplane - F164

Novo was a plastic model kit manufacturer based in the USSR. In the late 1970's they bought many of the moulds from defunct UK company Frog.

This 1/72 scale kit is of Supermarine S 6B seaplane S1595.

On 13th September 1931, Flight Lieutenant J N Bootham, flying S1595 won the coveted Schneider Trophy at an average speed of 340.08 mph.

Sixteen days later, Flight Lieutenant G H Stainforth flew the same aircraft at an average speed of 407 mph - an new world record at that time.

Following their pioneering work on the S 6B, the Supermarine company later went on to design and build the iconic Spitfire.

An example of this rare kit is currently for sale on e-bay here.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Airfix Henschel Hs 123-1

This 1/72 scale Airfix kit which dates back to the late 1970's is of a Henschel Hs 123-1 single seat dive bomber/ground attack aircraft.

The aircraft pictured was used during the Spanish Civil War by the Condor Legion.

The Condor Legion was a unit composed of "volunteers" from the Luftwaffe and from the German Army which served alongside General Francisco Franco's Nationalists against the Communists between 1936 and 1939.

It gave the Germans an excellent opportunity to test their aircraft and tactics as well as provide their pilots with combat experience before the start of the Second World War.

The Henschel Hs 123-1 first flew in 1935 and remained in service with the Luftwaffe until as late as 1944.

It was active in many theatres during the Second World War including the German attack on Poland in 1939 and the Blitzkrieg of 1940 as well as later in the Balkans and on the Eastern Front.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Revell Sopwith Camel - H.628

Welcome to the Vintage Model Kit blog!

I have decided to start this blog to show case some of the classic kits contained in my vintage model collection.

I particularly enjoy looking at the quality box top art which is sadly lacking in modern plastic model kits.

I really hope you too will enjoy reading this blog and would be very pleased to receive your comments!

For my inaugural post, I am showing the 1/72 scale Revell Sopwith Camel kit number H-628 which dates back to around 1964. Unlike Revell kits today, this one was manufactured by Revell (Great Britain) Ltd in Potters Bar, Hertfordshire.

The kit was one of a series that Revell produced of World War 1 aircraft which included amongst others, the Spad XIII, the Fokker DV11, the SE-5A and the Nieuport 28.

The Sopwith Camel first entered service with the Royal Flying Corps in July 1917 and proved very capable on the Western Front. It had a wingspan of 28' and a length of 18'6". It's service ceiling was 18000 feet.

It's most reknowned World War 1 victory was the shooting down of the infamous Red Baron - Manfred von Richthofen by Captain Roy Brown on 21st April 1918.

The Revell model kit represents Captain Brown's Sopwith Camel F-1 of 209 Squadron RFC.

A similar kit to this one is currently for sale on E-bay. Please click here