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Kit builders, what would you like???

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Jon - Laser Engines21/04/2016 21:18:21
5621 forum posts
271 photos

Hi Guys

Following a number of conversations with Richard at Warbird Replica's we are running a little poll on what sort of kit you as a kit builder would like to buy.

Now, a little background to this is that at my club a group of us as building WWII fighters (all bought from Richard) as a group winter build and we are having a superb time. But having spoken with Richard at length about which of his kits are the most popular, and the sort of kits that we (myself and my winter build buddies) would like to build and see available, we have seen a stark trend towards Spitfireitus. That is to say, anything that is not a Spitfire tends to fall flat on its face from a commercial point of view. There are other trends and its hard to find something that people really get into.

So, with this in mind, what kits would you like to see??

The parameters of real interest are:

Size - 40 size? 60? 120 4 stroke???

Construction - Foam wings and decks for a simple/quick build and really tough model, or a Laser cut jigsaw puzzle?

Which model - More warbirds? if so what would you like to see? A Tempest? A Whirlwind? or production versions of Richards Ju88 and Yak3 prototypes. What else would you like??

Obviously things like compatibility with ic/electric powerplants is a given. A battery hatch can be a fuel tank hatch and all that so powerplants are covered. But what else would you like, and more importantly what would you actually buy, build and fly and what cost would you find acceptable as some kits/plan packs can easily get out of control cost wise.

As an example of costs, the Warbirds Hurricane which I am building costs £140 and the black horse artf version is currently discounted at £210. So if you ignore the things you need for both (engine, retracts, radio etc) could you finish the kit structure for 70 quid? I'm pretty sure I have and I have a much more personal model and (I hope!!) much longer lived due to its more robust construction.

So, there we are. Let us know what you think and what you would like. Richard will be posting with greater detail of what he can do in response to your comments.

Robert Parker21/04/2016 22:14:44
996 forum posts
1353 photos

Hi John,

I love building kits and have done so since I started this hobby back in 1990.

Engine sizes are around the 40-60 size

My main constraint is wingspan up to 80" due to my flying field plus transportation / storage constraints.

Warbirds from both ww's have take my fancy.

As to type of kit ie foam wings / decks etc or fully built up. It depends on my mood or weather I want to build, I build both though I do enjoy a built up wing.

As for the model I like to be a bit different, but there again turning up with a model that has been kit built and in a colour scheme of your choice can be different even a spitfire in racing colours can create a bit of interest on the flight line. I am enjoying Richards Ju88 build. What about an Aircobra, boomarang (wwIi), wellington or what about a FW Condor.

As for costs I would pay up to around £170 or a bit more if it were a multi engined



Dave Hopkin21/04/2016 22:23:23
3672 forum posts
294 photos

Stand off Scale.............

60-72" Span..........

0.46 to 0.60 Sized......


Hawker Fury

PZL 11



john stones 121/04/2016 22:28:01
11646 forum posts
1517 photos

FW 190, probably a Dora because of c.g issue, construction ? whichever will build the lightest.120 size and convert to petrol.


RICHARD WILLS21/04/2016 22:30:33
564 forum posts
86 photos

keep it coming chaps ,, i'm all ears (except the bits that arent).


bouncebounce crunch21/04/2016 22:38:25
1739 forum posts
212 photos

G'day John

I feel that Arfs including bind and fly foamies saturate us with British, US, German and Russian warbirds, but lack much more than a Zero from the Japanese warbirds.

So for me a 40-60 size Japanese warbird.


Jon - Laser Engines21/04/2016 22:43:23
5621 forum posts
271 photos

Yes! someone said Gladiator!

As Richard knows my preferences are (in no order)

Gladiator - about 60 inch
Whirlwind - about 72inch
Mozzie or Hornet - about 72 inch
FW190 would be nice - about 60 inch or perhaps a bigger one at 70 for 120 size 4 stroke
Beaufighter would be fun - nearer 80 inch.

I also agree that stand off scale is fine but not to the degree of some ARTF kits where you can only just about make out what it is supposed to be. The Yak, Hurricane, Spit and La7 all have it right imo

I am also in favour of 60-80 inch spans for ease of transport and storage. I think £170 ish is a good place to be for a 70 inch twin like the Ju88. I really want a Whirlwind so I can get stuck into those super complicated flaps :D

Speaking of which, as Richard knows one of best things about our winter build has been that because the base kit is so simple we have been able to dedicate our building time to detailing and adding extras like flaps, lights, scale hatches or whatever. I think this is a great selling point as you can either throw it together and have it look pretty good and fly well, or go to town and have the same model in flight but with your own touches and better looks on the ground. Its nice to have the choice and not all kits give that.

RICHARD WILLS22/04/2016 09:09:58
564 forum posts
86 photos

I do agree that the big manufacturers tend to stick to mainstream models , but of course they are gambling on large production runs.

Most people in the hobby assume that far more models are being sold than the reality (at least in the UK) .

If you think about how many warbirds turn up at your club as a percentage of the members , you can soon figure out the numbers are pretty small up and down the country ,

The good news is that with laser cutting and 3D printing we can afford to embark on a kit that will only sell a few couple of hundred kits total over say two years . The large manufacturers couldnt afford to do that ,

That is worth considering when you "make a wish" . Are there other people that you know that would want that particular kit? Ive always like the Macchi 202 but I seem to be mostly on my own there !

The twin market seems very untapped . One of our early competitors was Aerotech of the 1990s and although they had a very mixed reputation they did introduce a range of quick build twins that lots of us got very excited about . They didnt involve the epic that was a Brian Taylor build but you could produce a big twin very quickly .

Ok , they wanted quite few mods to make them fly sometimes , but the concept was great ,

I guess our 88 is exactly that but without the bugs.

Electric makes things a whole lot easier too . What do we think chaps?

David Davis22/04/2016 09:32:53
3841 forum posts
741 photos

Ilyushin IL2 Stormovik. Soviet WW2 two-seater ground attack aircraft.

With all that wing and tail area it should fly beautifully. I have never installed retracts in a model so would need some help with that, especially as the IL2 features a fore-and-aft retractable undercarriage.

Jon Laughton22/04/2016 09:47:13
1226 forum posts
72 photos

Jon, I would be happy with a 60 - 90 T/S or 120 F/S sized warbird. Prefer foam wings and suitably moulded cowls etc.

As for the choice: Martin Baker MB5, Tempest, Fairey Firefly or FW 190. A nice larger scale non-foam EDF powered Me 262 wood be great as well?


IanR22/04/2016 09:47:56
780 forum posts
4 photos

72" P-38 Lightning - drool.

Giuseppe Saroli22/04/2016 09:57:08
195 forum posts
1 photos

Nieuport 28c plus Aeronca C3 plus Mercury IV plus Savage Bobber pleaseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

Stumps22/04/2016 10:02:55
53 forum posts

A 1/6th Hurricane ~ something like the old Mick Reeves job ~ simple to put together but had the right outline. That one looked good from a distance and flew really well too.

Bob Cotsford22/04/2016 10:04:39
8746 forum posts
489 photos
Posted by David Davis on 22/04/2016 09:32:53:

Ilyushin IL2 Stormovik. Soviet WW2 two-seater ground attack aircraft.

With all that wing and tail area it should fly beautifully. I have never installed retracts in a model so would need some help with that, especially as the IL2 features a fore-and-aft retractable undercarriage.

Another vote for the IL2, 90-1.20 4 stroke. An accurate outline would be nice, but character scale is ok too. Tempest- yes please! Eastern block or European stuff that doesn't get covered - Dewoutines, Macchis, Polikarpovs.

How about the early fixed U/C stuff, Mitsubichi 5M or a Ki36, for the US a P26 Peashooter?

Andy Meade22/04/2016 10:05:38
2784 forum posts
717 photos

Full laser cut kit (no foam) FW190 A-series, to suit 1.20 four-stroke.

A big P38 would be nice too, as Ian mentioned.

1.20 sized Hawker Tempest


Jon - Laser Engines22/04/2016 10:27:51
5621 forum posts
271 photos
Posted by Stumps on 22/04/2016 10:02:55:

A 1/6th Hurricane ~ something like the old Mick Reeves job ~ simple to put together but had the right outline. That one looked good from a distance and flew really well too.

As a Hurricane lover this is a good shout. My MR Hurricane was nice but was lacking somewhat in the scale outline as it lacked the 3 piece wing of the much smaller warbirds kit and this did irritate me a bit. if Richard's existing Hurricane was scaled up to 80 inch and flying weight of 14-18lbs that would be well within reach of 120-200 4 strokes or petrol 20-30cc.

An il2 would be really interesting and should fly very well, but how many people really know about the il2?

FW190 and P38? cant go wrong!

David Pearce 422/04/2016 10:44:33
319 forum posts
37 photos

Please, please, please:

A Westland Whirlwind sized for 2x 3S or 4S. Often talked about but never available!

Thank you in anticipation! 

Edited By David Pearce 4 on 22/04/2016 10:45:10

David Davis22/04/2016 11:05:06
3841 forum posts
741 photos
Posted by Jon Harper - Laser Engines on 22/04/2016 10:27:51:

An il2 would be really interesting and should fly very well, but how many people really know about the il2?

Perhaps they should do. It was the aircraft which more than any other, defeated the German Army in WW2.

Jon - Laser Engines22/04/2016 11:30:19
5621 forum posts
271 photos

i agree with you DD but alas not many people know about it.

DP, a 72'' whirlwind would work on that power setup would it not? A pair of 4s's with the motors Richard has for the Spitfire would do the job really nicely.

Personally i would use engines, but i know that electric twins are seen as more reliable and less daunting by many

Dave Hopkin22/04/2016 11:44:04
3672 forum posts
294 photos

So many aircraft....

Avro Anson

Ford Trimotor or JU-52

Shorts Sunderland

Airspeed Auster

Bristol Blendhiem

Bristol Beaufighter

Bolton Paul Defiant

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