In a previous life as a professional modelmaker......


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30 November 2007
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As requested by Triton, here is a photograph from Spring/Summer 2007 showing some "REAL" modelmaking. This is a full scale model, one of a pair made for Paris 2007. It dismantled to fit inside a crate but was an unfeasible model given that it was heavier than the real aircraft. The model was fibreglass but needed an internal steel skeleton for stability; not surprisingly it came out overweight and kept coming back to the factory for repairs (the undercarriage kept collapsing during transit)......

We made everything from 1/400 scale up to full size......

Terry (Caravellarella)


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Gosh! Making full-scale mock-ups that are heavier than the original article? This sounds insane!
Dear Stargazer2006, insanity is an understatement! I was trying make sure the core business of 1/100, 1/50 and 1/36 scale mass-produced marketing tool models was running smoothly. The then new owners thought the big prestigious models were where the money was (so wrong)......

We made a full scale jet airliner turbofan (which had opening panels which wouldn't close properly); some full scale UAVs and weapon systems, all insane! There was even talk of accepting a contract to make a full scale Gripen fighter jet which had to be strong enough to hold and carry a proper Gripen cockpit with a real ejection seat. I pointed out that we couldn't fit a full scale Gripen onto the factory floor and the amount of steel work required to carry the cockpit would be inordinately heavy......

The owners did something very naughty; I bailed out (went back into publishing) and the company went bust after over 40 years of trading; very, very sad. Now many of my friends who spent their entire working lives there are outof work or are no longer professional modelmakers. Very sad......

Do you want to see more photographs? I generally only took photographs of the models that I actually made myself; which isn't many as I spent most of time there in management or administrative work......

Terry (Caravellarella)
No question about that! It is great that you've made photos of your work. Hope you won't infringe on any contractor's secrecy. Or maybe you're no longer bound, now that the company's closed? ;D ::)

Well, anyway, publishing can also be an insane world, but hopefully you are much less likely to develop a Tourette-like disorder... ;)
Dear Stargazer, herewith some very old photographs of models that my friend had made at the same factory (probably over 20 years ago now). I don't have any idea what aircraft designs they represent, but the jet fighters were most likely 1/48 scale mass-produced (in the simplest form with solid cockpits). The metal tripod stands used were about 4½" or 115mm tall......

Terry (Caravellarella)


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Wow! Awesome find, Caravellarella!!! These are British Aerospace projects!
Thanks Stargazer; I don't think of them as "awesome" I'm afraid. I saw much more exciting work than these examples in my time with that company......

I'll see if I can find some more pictures for you......

Terry (Caravellarella)
Oh wow! Awesome! The picture at the bottom captures a model of the unbuilt SAAB-108 MULAS. ;D This is wonderful and exciting stuff to us, Terry. It is treasure for us who are enthusiasts of unbuilt aviation and military projects. We are less concerned about the quality of a model and it is exciting to us when a model documents an unbuilt project or documents the evolution of the design of a built project over time.
Overscan, should the photographs of models of unbuilt projects be copied or moved to the "Postwar Aircraft Projects" section? For example, should the photograph capturing the SAAB-108 MULAS model be added to the existing SAAB-108 MULAS topic since these models were official?

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