OK Brewer just gave me the courage to ask this question....

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OK Brewer just gave me the courage to ask this question....

Joined: March 2nd, 2005, 8:00 pm

April 25th, 2012, 4:34 pm #1

Do any of you have any theories as to why Airfix went "backwards" with their Mk.XII kit after the stellar efforts with the Seafire 46/47 and Mk.22/24? In my view the latter were a millennium leap forward but the Mk.XII seems to be far less impressive; not bad but trenches for panel lines and a few other "crudish" moldings. I don't understand why they did that. Obviously money is involved but still I find it disturbing. Doesn't quality mean anything anymore? cheers, LL

So a friend says: "cheer up things could be worse; so I cheered up and sure as hell Things Got Worse!
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Joined: February 15th, 2009, 5:46 am

April 25th, 2012, 5:30 pm #2

are that given what happened to Airfix a few years back that strategy of kits like the 46/47 and 22/24 were clearly not the path they needed to be going down.  But under Hornby they seem to be thriving, so saleswise they're doing the right thing as far as I'm concerned.  The larger mainstream companies have to appeal to a much wider market than just the enthusiastic hard-core detail and accuracy obsessed modelers.  I think the rise and fall of companies like Accurate Miniatures and lines like Monogram's Pro-Modeler kind of proved that it wasn't quite the right time for that type of model to really take hold.  I think it's maybe starting to move towards that direction a little bit, but I think those particular models and companies might have been a little bit ahead of their time.  You've got to please the casual modeler just as much as the hard-core modeler. 
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Joined: February 24th, 2002, 4:17 pm

April 25th, 2012, 6:11 pm #3

Do any of you have any theories as to why Airfix went "backwards" with their Mk.XII kit after the stellar efforts with the Seafire 46/47 and Mk.22/24? In my view the latter were a millennium leap forward but the Mk.XII seems to be far less impressive; not bad but trenches for panel lines and a few other "crudish" moldings. I don't understand why they did that. Obviously money is involved but still I find it disturbing. Doesn't quality mean anything anymore? cheers, LL

So a friend says: "cheer up things could be worse; so I cheered up and sure as hell Things Got Worse!
Last time I commented on the overdone and too deep panel lines on the fuselage, the Airfix villagers came after me with pitchforks and axes.

I know what Roy said below, but I like the overall of the model. But, oh those soft panel lines.

Interestingly, I find the panel lines on the wings to be much better.









There is no such thing as an unbuildable kit, just some kits one may consider not worth building.

Ive realized that most people ... tend not to be direct when they feel something is shoddy because they want to be liked, "which is actually a vain trait".
[Walter Isaacson's (author of Steve Jobs) recounting of his interview with Jony Ive, Chief Designer at Apple @ page p. 461]



BUY THIS BOOK
http://tinyurl.com/Ididntseeitcoming
Last edited by modeldad on April 25th, 2012, 6:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Joined: December 29th, 2002, 11:19 am

April 25th, 2012, 6:20 pm #4

Do any of you have any theories as to why Airfix went "backwards" with their Mk.XII kit after the stellar efforts with the Seafire 46/47 and Mk.22/24? In my view the latter were a millennium leap forward but the Mk.XII seems to be far less impressive; not bad but trenches for panel lines and a few other "crudish" moldings. I don't understand why they did that. Obviously money is involved but still I find it disturbing. Doesn't quality mean anything anymore? cheers, LL

So a friend says: "cheer up things could be worse; so I cheered up and sure as hell Things Got Worse!
Didn't you see what happened to Roy when he posited on quality and model manufacturers the other day? And now you go and single out Airfix. Are you trying to end it all?

bob

p.s. Take a look at the "Seafire III" kit- that'll make you feel better about the Spit XII! But don't spend your own money to get one- I wouldn't do that to you.
"Ignorance is bliss, but I find learning more interesting." - Me, as far as I know
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Joined: February 28th, 2005, 10:42 am

April 25th, 2012, 6:34 pm #5

Do any of you have any theories as to why Airfix went "backwards" with their Mk.XII kit after the stellar efforts with the Seafire 46/47 and Mk.22/24? In my view the latter were a millennium leap forward but the Mk.XII seems to be far less impressive; not bad but trenches for panel lines and a few other "crudish" moldings. I don't understand why they did that. Obviously money is involved but still I find it disturbing. Doesn't quality mean anything anymore? cheers, LL

So a friend says: "cheer up things could be worse; so I cheered up and sure as hell Things Got Worse!
Wouldn't it be possible to build a better Spitfire MkXII by combining the nose of the Airfix kit with the fuselage and wings of an Italeri Spitfire LF MkIX?

Saluti

Giampiero
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Joined: January 22nd, 2008, 2:04 am

April 25th, 2012, 6:43 pm #6

are that given what happened to Airfix a few years back that strategy of kits like the 46/47 and 22/24 were clearly not the path they needed to be going down.  But under Hornby they seem to be thriving, so saleswise they're doing the right thing as far as I'm concerned.  The larger mainstream companies have to appeal to a much wider market than just the enthusiastic hard-core detail and accuracy obsessed modelers.  I think the rise and fall of companies like Accurate Miniatures and lines like Monogram's Pro-Modeler kind of proved that it wasn't quite the right time for that type of model to really take hold.  I think it's maybe starting to move towards that direction a little bit, but I think those particular models and companies might have been a little bit ahead of their time.  You've got to please the casual modeler just as much as the hard-core modeler. 
and more accurate? It doesn't cost any more to do it right than to screw it all up...That said I bought a couple Mk.XII and plan to use some filer/primer to tame it down when I build them. I'm glad Airfix is doing well and hope they keep on producing and improving.

Old Digger Pilot
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Joined: February 28th, 2005, 6:33 pm

April 25th, 2012, 6:49 pm #7

Do any of you have any theories as to why Airfix went "backwards" with their Mk.XII kit after the stellar efforts with the Seafire 46/47 and Mk.22/24? In my view the latter were a millennium leap forward but the Mk.XII seems to be far less impressive; not bad but trenches for panel lines and a few other "crudish" moldings. I don't understand why they did that. Obviously money is involved but still I find it disturbing. Doesn't quality mean anything anymore? cheers, LL

So a friend says: "cheer up things could be worse; so I cheered up and sure as hell Things Got Worse!
Production managers, planners, etc., might not pay as close attention to panel lines as we do, and if they changed the master maker for convenience's sake, cost, or availability, it may have affected the product. It may not be a programmatic change, but a "hiccup" as it were. It's also possible that the master was made before the other ones and was only used more recently, or that the product budget changed.

Mike H
"If a tree fell in the forest, would it sue?"
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Joined: March 1st, 2004, 7:55 pm

April 25th, 2012, 6:53 pm #8

Wouldn't it be possible to build a better Spitfire MkXII by combining the nose of the Airfix kit with the fuselage and wings of an Italeri Spitfire LF MkIX?

Saluti

Giampiero
...then I'd be tempted to take a sanding block to the kit first.

I reckon the Mk.XIIs fuselage could be improved no end with some sanding work, the plastic is biblically thick!

That would also take the panel lines back a bit.

The depth problem isn't so obvious with the Seafire XVII because of the bubble-canopy.
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Joined: February 15th, 2009, 5:46 am

April 25th, 2012, 7:01 pm #9

and more accurate? It doesn't cost any more to do it right than to screw it all up...That said I bought a couple Mk.XII and plan to use some filer/primer to tame it down when I build them. I'm glad Airfix is doing well and hope they keep on producing and improving.

Old Digger Pilot
The biggest thing with Airfix right now is the company they're using to do their newer tooling had no background doing model kits before*, so there's been a little bit of a learning curve.  They'll keep getting better and better.  We're still in the early days of the "new" Airfix. 

*don't quote me on that, I think it's Airfix, but it may be another company and I'm mixing the two up.   
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Joined: February 27th, 2005, 1:47 pm

April 25th, 2012, 7:02 pm #10

Do any of you have any theories as to why Airfix went "backwards" with their Mk.XII kit after the stellar efforts with the Seafire 46/47 and Mk.22/24? In my view the latter were a millennium leap forward but the Mk.XII seems to be far less impressive; not bad but trenches for panel lines and a few other "crudish" moldings. I don't understand why they did that. Obviously money is involved but still I find it disturbing. Doesn't quality mean anything anymore? cheers, LL

So a friend says: "cheer up things could be worse; so I cheered up and sure as hell Things Got Worse!
considering the amount of unemployed in the UK right now, I would think in two years I could understand how the big boys get things so nice.
The way I see Airfix' problems are thus- competitive tooling and moulding is perceived to only be available in Asia. The spin off from this, that while a company such as theirs need to communicate at long distance with suppliers who may not be entirely trustworthy /honorable/ or more importantly loyal, means that it will always be easier to keep adding the cost on to the price spent so far, than to say- STOP- let's bring this all back, find someone with a good yet cheap set up in the UK, who wants the work ,is willing to enter into a long term relationship, and who is willing to learn together.
I see no other way of Airfix ever getting up to "our" requirements for what we think their product should be without breaking the bank.
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