Wednesday, March 3, 2010

My First Model Airplane

The very first plastic model airplane I built was the Aurora 1/48 scale Nieuport 11 WWI French bi-plane. The year was 1974 (I think.) I was eight years old, living in Cerritos, California. At this time of my life I was crazy about zeppelins, dirigibles, and blimps, not airplanes. I think the box art of this kit must have appealed to me after having seen the 1971 movie "Zeppelin" with my Mom a year or so earlier. The box showed a German blimp-like balloon going down in flames, with a Nieuport victoriously wizzing by. My first attempt at modeling was horrible. Glue all over my fingers; glue all over the model. And the complexity of assembling a biplane, with its struts and wing alignment was too much for me. The model survived in pieces for a long time afterwards in my room, as a monoplane with no landing gear. But, it has a special place in my heart and mind as being the first of hundreds of model kilts I would build. The model you see here is a 1976 reissue, Aurora's final version of this kit before going out of business. I built it straight from the box with no painting, in homage to my original one back in '74. Decals were applied using the Microscale decal system, to ensure adhesion.