Monday, February 28, 2011

My First Airfix Kit: Westland Scout

The 1/72 scale Westland Scout helicopter is the first Airfix model kit I ever built. The first time I walked into Peterson Hobby and Crafts my eyes were immediately drawn to the revolving rack of Airfix "carded" models. These were like candy for the eyes; the brightly colored kit parts could be seen through the clear bubble cover. The cardboard backing had colorful artwork, and an equally colorful and enticing painting guide on the flip side.
There were lots of airplanes on the Airfix rack to choose from, but I think I chose the Scout first because I liked the shape of its cabin. This model didn't last long in my original collection because it's very fragile, and I probably broke it early on.
On this rebuild, I left the green moulded parts unpainted because Airfix matched the plastic very close to the shade of green required for the British Army version. I used Testors Dark Brown for the brown bits. I was pleasantly reminded how detailed this kit is, with its fine rivet lines and antennae; but the biggest drawback is the clear canopy piece - it's horrible! It does not fit correctly at all across the top of the cabin, and gaps occur around the corners of the window frames. I chose to just glue it on the best I could and leave it. I didn't bother painting the lightly engraved window frame lines on the clear piece; it just wasn't worth it. Still, this was a fun model to build again, and I still like the overall shape and appearance of the Scout helicopter.

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