Monday, November 18, 2013

Building Skipper Riley

It's cartoon aeroplanes week here at Phil's Workbench!

We start with the Zvezda kit for "Skipper Riley" - a character from the Disney film "Planes". Obviously, the model is based on a US Navy Cosair. Characters based on transport vehicles, I wonder where they got that idea from?

Corsair KitbitsAnyway, on the box it is described as "My First Model Kit" and suitable for ages 7 and upward. The scale is even marked as 1:100. Therefore, my tester was my Dad who is ten times the recommended age but does have a 3mm:1foot scale model railway at the correct scale.

In the box, all the parts are supplied on self coloured plastic sprues. Your builder will need to remove these with a knife or pair of clippers. At 7, under adult supervision, a craft knife shouldn't be too scary a concept. You learn how not to cut yourself pretty quickly after all.

Assembly doesn't require glue, or at least not for the main parts. My tester reports that a couple of the beige parts needed a little trimming for a good fit. He used a knife but sandpaper would work just as well. The tiny landing gear parts didn't stay put when pushed in place so he used some Humbrol plastic cement to hold them.

Instead of transfers, the model is decorated with stickers. These look great but the glue on them grabs quickly so make sure they are placed in the correct spot first time as you won't get them off again.

Quickly buildable into a good looking model, if you have a fan of the film, this would make an excellent introduction to plastic kit modelling. They will learn some hand/eye co-ordination and motor skills and get a descent toy as a result. The finished model has a 14cm wingspan so a complete fleet won't take up huge amounts of space. I know you can buy ready-made versions of the same planes but where's the fun in that?

Skipper Riley

Planes kits at Amazon

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