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My Saturday morning rant!


1to1scale
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Why do model manufacturers continue to release the same subject over and over and over?

Kitty Hawk releasing another Fw-190! It’s not like we need another! Hasegawa, Revell, and PCM make pretty nice versions already! ZM making another AR-234 and Bf-109G? It seems that some of the most iconic planes are being ignored, yet manufacturers keep carving up the same segment of the hero plane pie. I don’t understand the mentality of it? 

How many different 109’s, 190’s, spitfires, mustangs, p-40s, and zeros do we need? 

Why isn’t there a Kate, Betty, Val, DC-3, or civilian planes like the Staggerwing, Bonanza, PA-161, 172, beaver, otter?

How about helicopters, why isn’t there an Apache, Ka-50, or Mi-28?

Jets? Saab 37, Kfir, F-111, Mig-15, Canberra, mirage F1, Mystere, S-3 Viking, F-106, F-101, T-38, Super Etendard, B-58, Mig-25, Su-17/22, A-37, F3H, and the list goes on. 

What do you guys think, why is it the same subjects over, and over, and over again?

 

 

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This is half my stash of radial-engined Hasegawa Fw190's (the rest are deeper in storage and it's 1am and I don't want to wake the Wife) I have almost the same number of Hasgawa D9 variants as well. There are probably plenty of other Modellers like myself.

IMG_20190818_010853.thumb.jpg.e67097a36c0a668b537fd44c25067d4d.jpg

Almost none of the other subjects in the second half of the post interest me. And of those Modellers who are interested, how many are going to buy 20 kits of each one?

If you're a Kit Manufacturer, what are you going to invest your time, effort and money in? 

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I get both sides of the equation , but I tend to agree with 1 to1................. reason being is when I used to attend the Vancouver IPMS show ( which is excellent by the way) I would see so many 1/32 and 1/48 109's and 190's that they all looked the same to me, and frankly that part of the show became quite dull and rather boring so I began to overlook some truly stunning builds just due to the fact that there was so many of them all painted the same basic colors.....There is also a 'plethora' ( Saturday's word of the day) of 109's, 190's, Mustangs, Spits etc, on ALL of the model forums, and many or nearly all are fabulous builds..... but it seems the same subject matter, and it does eventually become 'ho-hum', NOW I am not singling out just the 109's and 190's , but Mustangs and my favorite Spitfires too.......some times a change is a good thing..... like the Racer's being built on this site, very cool stuff, but as 1 to 1 says, helicopters would be good, and yest a GOOD ICONIC Beaver or Otter which can be taken in many guises, military or civilian, and yes the DC3 family............. a good JU 52........ Tracker for fire bomber............. and a REAL good S64 Skycrane helicopter or an accurate Bell 206 JetRanger............. and yes they can more than keep making and selling the Spits, 'Stang's, 109's and 190's, but variety is the spice of life............................ just my :2c:

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Ok, I'll simplify things then...

1 hour ago, 1to1scale said:

Why do model manufacturers continue to release the same subject over and over and over?

Because they make them money.

I can pick an Arado-built Fw190 A-8 from a Fieseler from a Dornier-Wismar simply from the camouflage. This is all part of the enthusiasm generated for me by the Aircraft type, and are particulars I like to highlight when I model them. However the lack of knowledge and/or enthusiasm of others for my chosen subject doesn't lead me to complain incessantly when a Manufacturer releases a subject I'm not interested in (such as the entire WNW catalogue for instance).

That to me becomes far more boring than grey Aeroplanes.

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1 hour ago, 1to1scale said:

Why do model manufacturers continue to release the same subject over and over and over?

Kitty Hawk releasing another Fw-190! It’s not like we need another! Hasegawa, Revell, and PCM make pretty nice versions already! ZM making another AR-234 and Bf-109G? It seems that some of the most iconic planes are being ignored, yet manufacturers keep carving up the same segment of the hero plane pie. I don’t understand the mentality of it? 

How many different 109’s, 190’s, spitfires, mustangs, p-40s, and zeros do we need? 

Why isn’t there a Kate, Betty, Val, DC-3, or civilian planes like the Staggerwing, Bonanza, PA-161, 172, beaver, otter?

How about helicopters, why isn’t there an Apache, Ka-50, or Mi-28?

Jets? Saab 37, Kfir, F-111, Mig-15, Canberra, mirage F1, Mystere, S-3 Viking, F-106, F-101, T-38, Super Etendard, B-58, Mig-25, Su-17/22, A-37, F3H, and the list goes on. 

What do you guys think, why is it the same subjects over, and over, and over again?

 

 

 

Two things:

1) They make money;

2) People know them, which is why 1) happens.

Kitty Hawk, realizing this, are looking to raise capital quickly and hopefully consistently in order to finance their more esoteric choices. Realizing there have not been any good toolings of the 190 and the other companies promising new ones have not yet delivered, they hope to fill a hole before them. They likely can beat Z-M on price, and HKM on timing, but their kits can be a bit fiddly and that is what will make or break their release. I bought their Kingfisher and P-39 and intend to build them even though others have had fits with those two kits because noone else has delivered on those fronts (I know Special Hobby did the P-39 but those also have issues). I like WWII planes, and if Kitty Hawk needs to sell a 190 or a Spitfire (actually still room for unkitted variants there) to make money to make the less popular airplanes, then so be it.

The vast majority of modelers are likely not as familiar with your list past DC-3 (which is also where my building interest stops) and unless any of that list are visually striking enough to compel someone to buy it then it will remain a niche item. Also, how many movies featuring WWI and WWII air combat are there compared to Cold War, Korea, or Vietnam? 109's and Mustangs have had tons of free advertising the past 70-odd years to ingrain them in the minds of potential kit buyers.

Everyone bitches when another Tiger or Panther hits the market. I likewise roll my eyes at Shermans, M1 Abrams, or T-34s. But in the end the companies are going to make what they feel like making, so all of our bitching is a big waste of time anyway. They are not losing sleep over this. Neil at HKM may be a nice guy, but has he ever asked customers to send him a list of wants to pull his to-do items from? Or does he simply reveal a list of upcoming projects for the next few years? I've been back into modeling nearly a decade now and this type of thread gets repeated with every release of these particular subjects, and it doesn't change. Because the truth is they sell better.

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41 minutes ago, Wumm said:

Ok, I'll simplify things then...

Because they make them money.

Agreed...............

However,
The day is coming when you will be able to get any aircraft someone is willing to sit down and draw in 3D in what ever scale you choose. I envision a person being able to print out pieces and assemble like we do now or even assembling sub assemblies in the 3D software and then printing them. You might even completely assemble it in the software and print it completed and ready to paint.

One might argue that printer prices will be a barrier of entry but that would be wrong, You can already buy very capable printers for less than a HK B-17.

 

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That is certainly in the cards for the future, but until that happens we are stuck with the system in place. I know printer prices will come down, but they need to shorten printing time and the materials used, as to me that seems to be the real issues in need of refinement. I haven't seen what the latest units produce, but I imagine we might need at least another decade to print out parts that look like Tamiya molded them.

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There's lots of stuff that people would love to see in plastic. Everyone has their own particular interests. I mean I'm still waiting for a 1/32 CF-100 (as would Ernie I'm sure). I would even settle for a 1/32 CF-105. It's not that much bigger after all.:D

That being said, the manufacturers have to make what they can pretty much guarantee will sell. The guys running them have their own favorite subjects too I'm sure. 

Sometimes it's the kit that draws you in too. I never had the biggest interest in the Spitfire model wise until the Tamiya 1/32 kits came out. I've now built 8 of them, with #9 on the bench and two more in the stash. 

Carl

 

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1 hour ago, [CAT]CplSlade said:

 I've been back into modeling nearly a decade now and this type of thread gets repeated with every release of these particular subjects, and it doesn't change. Because the truth is they sell better.

I see your point, and this thread is just a rant because i keep waiting for promises, and keep getting plain white rice. 

Coming from the business perspective, and the fact that i am loosing my job because of companies keep jumping on the popular bandwagon, ignoring the slightly less popular choices, makes me irritated with them. I saw it coming twice over the years from my company, nobody listened to my warnings, but they focused on the popular and ignored the logical. Now they lost 10% sales twice in 3 years. Model companies operate under the same principals, and potentially have more to loose with poor choices.

One of the things manufacturers have to contend with, you eventually saturate the market. And other than Tamiya, nobody releases the “perfect kit”, so opportunity for sales shrinks when you release the same thing over and over, and for double the price. What do think is going to happen to Roden Dr.1 sales next year, and HK’s Lancaster? Who is going to pay $329 for a marginal kit, when they can pay $369 for top end? 

It’s true, most of the above kits people don’t know about, but a good half of the list are really potentially profitable. Go take a look at how many of these have been released, over and over again, from different manufacturers in 1/48 or 1/72. I understand the pitfalls of the giant two and four engine planes, but a lot of the singles and smaller jets don’t take up too much room. And if manufacturers just started combining new subjects, ease of construction, and minimal resin and PE, perhaps this might attract younger builders. 

Another thing that happens is the brush off, if a company keeps releasing “me too” subjects, people start to loose interest, and you are only as good as your last Wow kit. A company like KH already has quite a few critics, now release a FW-190, those critics will start comparing them to their predecessors. And instead of positive press about a cool new subject nobody has seen before, now you get the inevitable review that says its unbuildable garbage because the pin does not fit into the hole, the wing has rivets, and the windscreen is not optically pure enough to read Tamiya instructions through. Now people go read model X reviews before buying, and see that it has issues, and go off and buy model Y.

its just frustrating for us modelers that want a significant part of history to model, but end up getting the same hero plane again and again. Somebody like Revell has the potential to make a mint, release a DC-3 in 1/32 and charge, $199.00, they would make a mint, not to mention all the AM that would pop up, military, commercial, conversions, etc.

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1 hour ago, smitty44 said:

The money people actually get the final say. KH was going to kit an F-11 Tiger, had it well on the way. The money people said it wouldn't have enough worldwide appeal in our scale, and POOF, gone just like that.

And I completely understand that decision, it made sense, it would basically just appeal to US modelers with an interest in early naval jets. Now, what if they decided to make a plane that has worldwide appeal, something that has been seen everywhere, Mig-15? Most of Europe and Russia would be celebrating. An F-11 would be a better subject for Fly, or Special Hobby. They could recover costs faster and with lower volume. Now here is a thought, KH and Fly partner and take the work done and make a short run kit? It’s starting to be more common, R2Detail and Fly are working on a B-26 right? Think about it, KH invested time and money into the F-11, and SH has limited resources, why not partner like Revell did with Italeri and Dragon? 

I’m just saying, companies need to start collaborating to keep each other alive. 

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3 hours ago, Wumm said:

This is half my stash of radial-engined Hasegawa Fw190's (the rest are deeper in storage and it's 1am and I don't want to wake the Wife) I have almost the same number of Hasgawa D9 variants as well. There are probably plenty of other Modellers like myself.

IMG_20190818_010853.thumb.jpg.e67097a36c0a668b537fd44c25067d4d.jpg

Almost none of the other subjects in the second half of the post interest me. And of those Modellers who are interested, how many are going to buy 20 kits of each one?

If you're a Kit Manufacturer, what are you going to invest your time, effort and money in? 

I have the Same stack of 190’s and 109’s, not to mention the P-40’s I have! :respect:

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1 hour ago, 1to1scale said:

And I completely understand that decision, it made sense, it would basically just appeal to US modelers with an interest in early naval jets. Now, what if they decided to make a plane that has worldwide appeal, something that has been seen everywhere, Mig-15? Most of Europe and Russia would be celebrating. An F-11 would be a better subject for Fly, or Special Hobby. They could recover costs faster and with lower volume. Now here is a thought, KH and Fly partner and take the work done and make a short run kit? It’s starting to be more common, R2Detail and Fly are working on a B-26 right? Think about it, KH invested time and money into the F-11, and SH has limited resources, why not partner like Revell did with Italeri and Dragon? 

I’m just saying, companies need to start collaborating to keep each other alive. 

HPH and Fly are working together to release HPH resin in plastic as of a couple months ago, I do believe.

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Guest DannyVM

To my humble opinion, it's just the point of interest many people have. German subjects will always have an advantage comparing to other subjects from other country's. So to make this short, yes it's all about money and the profit a company will have by selling them to lot's of modeling enthusiasts.

Is this a good thing?.....yes, for those who are interested to these German planes, no for those who like to see the many other interesting subjects which had also a great impact on the history of flight, and to be honest, there are a lot of these over-seen subjects by the modeling manufacturers.

For the question, do we still need them, in my opinion, no not at all. On the other hand, iff a certain German plane will be released by a certain manufacturer and it's improved in quality over the already released models then it is a yes. Sadly, this is often not the case, so another BF-109 or FW-190 on the market starts to get boring. 

For me, i don't like W.W.2 German planes, but the W.W.1 German subjects are of a great interest to me. strange isn't, but hey, that's why there is such a great variety into us modellers, and that's good.

Regards

Danny

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6 hours ago, 1to1scale said:

Another thing that happens is the brush off, if a company keeps releasing “me too” subjects, people start to loose interest, and you are only as good as your last Wow kit. A company like KH already has quite a few critics, now release a FW-190, those critics will start comparing them to their predecessors.

This will unfortunately always happen in today's 'Look at me' digital age... conversely, KH's main online Detractor is no longer on this Site, so at least they'll get a fair review here. 

It always puzzles me, as to why people complain about inaccuracies in Model Kits that aren't in their scope of interest.

 

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For some reason, black crosses sell.  And sell well.  They have much to offer. Cool camo, gazillions of colorful paint schemes, and generally, very good looking subjects. 

As far as KH goes, all I can say is that I really wanted the short nose version. Other than PCH, the pickings are quite slim there. They could have cornered the market on A-3s.

KH has given us nothing but esoteric subjects.  T-6, T-28, OV-10, F-86D,  P-39, etc.

The closest they came to mainstream so far is the F-5 family.  And now the upcoming Mirage. Their helicopters are easily the best helicopter kits in the world, and I can understand where they’re looking to score on a mainstream subject like a 190. 

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My only comment on this would be that those subjects make money and it will be a brave manufacturer that will produce a 1/32 or larger kit that isn't one of the "hero planes". Amongst a lot of people I know there was genuine anguish that airfix produced the hellcat when there was a "need" for a retooled spitfire or 109, I pointed out that as bad as those kits are airfix still make money from those 70's toolings. I personally am still wanting a ZM TA152 because I'm a 190 etc fan. But I do still like my esoteric stuff as well. 

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With everyone else here : manufacturers release the same subject time and time again because they believe it’s going to make them money. And their working assumption os that it is better to have a slice of a gant pie than 100% of a small cookie ... This is called competition, just like you have more than one beer to choose from, to drink while you watch your favorite program among the dozens available ...

And finally, let’s face it:  if the future release of another FW-190 was announced from Tamiya rather than KH, everyone complaining would be dancing a happy dance, saying they are going to buy at least ten ;) ...

I am just happy that we have manufacturers like KH or Special Hobby, or resin manufacturers, that have released subjects I am more interested in. And I support them with my spendings. This, again, is what free market is all about. Judging by my kit expenditures over the last 10 years, Tamiya is a midget, Hasegawa is not on my chart at all : if they judge business success by my reaction alone, then they would actually say their investments have been wrong and they’d be out of business ...

Whilst I am still waiting for a DC-3 in IM (or HPH to get their price down), I’ll contend myself with the forthcoming Saab 29, and even the Westland Whirlwind, in spite of my « no camo » personal rule (because Westland had the good idea to civilianise one for a few months at the end of WW II.

Hubert

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I just wanted say I’m not hating on HK, if their 190 actually is good, I’ll probably buy one. I still stand firm that with the A5’s that Hasegawa released, there is no “need” for another. I just hope that they stay in business and keep giving us the more esoteric choices. I just wish someone would produce a few of the forgotten planes of WW2 that many of us have been asking for.

And if Tamiya ever releases another 1/32, and it happens to be a 190 or 109, I will buy one just because it’s Tamiya.

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On ‎8‎/‎17‎/‎2019 at 10:40 AM, 1to1scale said:

Why do model manufacturers continue to release the same subject over and over and over?

Kitty Hawk releasing another Fw-190! It’s not like we need another! Hasegawa, Revell, and PCM make pretty nice versions already! ZM making another AR-234 and Bf-109G? It seems that some of the most iconic planes are being ignored, yet manufacturers keep carving up the same segment of the hero plane pie. I don’t understand the mentality of it? 

How many different 109’s, 190’s, spitfires, mustangs, p-40s, and zeros do we need? 

Why isn’t there a Kate, Betty, Val, DC-3, or civilian planes like the Staggerwing, Bonanza, PA-161, 172, beaver, otter?

How about helicopters, why isn’t there an Apache, Ka-50, or Mi-28?

Jets? Saab 37, Kfir, F-111, Mig-15, Canberra, mirage F1, Mystere, S-3 Viking, F-106, F-101, T-38, Super Etendard, B-58, Mig-25, Su-17/22, A-37, F3H, and the list goes on. 

What do you guys think, why is it the same subjects over, and over, and over again?

 

 

Can I get an amen on this?  Some of the topics I most want to address are simply not available (currently) in 1/32.

 

I have hope that an A-20 will come available (HpH has been working on it for a while). Ditto a B-25C, for which there are a ton of interesting possibilities that simply don't exist for the later models.  Likewise a Betty - I would love to do one dressed up as "Battan-2", as flown by the Japanese surrender delegation at the end of WWII...

Or let me add to the DC-3/C-47 bandwagon - I'd **LOVE** to do an AC-47 conversion on one of those,,,  Or a C-119 that could be converted to a SPECTRE Gunship...  There are so many possibilities, which have so many potential branches...

I suspect that some of these would become *very* popular, once they're out of the gates.

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