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Who makes the best model ships ??? - moved by moderator


Gundorph
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Hi.

There is a discussion somewhere on MSW.

There is no easy answer to your question. BUT my vote goes to Euromodels.

Not built a Euromodel kit yet but after reading comments and reading lots of kit builds it seems to me to be the best out there.

 

 

But ultimately Models that scratch build modellers are the best quality.

 

Regards Antony.

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It's "horses for courses"really. As long as you avoid Chinese "Rip Offs"! You can't really go far wrong, but for what it's worth I tend to favour Caldercraft JoTiKa. I emphasise that this is a personal preference.  Geoff

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I've got Blue Jackets Constitution,been working on it for years off and on, and its a wonderful kit and instructions. The Victory cargo ship though is not as wll laid out and same with instructions. I have to confess though I am converting  it to a military version. Plans are good though as well as the Connie. I've had a couple of Billings kits over the years and I would not recommend them for beginners. My next build will be the Billings Oseborg Viking ship anad so far the materials look good and the wordless instructions are complete but require study.   BILL

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It is virtually impossible to generalize about the overall quality of one kit manufacturer versus another, due in large part to the fact the kit lines are continuously evolving.  For example, Caldercraft are usually highly recommended, and, generally speaking, their kits are good.  But there is a huge difference in the amount and detail of the instructions included in Caldercraft kits between early designs, like Sherbourne or Convulsion, and later offerings such as Pickle or Badger.  Similar situation at Victory Models, where Chris Watton has gradually been able to get Amati to include more kit-specific fittings and details with each successive design.  As another example, not all of Bluejacket's offerings are in-house designs; some are older kit designs purchased from now-defunct operations (e.g. Laughing Whale).  BJ has made efforts to update some of those kits, but there are still plenty of them out there carrying the BJ label that are essentially Laughing Whale kits.  Other manufacturers (Corel comes to mind) have some kits that are regularly raved about, and other kits that are abominations (ask me about their Flying Fish kit sometime).  So, you really can't single out any manufacturer and generalize by saying their kits are good or bad.  It's usually a case of some of their kits are good, some not so good, and perhaps some are terrible.  Kit quality is almost an issue that has to be taken on a kit-by-kit basis.

 

Cheers!

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I'd like to add a couple of things to already excellent advice....

 

Go here:  http://modelshipworldforum.com/ship-model-plans-and-research.php and read the articles on "Model Ship Kits - What to Expect" and "Kit Selection".   Both have a lot of useful information.

 

The other thing is, which ship or type of ship?  As has been pointed out, kits vary within the manufacturer's line.  Also kits of the same ship vary, Victory varies from manufacturer to manufacturer.   Knowing what you're looking for will allow others to comment on the "best".

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I certainly agree with what has been said, but would like to add my little grit of salt.

Italian manufacturers as a general rule, have been on the market for a large number of years and they know what sells.  As a result, most of them have in their range some models that barely resembles anything that ever was afloat, or there are some blaring mistakes in their plans.  But they still nice models that appeal quite a few modellers.  Furthermore, the more critical modeller can still make all adjustments he wants if he wishes so.

Euromodel of Como is one of them, but they have the extra bonus it seems, to have wonderful plans, and superb metal fittings (not their anchors!)

On the other hand, it is true that both Caldercraft and Victory models show an overall excellent accuracy and good materials, even if there are differences between older and newer offerings.

Model Shipways and Bluejacket should also range among the vey best.  I'm not a fanatic of solid hulls, that are hard to correct to the right shape (and increase the despatch costs due to the extra volume and weight!), while they are not easy to make them look like real planked hulls without actually planking them over.

 

JP

 

By the way, it is sad that I never saw a review or a build log of what looks like an impressive model: the Redjacket clipper!?

Also, I started building a Victory Ship by Bluejacket and had quite a few problems with that kit:

- the solid hull showed huge chunks of wood at both ends, which were a pain to remove

- the stem definitely was not the right angle, so the hull did not show that characteristic straight stem 

- details in the kit were very basic and the metal fittings were, say, average

- my plans were a Xerox copy and as soon as something was put on the sheet, the toner would just be brushed off.  Luckily, I happened to have another set of the same plans

I wanted to superdetail the model to a ship on which I sailed, but the model has now been on hold for more than 20 years now.

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