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JB in VA

Questions on two kit companies

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I've never heard of Sterling,but Laughing Whale was bought by Billings Boats. From what I've read, the laughing whale kits don't have good instructions. They look like nice kits though.

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I think Laughing Whale was bought by Bluejacket.  I have a couple of the Laughing Whale kits.  Instructions are not as good as Model Shipways but still pretty good.  They have a couple of very good kits for beginners like the Grand Banks Dory.  Also some of the Midwest kits are old Laughing Whale kits with new names.  Midwest instructions are pretty good.

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Sterling did some boats but their main business was model airplanes.  They made quite a few decent kits for control line and free flight flying.  I think they have been out of the business for more than 30 years.

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Laughing Whale was purchased by Bluejacket years ago.  As stated, some of their designs were/are available under the Midwest brand.  Many of the small craft in the Bluejacket lineup are Laughing Whale designs.  The previous owner had stated that those designs would be updated over time, but I don't know how many actually were.  To my knowledge, the current ownership does not intend to continue with the updating process.  I once owned a Laughing Whale kit of the Herreshoff 12.5 - a decent enough kit, but the instructions were nowhere near on par with Midwest.  But, unlike Sterling, Bluejacket is still in business, so if you get stuck on a Blue Jacket/Laughing Whale kit, you can probably get assistance from Bluejacket's help desk.

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I've owned two Sterling kits many years ago - American Scout (a freighter) and Emma C. Berry. Never finished either. Both were mostly balsa - not very good for ship modeling in my opinion. Emma C. Berry was a complete fabrication - nothing at all like the real boat. It was designed for RC operation.I would not recommend either for a beginning modeler.

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Nothing wrong with my Sterling kit Emma C. Berry. It serves me in 2 ways. An RC Sailor and a static display. It is all in what the builder wants out of a model.

I did my research. The Sterling kit is accurate as a schooner, It was owned as a family yacht and changed over in the early 40's before it went to Mystic where it was restored as and original Smack.

 

http://forum.bristolcountyrc.org/viewtopic.php?f=19&t=227

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