[Headline: Flying models in flux]
It is my intention to devote this column to the vendors and their latest offerings at the 2014 Flying Aces Club (FAC) Nationals. Because it is the holiday season, I like to emphasize new products as gifting possibilities. I will mention some of the best to you, but a modeling news flash takes precedence.
On August 22, 2014, Carstens Publications, a leading publisher of hobby magazines for more than 50 years, ceased production. Among the magazines affected is Flying Models magazine.
Flying Models began in October 1928 as Flying Aces, the publication that gave rise to the Flying Aces Club (FAC). In 1947, it was renamed Flying Models.
In 1969, the publication was bought by Carstens Publications. Under Frank Fanelli’s brilliant editorship, Flying Models expanded its coverage to include RC, ducted fans, and electric flight. The magazine was also modernized with digital editions for home computers and other tools of modern communication.
High quality has always been a trademark of Flying Models. In February 2014, Flying Models presented a Peanut Scale Albatros D.XI by David Wagner. David’s article is profusely illustrated with his splendid color photographs, his plans, and construction notes. If you have not seen the article, I recommend it. It is perfection. I hope that we will see more from David in the future.
Although Carstens’ publication of Flying Models has ceased, negotiations are in progress for a new publisher. If this happens, it will be a wonderful gift to us all!
FAC Nats Vendors
There were fewer vendors present at this year’s FAC Nats. The dominant vendor was the FAC itself, but three other vendors stood out.
First was Easy Built Models, which is enjoying its 82nd year of business. It not only honors its past with updated versions of more than 100 traditional print wood kits, but it continues to expand using the latest technology. Easy Built’s latest offerings include the PD-14 Hung-Aereon (Kit# PD-14) designed by FAC cofounder Dave Stott for the FAC Embryo event. This model defies your belief in what can fly.
Also new is a laser-cut 16-inch Beechcraft Staggerwing (Kit# PD-15) designed by Rich Weber. The Staggerwing is a superb flier with many reported out-of-sight flights. Both the Hung-Aereon and the Beechcraft Staggerwing come as complete kits with laser-cut parts, rolled CAD-drawn plans, complete strip wood, rubber, propellers, tissue, and markings for beautiful results.
Thomas Designs has introduced a double kit of the Bostonian Beaver that can be built either as a 16- or 24-inch wingspan version of Walt Mooney’s famous design. The double kit features top-grade materials, including crisp laser-cut parts, propellers, propeller bearings, tubing, select balsa sticks, high-definition drawings, and Esaki tissue. An Internet search will reveal a variety of color schemes available for the Bostonian Beaver.
Air Ace Models’ newest product is a 1/32-inch sheet version of Top Flite’s Bf 109E kit of the early 1950s. The prototype was displayed at the 2014 Toledo Show, where it was met with great enthusiasm.
The kit includes complete construction plans and parts drawings, plus a plastic propeller, and vacuum-formed spinner and canopy. The model features Air Ace Models’ Esaki tissue covering that has been preprinted on a color copier. The markings will not run when applied wet.
For your building pleasure, the full plans and construction notes for Air Ace Models’ Born Loser P6E has been placed on the Model Aviation website. Full-color tissue covering is available from Air Ace Models.
May happiness and peace be with you and yours in this holiday season and the coming year.
Air Ace Models
Dennis O. Norman
11216 Lake Ave.
Cleveland OH 44102-6102
Easy Built Models
National Free Flight Society