The construction of model replicas like planes and cars has been around since the 1930s. It became even more famous in the 1950s and 1960s. Companies such as Airfix has been here for a long time. Airfix, the main manufacturer of plastic model kits in the early years, was soon followed by a lot of other businesses, most of which were American, such as Revell. Thus, it comes down to a question. Is Revell better than Airfix?
Airfix is definitely better if we are talking about a beginner-friendly model because Airfix is relatively easier to build compared to Revell. When it comes to attention to detail, Revell is most likely better but it is not recommended for beginners because they are harder to assemble.
In short, it depends on your experience in assembling aircraft model kits. If you already have experience in building model aircraft kits, then Revell is good since you would see more quality on the finished product. This article would talk about the differences between Revell and Airfix. We will discuss each of them in greater detail and will give my personal take on the matter.
If you are interested in the best commercial airplane models, feel free to check out this article: Best Commercial Plane Models.
Which Is Better: Revell Or Airfix?
When it comes to deciding whether Revell or Airfix is the better model, it depends on whether you are a beginner or an expert.
If you have absolutely no experience with plastic models whatsoever, then Airfix is generally the better choice. If it’s your second or third model, then Revell. Airfix kits don’t have the crispest details, but the fitment is better and much more consistent than Revell, which should be more important to a beginner.
To help you, let us have a brief introduction to each of these aircraft replicas makes.
Airfix is a British company that makes scale model aircraft and other objects out of injection-molded plastic. In the United Kingdom, the word Airfix is synonymous with plastic models of this type, which are commonly referred to as “an Airfix kit” even if they are manufactured by a different company because they are the oldest UK producer of scale plastic model kits.
Airfix was founded in 1939 and was owned by Humbrol from 1986 until its financial collapse on August 31, 2006. Since 2007, Hornby has owned both Humbrol and Airfix.
|Hard for Beginners
|Less Attention to Detail
|More Attention to Detail
|Started Production in 1939
|Started Production in 1994
Are Airfix models any good?
Airfix models are good if we are talking about beginner friendliness. They are very easy to assemble and have a good following. However, Airfix is not really good with their attention to detail when it comes to their models. In fact, some components are even thin and fragile.
Although Airfix produces excellent kits, I would give most of their model 9 out of 10 ratings because the molded components had flash, were very thin, fragile, and floppy, the cockpit lacked details, and there were no wheel wells – simply holes through the lower wing parts. Their dedication to perfection, on the other hand, is a major cause for their devoted following.
Modern Airfix models are as great as any, if not better than some, and are praiseworthy for their high quality and low costs.
Because Hornby Hobbies owns Airfix, it’s more of a brand than a company with a strong community and customer relations service.
They appear to be working on new products and updating older kits.
However, apart from the soft plastic, they seem to use for their kits, as in the case of the 1/48 Tropical Hurricane several years ago with the sophisticated tubing in the cockpit that was warped all over the place because the material was so tender.
Unlike some Japanese and other Asian manufacturers who use slightly smoother texture materials that are far more attractive.
Airfix models are excellent, especially for your first kit, Airfix is the way to go. Airfix models are substantially superior in quality and detail, and the instruction manuals are more clearer, all at similar pricing to Revell.
To get started with Airfix, be sure to check out their Quick Kits tutorials on YouTube as they always take note of beginners when making their models.
An example of a Japanese Plastic Kit Manufacturer which I also like is Tamiya and Hasegawa. They’re pretty keen in details so I like the quality of their models. If you’re interested, here is my article discussing Hasegawa Models: Are Hasegawa models of good quality?
You can check out Available Airfix Models Here
Are Revell Models Any Good?
Revell Models are good when we are talking about their attention to detail. They are keen on making their models as realistic and beautiful as possible. However, because of this, they have tiny parts, and sometimes, they are very hard for beginners to build. That’s why it is not recommended for beginners.
Revell US/Monogram tends to be pretty shoddy at best. In short, models have a likelihood of getting ugly since they’re really hard to build compared to beginner-friendly plastic kits such as Airfix.
Although some of their kits are pretty decent (their 1/48 AH-1F is a cracking kit) most of it is dated, badly engineered, and not really worth the effort.
As a rule of thumb, look at the box before buying a Revell model.
What Happened To Revell Models?
What happened to Revell is that Hallmark Cards bought Revell-Monogram in 1994 as a subsidiary of its Binney and Smith subsidiary (the owners of famous Crayola crayons).
It was indeed a 13-year-long partnership. Hobbico, Inc. stated on May 2, 2007, that it has purchased American Revell – Monogram, LLC, the Revell name’s corporate owner.
Revell USA temporarily suspended business as HobBico filed for bankruptcy protection on January 10, 2018. Quantum Capital Partners (QCP), a multinational investment firm, stated in April that it will take over Revell’s activities.
Revell USA is presently operating in the Illinois part of the USA where they release new models continuously.
You can check out Available Revell Models Here
What Are The Best Plastic Models?
Since this is an article on plastic model manufacturers, I think it is just right to place here some of the good plastic model manufacturers for your reference.
Here is a list of the most important manufacturers and their specialties: Tamiya, Hasegawa, Academy, Italeri, Trumpeter, Heller, Airfix, Revell, Bronco, Lindberg, etc.
What sets the best kits apart from the rest is the detailing and durability of the model. Generally, diecast models are better and most preferred because they are strong.
We’ve talked about which is better, Airfix or Revell, in this article.
Airfix has been around for over 60 whole decades, with a diverse spectrum of products varying from inflatable rubber toys to vintage and modern cars, motorcycles, trains, model railway accessories, military vehicles, famous ships, rockets, and spaceships, as well as an ever-expanding range of aircraft, the majority of which are scaled at 1:72 for small and military aircraft.
Revell has been in the model-loving business since 1994, and it’s clear that the company has faced many problems but has managed to maintain its head above water. They deserve credit for their determination to create value. For some of the reasons indicated above, however, more individuals choose Airfix than Revell.
“Only the things I love”
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So, here are the things I love when taking care of my Diecast Models.
Cleaning the Models
The first we are going to talk about is cleaning the models.
- Air Brush – For me, this is the best since it not just removes dust but you can use it in painting/clear coating.
- Air Duster – This is a good alternative to Airbrush
- Normal Brush – If you are short on budget, you can use a normal brush. However, make sure that the brush has soft bristles because there are some hard brushes than can cause scratches. That’s why I recommended a good brush that can do the job properly.
Cleaning and Shining Hacks
Well, here are some of my cleaning hacks for removing scratches, oxidation, and so much more.
- Removing Decal Adhesive – Use Goo Gone on those hard-to-remove decal adhesives. It works fast and works like charm!
- Waxing and Polishing – Here is something a lot of people don’t know. Waxing protects the clear coat and paint while polishing shines the model. Instead of buying it separately, use a 2 in 1 to save money. Get this instead.
- Beginner Wax – The wax I recommended earlier is good and provides the best results based on my experience. But a beginner might have a problem especially if they’re not good at applying wax. Solid wax reaching hard to reach surface can be hard to remove. You have two choices here. One is to use a qtips to reach those surfaces, another is to use a liquid wax I recommended.
- Cleaning Wheels, Rubber, Plastic – Do not forget that rubber and plastic surface are quite different, especially in the cleaning process. Just wiping it down won’t do the job. That’s why I use Meguiar’s Vinyl and Rubber Cleaner and Conditioner. Works like charm!
- Make the Wheels Shine! – Making our models look good won’t be complete without tiny details such as shiny wheels! Do not forget this because however small this is, the difference can be as big as night and day.
- Remove Scratches Easily – Tiny scratches are not the end for your model. Here is a simple trick I’ve been using to make my models look scratch-free even without repainting. Use T-Cut.
Painting the Models
Make sure when you paint models, have these ready.
- Tape – A tape is important if you are painting a straight line. Furthermore, it will prevent your paint to scatter on other parts. I recommend Tamiya Tape since it is really made for models. Furthermore, they stick really well preventing paint splatters.
- Brush (Beginner) – Find a good set of brushes to paint your models. Of course, you can opt for an airbrush but it’s quite expensive.
- Airbrush (Intermediate/Expert) – This will yield a significantly better result than an ordinary brush because you can easily spray the paint evenly. I recommend this if you know what you’re doing.
- Stand(Optional) – Stands are good because it can be hard to manually hold the models while painting. It is optional but in my opinion, the price is well worth it for the comfort it gives.
- Drop Cloths – Drop Cloths will protect your surroundings from the paint.
- Primer – The most common beginner mistake I see is painting models without any Primer. A primer will prevent imperfections such as bubbles or paint not sticking to your models. It is a small price to pay for quality results.
- Clear Coat – A clear coat will protect the paint of your models. This will make the paint last longer. Also, it is the one responsible for making your models shine.
Of course, you can’t do painting properly without paint. So here are the ones I recommend.
- Acrylic Paint – Good for beginners because it dries quickly. However, it doesn’t produce results as good as enamel paint.
- Enamel Paint – Provides a good quality finish and longer-lasting paint. However, it takes longer to dry and requires expertise to use.
- Simple Wood Cabinet – While it doesn’t let you display your models, wooden cabinets are good storage for these models. For one, they are not heat conductors which means that the temperature inside will remain constant and remain cool. Furthermore, they prevent light from reaching the models which can cause oxidation.
- Clear Cabinet with Lock – If you want to display your models, then I recommend this. It closes so dust won’t easily get to your models. I also recommend you don’t put more than 1 model in each compartment since metals are good conductors of heat.
So you want to show off your models to others? Well, I got you covered.
Here is my beginner-friendly model photography tutorial that teaches everything from taking pictures to the editing process.
You will also see me doing hands-on photography in that tutorial.
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