The scale model collecting has almost 70 years of history. It is unlikely that the French salesmen, selling cars, could imagine, where their ingenuity will come. That is how it all happened.
To make it easier for the future car buyers to imagine and submit their purchase, the sales agents had to carry a precise scale models of the original cars, that they were offering. And the most popular scale of 1:43 have been chosen after the extensive consultation with the engineers, artists, and even ... with the doctors. According to the experts, the models of that exactly scale are at the same time giving the right idea of the original car and are easy to manufacture. Over time, there appeared scale models of the other sizes that are multiples or close to the multiplicity of 43 - 1:87,1:160, 1:24, 1:12.
As you can see, there is a large field for the collector's work and imagination. Usually the introduction to this restless and somewhat "obsessed" tribe - the scale models collectors - begins with a dozen of scale models, that one usually finds in his hands just by chance. Serious passion comes later.
What and how are the scale model collectors are gathering in their "garages"? There are several principles of forming such collections. The basis may be laid on a scale (for example, only "forty-third" or "eighty-seventh"), or some certain brand (one of the most famous scale model collectors on the bookshelves in his house collected the entire history of the French company RENAULT), or a certain class (where the jeeps are the most popular) or historical period (car manufactured in the beginning of the century, "classics", etc.) Different combinations of these principles. And would it not be interesting, for example, to collect the automotive history of some certain country? For now in any country there are produced scale models of almost all cars that have seen the light for the last hundred years.
So, you have specified the subject of your future collection. Now let's find out what kinds of a scale models are available. Let's start with the smallest. Some time ago the scale models collectors first became acquainted with the miniature replicas of a limousines, produced by the German company "HERPA". Performed in a scale of 1:200 by using the special alloys, this models differ with the accurately made details, including the company logo on the radiator. In the lights and windows there were inserted the finest pieces of glass, mirrors also were "real". On a behalf of the creator of the first models in this scale, this models were often called "Herpies". The price of this scale models is quite high, but collecting them is very exiting thing. After all, you can easily reconstruct, for example, the precise panorama of Paris or Brussels Motor Show on your own coffee table.
The following scales: 1:160, 1:112 and 1:87, received the international designation of N, TT and HO. They are associated with a massive popularity of a "railway" modeling and correspond to a tracks with the width of 9, 12.5 and 16 mm. The models of these scales were initially meant to complement the arsenal of a railway modellers, but eventually they turned into an independent direction of scale models collecting. Especially popular among the novice collectors and among the teenagers is the "eighty-seventh" scale. Most of these models are made of plastic, but the copies of military equipment are usually made of metal.
The "forty-third" scale, the origin of which we have already described, was, is now and will remain for a long time the most popular among the collectors. Models in this scale were produced in no less amount than cars themselves.
Burago, Eligor, Minichamps, Corgi, Rio - it is almost impossible to name all the firms, that are working on this "god" of collectors gatherers.
The world of a "forty-third" scale is large and diverse. The feedstock here will be plastic, metal and combinations of different materials. At this scale are available both: the simplified models for the novice collectors, where the main "highlights" are the opening hood, doors, trunk lid, and the exact copies for the true experts and experienced fanciers with a maximum external resemblance up to the smallest detail. This "poster" copies, made of metal or of special resins and containing sometimes more than one hundred parts, are recently becoming more widespread. Products of the real artists of the scale modeling are in a great demand all over the world. Even when the price for those "toys" goes up to two hundred dollars!
The large-scale models - 1:24, 1:18, 1:12 and 1:8 - are the true "aristocrats" in any collection, and unlike the rest they come in two forms - ready models and so-called "kits" for self-constructing. Such constructor's kits may contain up to two hundred and fifty parts. In few days of hard and painstaking work the holder of such a set can augment his collection with another work of art. Not for nothing the "Rewell" company calls it's large-scale models "a masterpieces". For this kind of "producing" most often there are selected sports cars and Formula 1 race cars or the concepts cars. Very often these special exhibits are supplied by the holders of expensive wood and transparent caps-holders.
Well, and finally, a word about a very special scale models, whose purpose is to decorate the rooms of the directors of automobile factories and automobile museums and the showcases of the most dedicated collectors, who can pay for them from three to five thousand dollars.
The name of Gerald Wingrove is well known to any collector. For slightly more than twenty years he has created dozens of unique models of cars, "classics" in scale 1:15 with the incredibly exact details and nodes. There are known some samples, which, for example, have a fully reproduced engine with a running connecting rod and piston group. In his work this great master and world wide famous specialist is using wood and silver, copper and rubber, leather and steel.
Not inferior to him in skills is a resident of a small Czech town of Vysoke Myto - Mr. Kleyh. He is more than seventy years old and he is masterly copying cars, which were manufactured by the company, that was called "Sodomka".
In a short article, it is difficult to cover all the diversity of the scale models "kingdom". We are only introducing our readers to the basics of a scale models collecting. We are hoping to meet you again and talk about the news of the world of scale modeling. You will learn how to properly store your models, how to draw and maintain a collection catalog, and much more.