In the box: Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe

Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe- Box artOne of the things I love about modeling is the times that it puts me back in touch with my childhood. Despite the years, the hobby connects me with simpler times, when I spent many an hour building kits.

When I received my Airfix Club package in the mail today, I had one of those times.

If you are not familiar with it, you can find out more about the Airfix Club at the Airfix website. For a reasonable price, you can receive various catalogs and club magazines, club membership items, and- most important to me- a kit available only to club members.

Opening the box, I had a feeling of excitement much the same as I did as a child. A membership card, a club pin, a Spitfire pin and a card to collect Airfix Flying hours were all in the box. But the real prize really made me feel like a kid- a 1/48, club members only Spitfire Mk. XVIe!

Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe- Fuselage spruesPacked in a Limited Edition box, the kit itself is essentially the same sprues as the Airfix Spitfire Mk. IXc/XVIe, which I’ve enjoyed building previously. The only difference- aside from the limited availability- is the fuselage, which is the later type with the cut-down rear fuselage with bubble canopy.

Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe- decalsThe markings provided are for two very striking aircraft- one a black and gold scheme from RAF 21 Group, and the other an aluminum and red trimmed aircraft owned by Eddie Coventry of BAC Aviation.

Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe- Cockpit detailThe kit itself is very nice. Having built two of the Mk. IXs, and being right in the middle of the Mk. I from Airfix, I’m quite familiar with the pros and cons of the model. Detail is more than adequate, the cockpit having both cast sidewall detail and various parts to be glued in. With a bit of paint and a little modeling skill, it turns out quite nice right out of the box. Throw in some seat belts and perhaps a decal stencil or two, and it makes quite a fine office.

Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe- Wing sectionThe fuselage is well shaped, and though it requires a little bit of filler here and there, for the most part it goes together well. Perhaps my eyes fool me, but the wings, which were a bit thick in the Mk. IXc/XVIe kit, appear to be markedly thinner on both the leading and trailing edges- nice! Experience with the latest Airfix releases showed me that the wing to fuselage join is improved greatly by using a piece of scrap sprue to spread the fuselage open a bit, and I would imagine that is the case with this kit also.

Airfix Club’s 1/48 Spitfire Mk. XVIe- CanopyThe clear pieces, in the form of the forward and aft canopy pieces, are very clear and reasonably thin. The canopy framing is slightly raised. Some might ask for more petite framing, but quite honestly, I appreciate having some height to the framing to make masking easier. I’ll trade a little scale size for ease of build any day!

Another nice touch to the kit was the inclusion of three bottles of Humbrol Acrylic paints- interior green, aluminum, and black. I’m looking forward to trying Humbrol paints. I normally use PollyScale paint, as that is what is available at my local hobby shop, but it will be nice to try out another brand of paint for comparison. I know many modelers worldwide depend on Humbrol for their paint needs, so it will be nice to see how they work out for me!

Official Airfix Club SpitfiresHere’s a picture from Airfix that shows both marking schemes. Great looking, and not the typical Spitfire markings.

If you’re a fan of Airfix or Spitfires, or simply want a great kit to build, you should certainly consider joining the Airfix Club. You’ll get a good value for your money, and will have a nice kit that probably not too many of your fellow modelers may have.

And maybe you’ll even get back in touch with that kid inside of you.

4 comments

  • I have built a couple of these planes – good luck with it!

  • is there sprues in there for 1 or 2 builds?

  • The kit contains parts for one aircraft, though two sets of markings are provided. This was the kit released as the 2008 Club Edition Kit, so finding one may be difficult.

  • Howdy Jon!
    Remember me? I haven’t written for a while thought I would try to hook up again. I hope you and your family are well and your job situation is better. Thing are going better with me and my wife she recntly had complications from surgery and was in the hospital for 3 weks. GOD pulled her through and she is doing well. The diabetic wound on my right heel has finally healed so God has really blessed me in many ways.
    I enjoye the article on the Airfix Spitfire. There was many fantastic planes during WW2 but none was more beautiful than the Spifire.(In my opinion)
    I have recntly got back into modeling after a long break. I got totally burned out from the hobby,and was going to give it up. But I decided to go back to the K.I.S.S method you know (Keeo it simple stupid). I decided to go back to the models I started building as a 13 year old, and I am56 now. The subject is SCI FI Star Trek. With AMT bringing most of the old kits back and Polar Light puttting out some great kits I have found an old love. Klingon Warships.
    I have the K7 Battle cruiser and the Bird of Prey. I am trying to find the Kit from AMT of the Next Generation Battle Cruiser kit #6012 If you or anyone you know has this kit and would be willing to sell or trade I would be willing to do anything. I am presently building the Amt 3pc advessary kit from Next Generation you know the one with the Romulin Warbird, The Klingon Bird of Prey and the Ferengi.Cool Kits.
    Well gotta close now write back soon Your Brother in CHRIST Tom Walsh

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