Curious questions....

General discussion for aircraft display model collectors.

Curious questions....

Postby Peter Si » Fri May 12, 2023 4:54 am


Newbie here, though not new at collecting models.

I recently was able to acquire two rather peculiar models and I was wondering if anyone had ever encountered either of them?

The first one is a solid aluminum Convair Golden Arrow (not an 880) in TWA livery by Peter V Nelson with immatriculation N600C and its original TWA branded stand. There are two distinctive things about this model that make it a Golden Arrow: 1) it has the golden wings as originally planned by Howard Hughes who back then owned both Convair and TWA. and 2) the horizontal stabilizers are not mounted to the fuselage but rather to the vertical stabilizer, similar to the Caravelle SE210, a feature that the production Convair 880 did not have Its stabilizers were mounted to the fuselage and the tail had a slightly different form. The only time I have ever seen this plane in that execution, albeit with Delta livery was on a drawing that was sold on ebay a few years back. That drawing had a date stamp of June 26, 1956.
The stand has a swivel at the top that allows the plane to rotate on its axis. Does anyone know if that was original or retrofitted?

The second one is an almost 7 ft long Boeing 707 cutaway in 1946-1970s Air France livery with immatriculation F-BHSA, made by Maquette d'Étude et d'Exposition. By the immatriculation I estimate that model to have been made between 1959 and 1961. The reason for these few years is that the real life F-BHSA crashed DBR on July 27, 1961 in Hamburg and I would presume that any models made after that date would have had a different immatriculation, but that is pure speculation. Interestingly, this model is a mix of materials. The bottom of the fuselage is aluminum, the top is acrylic, the wings are wood with the landing gear and the engine internals being solid metal again.

Overall the model is in good shape for its age as it was part of a museum collection, save for some damage by the pitot tube on the vertical stabilizer, a horizontal stabilizer that was broken at one point and which I am currently having restored by an antiques restorer and the fact that two of the engine internals/exhausts are missing. Those are relatively heavy foundry pieces and it would be a miracle to find any original replacements. In turn it has the original stand including the thick glass plate that the model was presented on in its time. While I would love to present it on the original stand I don't want to risk the glass plate to fracture and the model to suffer the same fate as the real plane. Probably the groomers should pass with a paint brush and sweep the cabin a bit after so many years. I haven't tried to plug it in before inspecting the wiring as I'm not willing to risk a fire. One particularity I noticed by comparing to a MEE AF 707 on a French site is that mine has two sets of banana plugs (very safe, 110V on a pair of banana plugs....plug it in the wall and touch them, it puts a pep in your step *don't try this at home kids*), one for 220V and one for 110V while the Europeans only have the 220V set of connectors.

Oh and no, don't ask, they're definitely not for sale :D

Would love to hear any input from anyone!
Peter Si
Posts: 1
Joined: Fri May 12, 2023 4:13 am

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