Model Kits



In order to satisfy the demands of the modeller who required more detail than that offered by the various toy makers of the time, specialist kit manufacturers started producing models of Scammell Mechanical Horses and Scarabs. In order to appeal to a wider audience they were usually produced to the model railway scales of 4mm:ft (1:72 or OO Gauge) and 7mm:ft (1:43 or O Gauge). The latter scale is also very popular with collectors of road transport models. Some companies also produced models of Mechanical Horses and Scarabs to the smaller scale of 1:148 which is 2mm:ft and is the scale associated with N Gauge model railways.

Some of the earliest kit manufacturers were Airfix and Merit, both produced plastic kits of Scarabs in 1:76 scale and the former was so successful it is still produced to this day by Dapol. Over time modellers demanded more detail from the models and smaller companies began producing kits in white metal; Langley, S&D Models, Alan Brackenborough (photo) and Fleetline to name a few. Most companies concentrated on the more popular Scammells though Fleetline produced a 1930's Karrier Cob and trailer in 1:148 scale (this kit is still produced by Gem Models). Another advantage of making white metal kits is that it gives the manufacturer the opportunity to produce a model of a vehicle which might not have a wide appeal and therefore a big production run wouldn't be feasible; a typical example being the Ford Tug and dropside trailer produced by John Day in his Vehicle Scenics range for 'OO' model railways.

A more recent development is the use of resin for model kits and one company has produced a kit of body parts suitable for converting a Corgi 1:50 scale diecast model of a 6-ton Scarab into a 3-ton version in 1:43 scale by utilising the Corgi chassis and wheels. On a much larger scale Garden Railway Specialists produce a resin kit for a narrow cab Mechanical Horse in approximately 1:20 scale


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