David Knights' Weblog

July 6, 2018

Airfix Wellington

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 7:40 pm
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The new tool Airfix Wellington has been released.  This one is bound to be popular in England.


February 3, 2018

Airfix Wellington

Filed under: Modeling — dknights @ 7:24 pm
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After a couple of good years from Airfix for 72nd scale releases, this year they’ve slowed their introduction of new 72nd scale kits.  However, we are getting a new Airfix Wellington.  I predict several versions will ultimately appear.

November 3, 2008

Book Review: Wellington’s Smallest Victory

Filed under: General,Modeling — dknights @ 5:31 pm
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Book Review: Wellington’s Smallest Victory

By Peter Hofschröer

Review by D. M. Knights

ISBN: 0-571-21769-9



This is a book any model builder would love.  It is the story of Lt William Siborrne, a British Army officer who was hired after the battle of Waterloo to create a diorama of the battlefield at the height of the battle.  This time in the battle was commonly referred to as the “Moment of Crisis”, when the final attack of the French was beaten off by the British.  This diorama, known as “The Large Model” to distinguish it from a separate diorama that Lt. Siborne did of a portion of the cavalry battle, took Siborne from 1830 to 1841 to complete.  Worse yet, initially commissioned to do the model for the government, he began the work and was paid a small sum for his initial expenses, but then successive changes in governments caused each successive administration, including the government headed by the hero of the battle, The Duke of Wellington, to refuse to pay for the completion of the model.  Siborne, who had poured his heart and soul into the project, refused to be deterred and completed the model using his own funds, to the point of going into hock for everything he owned to finish the model.  The Duke of Wellington apparently did not want to see the model finished and displayed because it depicted the Prussians as having had a much greater part in the final defeat of the French than Wellington had given them in his own report on the battle.  For years Siborne stubbornly held to his depiction of the battle, but in the end he was so desperate to see the model finished and displayed that he even agreed to change the model in exchange for the government paying him back for what he had invested.  Thus it was Wellington’s “smallest victory”.


As a modeler, I couldn’t help but feel for Siborne and his trials as he struggled to complete his amazing model. The completed model measures 21 feet by 19 feet.  It is still in existence and is on display in London.   We, as modelers, have all been there.  Maybe not with governments opposing us, maybe not with the threat of financial ruin hanging over our head (though with the price of photoetch and resin accessories that time may be coming) but none the less any modeler reading the book can sympathize with the struggle to complete the model.  I found this book at Half Price Books and took it with me on vacation in Jamaica.  I couldn’t put it down.  I highly recommend it.

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