Okay, so you spend hour after hour working on your latest modeling masterpiece. And it's not just the time, there's also the aftermarket tracks, photo-etch and resin that you spent all that hard earned money on. Everything is just perfect. So, now what? Do you just sit it on the shelf to gather dust and cobwebs, or be destroyed by the parakeet the next time she escapes her cage?
If you have a glass enclosed display shelf you have it made. But if you are like me you need another option. Here's one I like; the Hobbico/Model Maker/Revell display case.
Designed and marketed for 1/24-1/25 scale model cars, the Hobbico case is also a good size for most 1/48 scale armor and some smaller 1/35 scale kits. They also make nice bases for small dioramas and vignettes.
The older Model Maker cases come in a cardboard box, protected by a sheet of styrofoam and a bubble wrap bag. The newer Revell cases are protected by two sheets of styrofoam and several pieces of corrugated paperboard. I have found the styrofoam handy for building up groundwork, so hang on to it!
Inside the box is a clear plastic lid, a black plastic base, a cardboard roadway insert, a cardboard backdrop insert, and four pieces of tie-down wire.
I have used over a dozen of these cases, and have not yet found a defect in any parts. The clear lids are free of scratches or scuffs and fit the base with no problem. I have found, however, that it is a good idea to file the locking tabs down a bit. This makes it easier to snap the lid on without making anything not fastened down jump out of place, and makes it easier to remove the lid if needed. The lid has an easily removed Model Maker or Revell sticker on top covering the injection point. The lid is 3 3/4 " high. Overall height is 4 1/4". (there are dimensions listed on the box, but I can't figure out how they measured it!)
The base is 9 7/8" by 4 7/8" and has 9 1/4" by 4 3/8" of usable space. To give an idea of the size, the photos shown of the built models are a 1/35 scale Pak 40 and a 1/48 scale M4 Sherman. There are predrilled holes for the tie-downs and for a series of 1/24 scale lighted car accessories.
The roadway insert portrays a modern asphalt highway, but can easily be painted or covered with groundwork. The backdrop appears to be somewhere in the southwestern United States but could, I suppose, be used in parts of Europe or the Mediterranean. The tie-down wires, like the styrofoam, can also be very useful. For example; I have used them cut to length as rubber hoses, and made small tree branches from the stripped down wire.
So, there you have it. For a mere 8 bucks you can protect your investment of time and money from dust, cobwebs, feather dusters, and rampaging parakeets!
(Hobbico does/did have a larger size for 1/18 scale cars, but it apparently is only available in a deluxe set with lighted accessories and power pack.)
Highs: Inexpensive and protects models from damage. Lows: Top is a tad hard to pop on or off unless tabs are filed.Verdict: Most certainly worth the price if you want to keep your hard work looking good.