Airframe & Miniature, Airframe Album and Airframe Detail series. Under the expert guidance of series editor Richard Franks, we publish a range of high quality, exhaustively researched books covering popular aircraft types of interest to the avid enthusiast. Each title contains pages of technical information, full colour profiles, walkaround images, diagrams, camouflage and marking details, a wealth of photographic resource plus information on kits both past and present. The Airframe & Miniature series contains chapters on full kit builds and full sets of scale plans. Every active aviation modeller should have all three series by their workbench.
Airframe Constructor. This range of books provides active aviation enthusiasts with a comprehensive series of modelling masterclasses in print and will be of particular interest to builders of large scale aircraft subjects.
The techniques employed will have relevance to any modeller looking to put new skills within reach, whatever their preferred scale.
Airframe Extra. Many active scale modellers like to build subjects based on a theme or historical event. This series looks at specific areas and events in the history of aerial warfare. Each title covers the history, detail of the protagonists, period photographs and superb colour artwork from Richard J Caruana. Specific kit builds in all three major scales (1/72nd, 1/48th and 1/32nd) commemorate each event that we cover.
Airframe Workbench Guides are designed to be used at a modelling workstation. Produced in a square format in full colour throughout, each guide is wire bound with text pages protected by laminated covers so that it can be used again and again.
All kit builds are specially commisioned for our book titles and are not recycled magazine articles.
Aviation Histories is an occasional series of first hand accounts from veteran pilots and aircrew from past conflicts. If you know of a veteran aviator with an untold story please feel free to contact us.
Valiant Model Wings, a range of easy to use modelling accessories aimed at updating or improving older aviation model kits to bring them up to scratch. We also stock Barracudacast and Quickboost accessories, Aizu masking tape and Gunze Sanyo paint and materials. We are continually looking to increase our range of modelling consumables.
Check this site for where we will be on the show circuit - dates are on the home page.
|Editor Richard A. Franks|
|My recollections of making models dates back to the age of eight, when I think the first aircraft I ever built was an Airfix blister-pack 1/72nd Fokker Dr.I, which was made in an afternoon, resplendent in 'Post Office Red' (as it was called back then) and with the decals applied whilst the paint was still wet so that there were lots of fingerprints! Modelling for me over the next decade was down to what I was bought by my parents or grandparents, but locally we had a newsagent that stocked Matchbox, so most of my early recollections are of building Matchbox kits, not Airfix.
Having moved away from the hobby in my teens to pursue other interests, when I started work I rediscovered my hobby and once again started to build models, mainly Tamiya 1/12th motorcycles, as I have a passion for bikes having ridden off-road (and on-road once legally allowed) since about the age of nine. I continued with the hobby and after a spell in a day-to-day office environment I went on to work for a national aviation museum and then in the mid-1990s I started to submit work for publication in magazines. Via a convoluted route this led to me working for such titles as Model Art International, Scale Models, Scale Aircraft Modelling, In Scale and Scale Aviation Modeller magazines. I took the mantle of editor of the latter in 1995 and continued with that title for the next decade, before leaving it to take the reigns of Model Airplane International from its launch in early 2005.
In November 2010, along with my good friend Mark Peacock, we set up Valiant Wings Publishing Ltd, offering specific aviation and aviation-modelling book titles. In the next four years the company grew, a lot quicker than anticipated, so by late 2014 my workload was such that it was becoming more and more difficult to undertake additional freelance work whilst developing the Valiant Wings brands as I wanted. Fortunately at this time the need to undertake the freelance work at Model Airplane International ended, when the publishers of that title decided to utilised one of their own staff editors to take on the production of this title in-house, so I was able to relinquish the role of editor in December 2014.
With all my energies now solely dedicated to Valiant Wings Publishing, I can develop a great many new ideas, as well as expanding our Airframe & Miniature, Airframe Album, Airframe Constructor and Airframe Detail book ranges. I certainly still have a lot of ideas, so watch this space!
|Publisher Mark Peacock|
I am now in my sixtieth year and have spent the best part of forty years working in print media,
principally in magazine advertising sales and marketing. I came fairly late to book publishing five years ago. My love affair with the kit construction hobby started at the age of six when my grandparents came to visit, brandishing a bagged Airfix Saunders-Roe SR.53 kit. I was hooked.
The later acquisition of Chris Ellis' 'How To Go Plastic Modelling' and an annual subscription to Airfix Magazine helped to further my skills and interests.
After obtaining a law degree I found myself in London on Haymarket Publishing’s doorstep as a trainee advertising sales representative. Over the past thirty eight years I have worked for various companies' titles across several industries.
I'd often thought as a child that the dream job for me would be working on a title like Airfix Magazine or MAP’s Scale Models. This came true when I started to work with Scale Aviation Modeller International in 1998 teaming up with Richard Franks. The SAM Publications’ stable of magazines became undisputed market leaders for a number of years and we learned the craft of book publishing. It was also at about this time that I got back into the kit construction hobby, and work and play finally intermingled.
In 2005 I took the decision to set up my own representation agency and consultancy. One of my first clients was ADH Publishing representing their scale model portfolio with the opportunity to team up again with Richard Franks. In 2010 Richard expressed a wish to start creating his own book series again (he had given birth to the Modeller’s Datafile series back in 1998) so together we formed Valiant Wings Publishing, Richard providing the creative input and myself running the commercial, marketing and administration side.
Our first book was launched at Scale ModelWorld in November 2010. At time of writing we have since published sixteen books in just over four years and have enough projects in the pipeline to keep us going until at least 2020. Although a compact industry the scale model business is truly global. I travel to shows all over the world, I take every opportunity to visit overseas clubs and hobby shops and I find the opportunity to meet and deal with both businesses and individual customers from all parts of the world very enriching and enlightening. I also remain an active member of my local model club, promoting the hobby to the wider community in our area.
But perhaps the greatest buzz for me is making a difference to enthusiasts. It is at the root of what we do. Successful publishing is an effective combination of complementary talents and I am blessed to be working with the very best that this industry can offer. Long may it remain so.
|Colour Profiles Richard J. Caruana|
My first aviation illustrations were published in 1970 by Ermanno Albertelli of Parma, Italy. These were soon followed by a 15-volume history of the Italian Air Force during WWII published by Edizioni Bizzarri of Rome commissioned by the Italian Air Force. Other publishers in Italy to whom I have contributed include Stem. Mucchi of Modena, Ed. Napoleone of Rome and Giorgio Apostolo Editore of Milan. Air International' was the first UK publication to publish my work in 1976, followed by 'Air Enthusiast' and 'Aviation News'. Between 1984 and 1991 I set up and managed Modelaid International Publications, which for ten years produced a specialised aviation monthly magazine,'Modelaid International' (later Air Forces International). My work has also appeared in other periodicals, including 'Scale Aviation Modeller' and 'Model Airplane International' (UK), 'Aerei in Miniatura', 'Aerei e Elicotteri nel Mondo' and 'Aerofan' (Italy), 'Model Expert' and 'Historia' (Greece) and 'Flug Review' (Germany).
Book publishers that have featured my work include Osprey Publications, Crecy Publishing, Chevron Books, Ian Allan, Valiant Wings Publishing and Warpaint Books (UK), Isradecals Publications (Israel), Deyseg (Argentina), Fine Scale Modeler Specials and Squadron Signal (USA), Battilles Aèriennes (France), AirDoc (Germany), Periscopio (Greece), and Malta Flypast (Malta).
Between 1978 and 2007 I also designed 26 sets of postage stamps for the Malta Post Office and MaltaPost. Apart from illustrating books for other authors and publishers, I have also written and illustrated 28 aviation books, including one of Malta's best selling titles about World War II, 'Malta George Cross, Victory in the Air' (1996). In 1995 I was also commissioned by the RAF's Aerobatic Team, The Red Arrows, to co-write and produce their 30th Anniversary book 'Eclat'. Whilst in 2002 I was appointed Honorary Member of No. 203 Squadron, Royal Air Force, in recognition of services rendered to the squadron.
|Modeller Steve A. Evans|
Born and bred in a small shack somewhere in darkest South Wales, sometime during the last century, it quickly became apparent to my parents that I had a problem: I liked “aeroplanes”. Their groans of despair soon turned to veritable squeals of delight when I made my first kit, a tiny 1/72nd Airfix MiG-15 that came in a small plastic bag with the instructions stapled to the top. Built, flown and crashed all in one glorious afternoon. If I had nothing to build I would stand for hours, seemingly catatonic, gazing at the shelves in my local toy shop, at the unrestrained beauty of the Roy Cross artwork decorating the larger series Airfix kits, waiting for Christmas or a birthday to come along so I could get my eager little mitts on them.
It took about 30(+) years for me to get any good at making them of course and in the mean time I discovered that there was a lot more to this hobby than just Airfix. Now, here in the Golden Age of Modelling, we are surrounded by any number of kit manufacturers and so many tools and innovative materials that the hobby would be unrecognisable to that little boy in the toy shop. Over the intervening years I’ve worked for a number of magazines who were desperate enough to print my work, including Scale Aviation Modeller International, Model Airplane International and Fine Scale Modeller. Some time ago I wrote a whole book on How To Build Tamiya Beaufighters for ADH Publishing and now, with the help of Valiant Wings Publishing, it’s on to a new chapter for us all. What fun.
|Modeller Libor Jekl|
My passion for everything connected with flying guided me through my childhood and student years and eventually motivated me in obtaining a degree in aeronautical engineering. Although I’m no longer active in the aviation business, my interest in plastic modelling has never ceased. Actually, I feel privileged to witness these golden years of modelling, enjoying every month many new releases, new companies, an ever growing aftermarket and innovative technologies.
My interest has always been in 1/72nd scale, which is in my opinion the only compromise for my large theme collections, although I admire the large scale boys too Prior to writing this short introduction, I hadn’t realised my co-operation with Richard Franks had lasted so long, it’s more than a decade now, and I’m proud to work with Valiant Wings in their many products, including this new website. I hope you’ll like my (small) contribution to this venture and above all, enjoy our hobby.
|Modeller Dani Zamarbide|
The film 'The Battle of Britain' was to blame for the start of my passion for aviation. Then from the age of 12 I started reading books about the battles and history of the Second World War. This was followed in the 1980s with my first scale model, a Matchbox 1/72nd scale kit.
After more than 25 years my passion remains and has, if anything, intensified with the help of friends like Richard A. Franks and Mark Peacock who have helped my enjoyment of modelling to cross the borders of both nations and languages. During this time I made models of all types but my particular favourites are 1/48th and 1/32nd, mainly because of the level of detail you can achieve.
With each model I make I like to first immerse myself in the whole history of the aircraft, the technical data, photographs and detailed drawings so that fits in nicely with the books published by Richard and Mark, because to me their books are the perfect complementary 'tool' for the modeller. My desire and enthusiasm for making model aircraft sits perfectly with the ideas of those behind Valiant Wings Publishing, so much so that each day I like my work more and more.