Break­ing the mould

A one-tenth scale model is a spe­cial treat for col­lec­tors, writes Paul Gover

Herald Sun - Motoring - - News -

AHULK­ING gi­ant has rewrit­ten the rules for scaled-down race repli­cas in Aus­tralia.

It’s a mas­sive one-tenth scale model of the Jim Beam Fal­cons raced in this year’s V8 Su­per­car

I would have to say it’s the best in its cat­e­gory

cham­pi­onship by James Court­ney and Steven John­son, pro­duced by Biante Model Cars.

The new­comer tow­ers over the 1:18 scale mod­els that are most pop­u­lar with col­lec­tors in Aus­tralia, and ab­so­lutely dwarfs any­thing in the smaller 1:43 and 1:64 classes of V8 Su­per­car mod­els. But it comes at a gi­ant price — $3000 — and only 35 are be­ing built.

Most are ex­pected to be snapped up by cor­po­rate col­lec­tors, in­clud­ing back­ers of Dick John­son’s race team, though sev­eral have gone to keen and cashed-up pri­vate buy­ers.

‘‘It’s the only one-tenth resin model Biante has made, so I would have to say it’s the best in its cat­e­gory,’’ says Biante devel­op­ment chief Mar­ion Scrivens.

She has led the project for close to a year and over­seen ev­ery­thing from the moulds — the parts are made from resin, not the more-com­mon diecast process used for 1:18 scale— to the fi­nal art­work.

‘‘The project has been around for seven months.

‘‘Biante has a re­la­tion­ship with DJR so it made sense to do their Fal­con first,’’ she says.

The pro­to­type is still be­ing com­pleted, but Scrivens says most of the limited pro­duc­tion run— 20 copies of Court­ney’s Fal­con and 15 of John­son’s — are sold.

‘‘It’s a fair go for any­one who can af­ford it. They are nearly all sold out.’’

She says the one-tenth scale model weighs a lit­tle over 5kg and is supplied in a cus­tom-made dis­play case.

Though the de­mand is likely to be limited, she can see fu­ture runs in the large scale.

‘‘We’ve prob­a­bly spoiled 1:18 col­lec­tors. It’s a niche mar­ket,’’ she says.

‘‘Early in­di­ca­tors show it is suc­cess­ful and it is a niche model. Hope­fully it will lead to fu­ture projects.’’

But she is not rul­ing out new de­vel­op­ments in the pop­u­lar and more af­ford­able 1:18 scale where cars cost around $200 and Biante com­petes against the ri­val Clas­sic Car­lecta­bles.

‘‘We’re ex­plor­ing more and more resin and 1:43 scale. We need to make it in­ter­est­ing for the col­lec­tors,’’ Scrivens says.

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